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ArtPrize kicks off despite technical glitches

Posted at 10:46 PM, Sep 23, 2015

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — ArtPrize Seven launched Wednesday. It's bringing thousands of artists and admirers to Grand Rapids to experience what the world's largest art competition has to offer.

A glitch with technology  brought voting to a halt on the first day as thousands of people were getting ready to cast their votes. By Wednesday  evening, those tech problems had since been resolved. FOX 17 talked with artists and voters and the technical difficulties didn't ruin their ArtPrize experience.

Christian Gaines is the executive director of ArtPrize.

“When you have 450,000 people and take place over 19 days and have 100 thousand downloads and 40 thousand registrants and half a million votes cast, sometimes you have problems," said Gaines.

Voting was down for about six hours Wednesday. Officials said it was due to an Amazon Web service outage.

"It’s a pretty reliable service, so we’re surprised. The timing wasn’t great," said Gaines.

The glitch didn't stop Gaines and his ArtPrize team from moving forward.

"ArtPrize is a massive event. It takes place over a long period of time. We spend the whole year putting it together and one of the things we all really love as an events team is working out the kinks," said Gaines. "By and large it’s a pretty smooth operation."

Gaines also said technical difficulties can be common when there are lots of people signing on to partake in something as massive as ArtPrize.