Frequently Asked Questions


The Lit Exhibit is a writing gallery showcasing (visual, textual and interactive) literary art. By “literary art” we mean: prose, poetry, and experimental or hybrid works including imagery, audio, video or performative / interactive elements in conjunction with narrative or text.

Following an annual open call in the fall, The Lit Exhibit culminates each year in a spring/summer pop-up gallery that takes place in Brooklyn, dating back to July 2016. In 2019, the event expanded to include a zine fest and open market for vendors of zines, self-published and DIY written content. It also went on to include two weeks of free community programming. The event was founded by writer and community organizer Lana C. Marilyn.


How do I submit? Do I need to live in New York or be a US citizen?

An open call for submissions is put out in the fall/winter of the preceding year. International applicants and individuals who do not live in New York or do not anticipate being able to visit Brooklyn for the time of the show are still welcome to submit to the gallery, and will be credited accordingly. If you’d like to receive notifications about our open call, please join our mailing list.

How do I sign up to volunteer?

An open call for volunteers is put out in the fall. If you’d like to receive notifications about our open call, please join our mailing list.

While some of the work can be done remotely, we do ask that volunteers are able to be on-site on the day of the show for assistance with setup and breakdown.

How do I apply to be a vendor?

An open call for vendors & tablers of the Zine Fest and open market segment of the event is put out in the spring. If you’d like to receive notifications about our open call, please join our mailing list.

What kind of work are you looking for?

The Lit Exhibit accepts submissions across three categories:

Textual - This can be short form (prose/poetry under 100 words) or long form (short passages, which are displayed with invitation for viewers to create blackout poems from these texts)

Visual - This includes any work that uses still imagery in conjunction with the text, or which cleverly evokes the idea of “word as image.” Examples include: calligraphy, typography, collage poetry, blackout poetry, concrete poetry, and other formats which utilize art and imagery. Comic strips, however, are not eligible at this time.

Installation - This category for any work which involves video, audio, or interaction in conjunction with storytelling, narrative or text. We encourage vast and playful interpretations of “interaction” especially. Past installations have included stencil cut-out books, boxes filled with various handwritten notes, or letter prompts for guests to complete with strangers.

How should I interpret the theme? What does it mean?

The theme changes every year and is meant to be a starting point, or guideline, rather than a strict rule. We encourage unusual, playful, direct and/or indirect interpretations of the given theme, and invite applicants to take it as literally or as figuratively as they wish. We keep things open-ended in the hopes of challenging applicants to deconstruct, define, or reimagine an idea, and all submissions adhering to the guidelines of the category they belong to are welcome.

Who is Lana C. Marilyn?

Lana is a literary artist from Brooklyn, NY and the founder of The Lit Exhibit, a project which began in 2016. More about her and her work is accessible via her website. You can follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr.