The Georgia Gourd Society
Competition Categories and Rules
Gourds in grower categories must have been grown by the exhibitor (adult or youth) and in good condition. Gourds must have stems, be mature, and be clean. Non-crafted gourds must not be cut. No finish of any kind is permitted. One year previous or current season gourds are permitted in the non-craft categories.
1. Greatest circumference – must be uncut.
2. Longest dipper-type (stem to blossom) - Gourds with a long handle and distinct bulb.
3. Smallest gourd (hard shell or ornamental) in overall size.
4. Most unusual gourd, naturally.
5. The Jim Story Memorial Award: $25.00 prize. The winner of this competition will be eligible for the National Jim Story Award with a first prize award of $500.00.
CRAFTED GOURDS YOUTHS ONLY
Awards will be given to all youth who have entered. Any technique(s)
It is the responsibility of the parent or grandparent to select the correct age division.
6. Best youth craft (Age 1 to 5).
7. Best youth craft (Age 6 to 12).
8. Best youth craft (Age 13 to 18).
ADULT CRAFTED GOURDS
First place, second place, and third place awards will be given for entry categories 9 through 43 in entrant classifications.
Categories with a GM prefix designate the Grand Master Division; The M prefix designates the Master Division; and N designates the Novice Division.
All of the participants’ entries must compete in only one division level.
Entrants MUST be a GGS, AGS member or member of any other gourd society.
GM9. M9 N9: Gourd musical instrument, functional. Includes drums, rattles, shekeres, etc. Any techniques.
PYROGRAPHY (WOODBURNING) whole or cut gourd
GM10. M10. N10: Pyrography with or without other techniques. Pyrography must dominate, ornamentation permitted.
GOURD CARVING CLASS – whole or open gourd
GM11 (Grand Master only) Carved Gourds, Chiseled, chip carved, Fretwork, Cut Gourd or Gouged gourds are allowed in the NEW GM11 category. One or more of these techniques may be combined to create a design. All coloring mediums are allowed as well as rim treatments.
M11 and N11: Carved Gourd pertains to the removal of the outer gourd shell: filigree and etching are to be considered carving. Other techniques allowed but carving must dominate, decorative painting allowed, and minimal embellishments allowed.
M12 and N12: Chiseled, chip carved, and gouged gourds. One or more of these techniques may be combined to create a design without cutting through the gourd. Stains allowed, no other techniques or rim treatment allowed.
M13 and N13: Fretwork or Cut Gourd using any tool that cuts completely through the gourd to complete a design or pattern. Stains allowed, light rim treatment allowed but no other technique. Does not include penetration used for coiling.
COLORED GOURD CLASS – whole or opened
GM14 and M14: Painted or Stained Gourd any medium to include oil, acrylic, water color, ink, colored pencil, stains, dyes, glazes, waxes used to complete a picture, design or pattern, other techniques and embellishments allowed.
N14 (Novice only): Painted Gourd, any medium to include oil, acrylic, water color, ink, or colored pencil to complete a picture, design or pattern, minimal use of other techniques and embellishments.
GM15. M15. N15: Textured Gourd, any medium that creates a pronounced raised surface to create a design or pat-tern on the surface of the gourd, any medium allowed, minimal ornamentation.
N16 (Novice only): Stained Gourd, colored with stains, dyes, glazes, waxes, water color pencils, etc. that do not apply to another category, more than one medium allowed.
GM17. M17. N17: Inlaid Gourd featuring any inlay material, minimal use of other techniques or embellishments allowed.
WOVEN GOURD CLASS
Gourd baskets must have handles; gourd bowls (or vases) do not. A gourd must dominate (50% or more) as part of the container.
GM18. M18. N18: Woven gourd bow, vase, or basket with natural plant/animal weaving material (pine needles, vines, natural color leather, feathers, etc.) and/or man-made materials (dyed lacing, wire, fabric, etc). Light ornamentation permitted.
Any technique(s) permitted – gourds must dominate
GM19. M18. N18. Any wearable gourd, mask, jewelry, belt, hat or purse.
BIRDHOUSE/BIRD FEEDERS CLASS
GM20. M20. N20: Birdhouse or Bird Feeder. Gourd and entrance holes should be appropriate sizes, with drainage and hanging holes. Any technique(s)
GM21 (Grand Master Only): Native American or Ethnic themed gourd. Any techniques
M21. And N21: Native American themed gourd. Any gourd with Native American motif Any techniques
M22 and N22: Ethnic themed gourd other than Native American. (African, Chinese, etc.) Any techniques
GM23.M23. N23: Americana or patriotic gourd theme. Any techniques or embellishment.
