Taipei Annual Arts Competition was founded by the Department of Education, Taipei City Government in 1969, and Taipei Fine Arts Museum (TFAM) took over as the organizer in 1983. The event was renamed to "Taipei Award" in 1996 and again in 2001 to "Taipei Arts Awards", when it was repositioned as a multidisciplinary, competitive exhibition aimed at uncovering the emerging artists of the year. In May 2009, TFAM organized a forum series to examine the award in-depth in order to upraise its caliber. The competition rules were revised again in 2010 and have been applied since. Now, the Taipei Arts Awards hands out one Grand Prize; the winner receives NTD550,000 in prize money and the chance to hold a solo exhibition at TFAM. Five Honorable Mentions are also awarded, each with a prize of NTD120,000.
This year's call for submission in August and September 2012 was answered by 230 entries, of which 20 teams were selected to advance to the second stage. Evaluation in the second stage is conducted through interviews, on the grounds of which the jury shortlist 13 teams to execute and exhibit their works. This competition format not only challenges the creative prowess of the finalists but also their ability to communicate creative ideas and implement work plans. Finally, the exhibition is presented to the jury. They are tasked with evaluating the content and presentation of the finalists' works, in order to deliberate the highly anticipated winners' list unveiling the rising stars of the year.