Call for Proposals: Public Art Commissions

The Phoenix, Arizona Office of Arts and Culture maintains an important list-serve of opportunities for both national and regionally-based artists.  I encourage all of you to subscribe to their updates here.   Here’s what this week’s opportuniies brought:

City of Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture Public Art Program




Two Major Public Art Projects Open to Artists Residing in the United States
Seven Major Public Art Projects Open to Arizona Artists

The Phoenix Public Art Program invites professional Arizona artists and teams to apply for new major public art commissions in Phoenix.

Artists and teams must have the proven ability to

1.      Contribute significantly to the design of public spaces and buildings, such as parking facilities, walls, streetscapes, bridges, trails and other landscape amenities

2.      Collaborate effectively with design professionals, community residents and city officials.

Selected artists/teams will work with the project design team and various City of Phoenix staff (Parks and Recreation, Streets Transportation, Transit and Water Services) to integrate art into city infrastructure and open spaces. The talent pool developed through this call may be used, depending on eligibility, to select artists for additional future Phoenix Public Art projects. Applicants to this call will be considered for each project, also depending on eligibility.

Opportunities for Artists Residing in the United States

(Arizona artists are encouraged to apply)


Isaac park: An artist will be selected to design and fabricate features and amenities for the new Isaac Park. The public art enhancements at the park will extend the fabric of public art and design already developed as part of revitalization efforts in the Isaac neighborhood. They include a new city-funded Learning Center, bus shelters, streetscape and pedestrian bridge.                    

 Expected Total Budget: $ 450,000


Sonoran Parkway: An artist/team will join an engineering team to design three bridges, drainage structures and an adjacent landscaped pathway on the new parkway’s Sonoran Boulevard central section. Sonoran Boulevard is proposed to include a 150-foot ROW, one 12-foot vehicular lane in each direction, 8-foot paved shoulders and a paved flush median.  The Central segment includes bridges over Apache Wash, Mesquite Tank Wash and Cave Creek Wash.

 Initial Budget: $105,000

Opportunities for Arizona Artists Only


67th Avenue Bus Shelters and StreetscapeOne or more Arizona artist/teams will be selected to work with City departments and the community to enhance the design of selected bus shelters and their surroundings as part of streetscape improvements along 67th Avenue, from McDowell Road to Camelback Road. The improvements could include retrofitting existing bus shelters and traffic signal boxes with artist-designed panels, enhanced landscaping and other pedestrian amenities near transit stops. Painters, printmakers, photographers and other artists with a strong graphic sense are encouraged to apply.

 Expected Total Budget: $364,257


Arterial Canal Crossings: An Arizona artist will be selected to work with the Street Transportation Department to enhance the design of major street bridges that cross the Salt River Valley canals. The designs will focus on the concrete abutments and metal railings and underscore the historic role canals have played in bringing water to Phoenix. The designs will be incorporated into arterial bridges as they are retrofitted in the coming years.

 Expected Total Budget: $449,700


Family Shelter: An Arizona artist will be selected to develop a project to enhance the City’s year-round shelter for families and women, at Watkins Avenue and 11th Avenue. Painters, printmakers, photographers and other artists with a strong graphic sense are encouraged to apply.

 Expected Total Budget: $107,140


Happy Valley Park-and-Ride: An Arizona artist will be selected to join an engineering team to design a new city park-and-ride to be located off I-17 at Happy Valley Road in north Phoenix. The facility is part of a city-wide system of park-and-rides, located primarily near freeways.

 Initial Budget: $159,300


Lift Stations: An Arizona artist/team will be selected to design and integrate gates, fences and/or wall treatments into the retrofit of lift-station designs at various city locations.

 Initial Budget: $432,000


Light Rail Corridor: An Arizona artist/team will be selected to join an engineering team to design walls, landscaping and other urban features to be built in conjunction with the development of the region’s new light rail system on 19th Avenue. This is part of city’s effort to improve streetscape design and comfort along important transit corridors.

 Initial Budget: $888,400


Park and Ride Expansions: Artists will be commissioned to join design teams to work with City Departments and the community to design park and ride facilities being planned by the Public Transit Department.

 Initial Budget: $60,000


ELIGIBILITY: Individual artist and artist teams are encouraged to apply.  Each project has different eligibility requirements. Arizona artists are eligible for all projects.

PROJECT  BUDGETS: The estimated budgets for these projects will be inclusive of artist fee, schematic design, fabrication and installation (where applicable), all delivery costs, documentation and administrative time. Projects that mention “initial budget” are ones expected to have additional funds added for future phases, fabrication, construction and completion.

