April 12, 2016: For Immediate Release
Contact: Jessica Sager; 727-608-0070;
GULFPORT, FLORIDA: Organizers of Gulfport’s 8th Annual Gecko Ball have announced a call to artists for the creation of their interpretation of a gecko. The live auction of artist-created geckos has become a much-anticipated tradition during each Gecko Ball. Seven artists will be chosen to create geckos for the Ball this year. For the first time in Gecko Ball history, each artist will receive 25% of the proceeds from the auction of their gecko. Additionally, each artist selected will receive two tickets to the Gecko Ball and will be acknowledged during the event.
The seven selected artists’ pieces will be unveiled at the Gecko Kickoff Opening Reception art exhibit on Friday, August 5, 2016, 6 p.m. until 8p.m. at the Catherine Hickman Theater lobby/gallery space in Gulfport. The artists chosen will also have an opportunity to have selections from their own bodies of work displayed during a curated exhibit at the Hickman Theater space throughout the month of August. Following the opening reception, each artist’s gecko will be moved and displayed in a local business in Gulfport’s Waterfront District until the day of the Ball on Saturday, August 27th.
To be considered, artists are invited to submit a brief resume, photos of some of their work and/or links to online sources of information about themselves and their work. It is necessary that artists predetermine and express a concept of the gecko that they would create if selected, including what types of materials will be incorporated. Geckos may be created from any material(s), and may be a three-dimensional or sculptural piece, but no more than four feet in length. Use of a steel form from past years is no longer required. Artists should clearly state that the gecko they create is either intended for indoor display only or suitable for display in outdoor weather conditions. Artists are responsible for purchasing any materials needed to create their designs. Selected artists must complete their geckos no later than July 8, 2016.
The deadline to submit an expression of interest will be May 16th. For more information and to submit materials, contact selection committee Chair Jessica Sager by phone at 727-608-0070 or email to
. Submissions may be sent via email or postal mail to 2624 54th Street South, Gulfport FL, 33707. Over 50 geckos have been created by artists for auction at the Gecko Ball in previous years, each becoming a collector’s item. A portion of proceeds from the Gecko Ball, the Gecko Pub Crawl (August 6th) and the GeckoFest street festival (September 3th) is donated to local charities each year and/or used to fund public art installations. All Gecko events are sponsored by the non-profit Gulfport Merchants Association.
The theme of this year’s Gecko Ball is “20,000 Geckos Under the Sea,” a celebration of all things in, on and near the sea, as well as the classic 19th century Jules Verne adventure novel and the popular movie which followed in 1954. Costumes are encouraged! The event includes catered fare, cash bar, live music and dancing, coronation of the next Gecko Queen, a costume contest, silent auctions and the live auction of artist-created geckos. Tickets for Gecko Ball will go on sale July 4th, and it is known to sell out every year. To receive updates on the Gecko Ball, including announcements of ticket sales and locations, visit and “like” the Facebook page for Gecko Ball at www.facebook.com/geckoball. Ticket sales announcements will also be published in local media. For more information about Gecko Ball, please contact Daniel Hodge at (727) 366-4086 or email