Unless otherwise specified, non-gourd material may be used, but gourds must dominate. All materials must be natural. No plastic or synthetic fabric.
GM24. M24. N24: Arrangement of dried or fresh flowers or plant material in a gourd container undecorated or suitably decorated.
GM25. M25. N25: Gourd container decorated with a FLORAL theme. Any technique(s). No arrangement required.
GM26. M26. N26: Animal(s), real or mystic, including mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians, dragons, fairies, unicorns, etc. or other earth creatures made of gourd or gourd pieces. Any technique(s).
GM27. M 27. N27: Gourd Sculpture, one or more gourds, any subject including mobiles. May use clay and/or epoxy. Any technique allowed. Must be at least 70% gourd.
HOLIDAY GOURD CRAFT CLASS
Any technique(s) and a reasonable amount of decorative materials are permitted.
GM28. M27. N27: Gourd Ornament. Any holiday or season. Any technique(s).
GM29. M29. N29: Christmas theme only. Any technique(s). Whole or cut gourd.
GM30. M30. N30: Holiday theme other than Christmas. Any technique(s). Whole or cut gourd.
GENERAL GOURD CLASSES
GM31. M31. N31: Gourd toys. Doll, functional toy, or toy set fashioned from gourds or gourd parts.
GM32.M32. N32: Decorated gourd bowl, vase, or basket. Any technique(s).
N33. (Novice Only) Decorated dipper gourds. Any technique(s). Whole or cut gourd.
GM34.M34. N34: Jug, canteen, pitcher, or other vessel designed to hold water. Must be functional, Any technique(s).
GM35.M35. N35: Lamps and Luminaries. Lamps in any style, Gourds must dominate, Must be functional, with or without electricity. (Candleholders, lanterns, lamps etc).
GM36.M36. N36: Beaded Gourd; Whole or cut gourd. Any type of bead is acceptable.
GM37.M37. N37: Gourd Boxes. Any technique(s); Hinged or unhinged lids optional
GM38.M38. N38: Multi-technique multi-media gourd. Combination of multiple techniques.
GM39.M39. N39: I Did It My Way; Any gourd craft entry that does not fit in another category, Must be made of a gourd or gourd part.
GM40.M40. N40: Theme category for the 2019 show –Fairy Tales - Any technique.
GM41.M41. N41: Miniature gourd creations, Must be less than 6 inches in diameter, length, and height, Any techniques.
GM42.M42. N42: Wall art, including masks, Gourds or gourd pieces to create art piece suitable for hanging on the wall.
GM43.M43.N43: Interior Structure. The interior of gourd decorated in some theme or fashion (Mouse house, doll house, nature scene). Exterior of gourd must be decorated to compliment interior. The interior will make up 75% of content to be judged. Exterior will make up 25%.
GROUP PROJECT -GP60: A gourd entry created by 2 or more artists. Novice, master, and Grand Master artists may combine their skills in this category using any techniques or subject.
2018 Competition Rules (2019 Amended rules to be posted shortly)
GOURD GROWERS (NON-CRAFT) RULES
1. All raw gourds must be whole, uncut gourds.
2. Gourds in growth categories must have been grown by the exhibitor and in good condition.
3. Non-craft gourds must have stems, be mature, and be clean. No finish of any kind is permitted.
4. Gourds in the grower’s competition must from this year or last year’s crop.
Previous Georgia competition award winners may not be entered.
GOURD ART& CRAFT RULES
5. All entries must be hand made by the Artist.
6. Only one entry per Artist per category, but there is no limit on the number of categories that can be entered within that division.
7. ALL ENTRIES must remain in competition until the end of the show on Sunday. Failure to do so can result in not being allowed to enter future competitions.
8. All entrants must allow photography of their work under the “fair use” doctrine. No copy or photograph of the work may be sold for profit without the consent of the artist.
9. Entrants must be a member of the American Gourd Society or any state gourd society. If you are not a member and would like to enter a piece in competition, you must first join the Georgia Gourd Society and/or the American Gourd Society at the main information desk. Youth categories are exempt from this rule.
10. The artist’s name should be printed on the inside of the tag and hidden from view by folding and stapling the tag (printable tags and instructions are available on the Georgia Gourd Society website.)
11. All entry tags must be completed and attached to the gourd entry by 6:00 pm, Friday, of the show.
12. Gourds that have won a first place award in a previous Georgia Gourd Society Show are not eligible for the current year’s competition
13. The competition area is closed to everyone except the judging staff during the judging process. Please be patient, the judging process may take a little time but we want to look carefully at each entry. Ribbons will be awarded at this time.