APPLICATION RECEIPT DEADLINE: Applications must be received at the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture by 5:00 p.m. M.S.T. on, Friday, August 8, 2008

Depending on the project, finalists will have 4 weeks to 2 months to produce their proposals after the initial selection round.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS: To be considered for these public art projects, artists must submit the following:

Ten digital images of previously completed artwork, presented in a PowerPoint on a PC compatible CD-ROM formatted as follows: 

§         PowerPoint Slide background-Black       

§         Slide 1: Artist or Artist team names only.

§         Slide 2 thru 11: One image per PowerPoint Slide, with a title (at the top) and no other descriptive text.

§         Titles should correspond with titles on the printed image list (see below).

One copy of an annotated, typewritten image list identifying images by number and listing media, size of the work (H x W x D), title, date and a brief description of the artwork if necessary. If the work involves a design team, please indicate which part of the project you were responsible for completing.

One copy of a current resume or curriculum vitae.  The resume should be no more than three pages and printed on white paper in no less than 10-point font.

One copy of a written preliminary statement, not to exceed one page, which addresses the artist’s interest in this project and a preliminary statement describing how you would consider and approach the project (please note this is not intended to be a description of a specific proposal/idea).  Artists interested in integrated artwork opportunities are strongly encouraged to submit a preliminary statement of approach.  The statement must be submitted on white paper and in no less than a 10-point font.

Application materials and CD’s will NOT be returned upon completion of the selection process. If you strongly feel you need the CD back please include a stamped envelope (SASE) with sufficient postage for the return of CD.

DO NOT SEND ORIGINAL ARTWORK OR DUPLICATE MATERIALS.  Late applications will not be considered.  Do not bind materials.  Every effort will be made to ensure the safe handling of materials submitted.  However, the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture and the City of Phoenix will not be responsible for any loss or damage.

Mail or deliver applications to:

Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture

            Public Art Program

            ATTN: Park-and-Ride, Park and Parkway Public Art Projects

            200 W. Washington St., 10th Floor

            PhoenixAZ 85003-1611

Artists may be selected directly from initial submitted applications.  The selection panel may also elect to interview a limited number of finalists from among the initial applications.  Finalists may be required to develop more specific preliminary proposals prior to final selection.  The primary criteria for selection will be previous artistic accomplishment as demonstrated in images of previously completed artwork, design team experience, understanding and experience of engineer-led teams, and an initial approach to the project as demonstrated in the preliminary statement of approach for the project.

SELECTION PANEL: A selection panel will be convened by the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture in August.  Panel members will include staff of the funding department, project consultants, artists and arts professionals.  Non-voting advisors to the panel may include the consulting project architect or engineer, and additional city staff.  The role of the Public Art Program staff is to facilitate the selection process. The final recommendation of the selection panel will be reviewed by the Public Art Committee; the Phoenix Arts and Culture Commission; a subcommittee of the City Council; and the Mayor and City Council prior to the award of contract.


Friday, July 11th                 Pre-Submission meeting

Friday, August 8th             Application deadline

Varies                                    Initial Selection Meeting

Varies                                    Finalist Interviews and Panel Recommendation

Varies                                    City approval process and Award of Contract

PRESUBMISSION MEETING: An optional presubmission meeting to learn about the Phoenix Public Art Program and to obtain additional information about these projects will be held Friday, July 11th in City Hall in Assembly Room A. Attendance is not required but may be useful in preparing a submission, especially for artists new to public art. Attendance is free but or call (602) 495-0191 (or via City of Phoenix TTY Relay at 602-534-5500) to confirm attendance and make any requests for reasonable accommodations.

AND GUIDELINES: The Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture reserves the right, as its best interests may appear, to reject any or all applications or proposals, to reject any finalist, to waive informalities in applications or proposals, or to terminate the selection process for any project without prior notice.  The Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture reserves the right to make selections from the Juried Slide Registry in addition to submitted applications or in the event that insufficient or inappropriate applications are received or to terminate any project at any time.  Application to any project advertised by the Phoenix Office of Art and Culture constitutes agreement to all applicable rules and guidelines.  A complete copy of the rules and guidelines is available at  To receive a printed copy, call the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture at (602) 262-4637.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: For additional information on this project, or for a copy of this publication in an alternate format, contact :

Kevin Vaughan-Brubaker

Public Art Project Manager

(602) 495-0191

OR Through City of 
Phoenix TTY Relay at (602) 534-5500.”

1 Comment »

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