Surtex® Announces Comprehensive Conference Program – Three-Track Series Shares Design Intelligence - Surtex

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Surtex® Announces Comprehensive Conference Program – Three-Track Series Shares Design Intelligence

WHITE PLAINS, NY, March 4, 2015… SURTEX®, North America’s premier exposition and conference for the selling and licensing of original art and design announced a comprehensive conference program at the upcoming 29th annual edition of the event. The three days of programming will be presented in three distinct educational tracks — CORE, ADVANCED and TREND & BEYOND, to complement the market experience.  SURTEX is slated to run May 17-19, 2015, at New York City’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

As part of the 10-part seminar series, design and licensing experts will address best business practices. In a wide variety of categories, such as licensing, monetizing art and trend-spotting, will be among topics covered for an audience of art buyers and licensees.

“The SURTEX conference program is designed to share business strategies and design intelligence from a creative perspective,” said Liz Crawford, vice president and group show director.  “SURTEX attendees and exhibitors, whether new to market or industry veterans, will benefit from the comprehensive series which will provide takeaways that can be immediately implemented into their daily business practices.”

On Sunday, May 17, the CORE series will cover many aspects of licensing – from beginner through advanced elements.  Jeff Grinspan, owner of Grinspan and Co.; Suzanne Cruise, president of Cruise Creative Services; and Monica Lee, coach/host of Smart Creative Women will present two seminars:  “Monetizing Your Art 1: Licensing, Selling and Beyond,” 9:00 – 10:30am, for designers new to licensing with topics addressing how to make the jump from creativity to commerce, whether licensing is the right tactic and how the business has evolved over the years; and “Monetizing Your Art II: Advanced Business Strategies,” 11:00am – 12:30pm, which outlines a multi-pronged approach to licensing success with marketing, promotion, sales, presentation, tradeshows and portfolio management.

Two additional CORE sessions, presented on Sunday, May 17, will explore licensing agreements and licensing agents.  In “Contracts and Agreements: Licensing and Sales,” 1:00 – 2:30pm, Joshua Kaufman Esq. from Venable LLP will dissect a typical licensing agreement and explain user rights, territory definitions and other legal terms in this seminar.  In “Get Me an AGENT,” 3:00 – 4:30pm, three experts – Marty Segelbaum, president of MHS Licensing; Sam Abell, president of Courtney Davis, and Julie Ager, licensing director for Artistic Designs Group – will discuss the basics of finding and working with a licensing agent.

On Monday, May 18, the ADVANCED series will present three “category close-ups,” which will explore trends in the tabletop, social stationery and home fashions industries, as well as a fourth, cross-category session addressing legal issues connected with licensing.  In “Category Close-up: Tabletop and Home Décor,” 9:00 – 10:30am, Suzy Bramlett, design director of Mohawk Industries, John Chester, owner of Wild Apple Graphics, and Tom Mirable, SVP global trend and design for Lifetime Brands, Inc. will discuss strategies to identify winning looks and the process for reviewing and evaluating art.  In “Category Close-Up: Paper, Greeting Cards & Gift,” 11:00am – 12:30pm, Ingrid Liss, creative director of DEMDACO, Susan January, vice president of Leanin’ Tree and Sue Todd, COO and owner of MagnetWorks will share submission guidelines and process procedures for social stationery. In “Category Gurus: Textiles and Home Fashions,” 1:00 – 2:30pm, Susan D’Arcy, vice president design for Bardwill Industries and Liz Wain, principal of Wain’s World, will present best practices that work in the home textiles industry.

Beyond discussions of what works in various product categories, a fourth, cross-category ADVANCED track session titled “Understanding Copyrights & Protecting Your Art,” 3:00 – 4:30pm, will address the legal aspects of licensing such as copyright issues.  The presenter for this session is Jeanne Hamburg, Esq. Norris McLaughlin & Marcus PA.

On Tuesday, May 19, the TREND & BEYOND series will present two sessions.  In “Trendspotting: From Insight to Execution,” 9:30 – 11:00am, Scott Power, owner of Crewest Studio and Sarah Van Aken, executive director of Brand Development for Kathy Davis Studio, will explain how to spot trends and evaluate their life cycles.  In “Art Business Boot Camp Review,” 11:30am – 1:00pm, Art Inc. author and artist, Lisa Congdon, will share insights about the business of art.

Registration for the full Conference program is $800 through March 23 for early bird pricing, $890 from March 24 through May 16, and $1,000 onsite at the show.  Pricing for individual sessions is $90 in advance and $100 per session onsite at the show.  The full Conference program purchase includes a show badge, valued at $495.

Participants are also invited to attend SURTEX cocktail hour on Monday, May 18. 2015. The event will be held to facilitate networking opportunities between exhibitors and attendees. Earlier that day, SURTEX also will announce and celebrate one grand prize winner of designext®, an annual international design competition honoring art and design students for exceptional surface design work. Click here to register for SURTEX Conference Series. For more information about attending or exhibiting at SURTEX visit, or contact John Erich to discuss exhibiting options at

SURTEX is the annual tradeshow for the surface design industry, bringing together owners and creators of surface design (artists/designers/studios/agents/brands/licensors) with manufacturers, retailers and marketers utilizing surface design for product development needs.  Since 1986, SURTEX has been the single event and global resource offering the full scope of art selling and licensing under one roof.  The 2015 show, slated for May 17-19, will connect some 325 exhibitors featuring the work of over 1,200 artists and designers from around the world, with 5,500 attendees.  For information and registration, visit