The following section clarifies the quality standards for gourd preparation and presentation. Gourds not meeting these standards will likely receive a lower score. If you have an irregular technique or gourd, please leave a note for the judges using a 3x5 note card.
14. All open (cut) gourds (except birdhouses) must be cleaned to remove surface dirt, seeds, and all white seed membrane and finished, inside and out, for show quality. Stems are not mandatory but must be cleaned if left on gourd. Gourd birdhouse outside surfaces and stems must be cleaned but minimal interior membrane can be left for nesting material.
15. Gourd stems left on the gourd must be cleaned and finished to compliment the design.
16. Gourd quality will be a factor in judging ALL categories. A poor quality gourd can result in a lower score in accordance with AGS rules. A 3x5 explanation card may be placed with a gourd where a major blemish or flaw is incorporated in the design or presentation of the gourd. The judges will determine gourd quality.
17. Leveling the bottom of a gourd by sanding is allowed and will not be considered poor quality or a detriment to the surface technique of the competition category.
18. The inside surface of cut gourds and covered containers may be painted, stained, decoupage, coated, or otherwise finished. The inside finish does not affect the entry category which is based on the exterior surface treatment of the gourd entry.
19. Translucent and clear protective finishes are allowed on all entries except non-craft gourds. Translucent finishes may be colored unless specifically denied, but must be sheer enough to see the natural characteristics and markings of the gourd through them. Examples: wax, ink, colored shoe polish, dye.
20. Gourd stands may be used (revolving and stationary) but are not mandatory. The stand should be complementary to the gourd art, of stable construction, and must not interfere with the viewing of other entries. Electrical outlets are not available revolving stands. If you wish to use a revolving stand it should be battery operated.
21. There is no requirement that the gourd art or craft be presented in an upright position, but the gourd must be stable at rest so that it does not roll or fall from an exhibition table.
22. A 3x5 card and/or photographs may accompany any entry indicating techniques or products used on the entry. The card may be attached to the entry tag string or placed with the entry before the judging. No business cards are allowed on entries until judging is completed, but they may be placed with exhibits after judging is finished. Sales information may be placed by the entries AFTER the ribbons are awarded.
Art and Craft entries will be judged according to the AGS Judging Option B (link to AGS Judging Handbook: http://www.americangourdsociety.org/judging.html
23. Ribbons may be awarded to the top three (3) entries in each category at the sole discretion of the judges. A sole entrant in a category does not guarantee a first place ribbon. Competition criteria must be met to earn a ribbon of any color. A merit ribbon may also be awarded at the discretion of the judges. Awarded ribbons MUST remain in place until the end of the show on Sunday.
24. Decisions of the Judges are final. In the event of an error, no award will be removed but a duplicate award will be given.
25. The Georgia Gourd Society and facility are not responsible for damage to or theft of entries.
IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE ARTIST TO ENTER THEIR PIECE IN THE CORRECT CATEGORY.
Be certain that you have read the specific criteria outline for the category and make your decision accordingly. If you have questions about the proper category placement, see one of the volunteers in the competition check-in area to explain the art/craft category or division. They can provide advice, but you must make the final determination for placement of your piece. Leave your entry with the volunteer who will place them in the display area for you. Pieces entered in the wrong categories cannot be judged or moved unless you agree to allow it to be moved on the entry tag.
Adult Crafted Gourd Divisions
The Novice Division was instituted to allow all artists who are developing the basic techniques to compete among their peers with similar skills. The Novice entrant should not have exhibited in more than four Gourd Show competitions, won more than 10 first place awards (blue ribbons) in any gourd show in any two (2) year period or won a major award in this division. Anyone entering this division must place all their entries in this division. The novice can compete in either Masters or Grand Masters but all contestant’s entries must compete in only one division level.
The Master Division was instituted for those artists who have mastered the basic techniques and are ready to compete with a wider range of competitors. The Master Division is open to all competitors. Entrants can have sold or taught for a fee. Those entrants who have won more than 20 first place awards (blue ribbons) in this division or won a major award must advance to the Grand Master Division. Anyone entering this division must place all their entries in this division
GRAND MASTER DIVISION
The Grand Master Division was instituted for the accomplished artist whose art and skills have been recognized as superior. Anyone entering this division must place all their entries in this division. Anyone in the Grand Master Division will remain in this division until, or when, a new division is created. Qualifying Grand Master entrants cannot compete in the Master or Novice division.