The Arts Council of Indianapolis, in partnership with Keep Indianapolis Beautiful (KIB), is requesting qualifications from artists or artist-led teams who are interested in creating outdoor mosaic artwork for a community greenspace.
BUDGET: $30,000 (for the mosaic artwork only; substrate to be provided separately)
ELIGIBILITY: Professional artists (or artist/tradeworker teams) over 18 and living in Indiana; preference given to teams with members living within 2 miles of the project site
DEADLINE: January 24, 2020, 5:00 p.m. EDT
Apply online here.
KIB’s IPL Project GreenSpace is a grassroots-driven effort that helps transform vacant lots and underused spaces into natural, beautiful and functional pocket parks. As part of the 2020 initiative, public art will be incorporated into a new park planned as a revitalization of the former Forest Manor Athletic Association Ball Fields on the east side of Indianapolis.
This year, selected GreenSpace projects will receive public art as part of Indy Art & Seek, a collaboration between KIB and the Arts Council of Indianapolis to install 100 temporary and 6 permanent works of art in Indianapolis’ neighborhoods, and to provide a “scavenger hunt” experience of the installed works to the public through a smartphone app. Art & Seek is part of the Lilly Endowment, Inc.’s Strengthening Indianapolis through Arts & Culture Innovation initiative.
ABOUT THE COMMUNITY
The project site is on the border of the Forest Manor and Martindale-Brightwood neighborhoods on the east side of Indianapolis. Both communities are within the 46218 zip code, known for producing such luminaries as Willa Beatrice Brown Chappell (the first Black woman to earn a US commercial pilot’s license), Barbara Boyd (Indiana’s first female broadcaster, first Black news anchor, and first Black female news anchor), Julia Carson (the first Black individual to represent Indianapolis in Congress) and her grandson, current U.S. Representative Andre Carson, Father Boniface Hardin (the founder of Indianapolis’ Martin University and noted first-person Frederick Douglass interpreter), Wes Montgomery (nationally known, Indianapolis-born jazz guitarist), and basketball great Oscar Robertson.
Forest Manor’s eastern boundary is Emerson Avenue, its northern boundary is 42nd St., its western boundary is Sherman Ave., and its southern boundary is 34th St. The closing of the non-profit Forest Manor Multi-Service Center in 2017 has left residents in its former service area to self-organize for mutual benefit, primarily through local churches. This project’s leadership, Community On Patrol Serving (C.O.P.S.), is one such group: a coalition of neighbors and local institutions working together to support and improve the Forest Manor neighborhood, led by Pastor Donald Edwards, Jr. of Church of Glory. Today, 92% of Forest Manor residents are people of color and 80% are considered low to moderate income.
Martindale-Brightwood is located just south of Forest Manor, with its eastern boundary at Emerson Avenue, its northern boundary at 34th St., its western boundary at Sutherland Avenue and the Monon Trail, and its southern boundary at I-70. Founded in the 1870s, Martindale-Brightwood began as two settlements: Brightwood, a booming railroad center that attracted mostly white immigrants, and Martindale, a blue collar community where many of the city’s African Americans were forced to settle due to redlining and other restrictive policies. Both towns were annexed by Indianapolis before 1900. The closing of rail service, shuttering of industrial facilities, and geographic split of the community by Interstate construction in the 1960s led to depopulation and loss of services. Today, 94% of Martindale-Brightwood residents are people of color and nearly 100% are considered low to moderate income.
ABOUT THE SITE
The former Forest Manor Athletic Association Ball Fields is located at 3304 Forest Manor Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46218. Users of the site are drawn from the southern edge of the Forest Manor neighborhood and the northern edge of the Martindale-Brightwood neighborhood. The site is owned by Miracles and Blessings Church but is open to the community. It is no longer actively used for baseball activity, but the neighborhood occasionally uses the basketball court. (please note: this is NOT the ball field located in Indy Parks’ Forest Manor Park—it is a completely different space)
The neighborhood has been actively cleaning up the ball fields, and plans to upgrade the space with KIB’s assistance to create a clean, safe place for the community to host neighborhood programs and events, and to be able to spend time together outside. Plans include walking trails, a kickball field, improved basketball facilities, new trees, new benches and bleachers, rehabilitation of the ball field dugout, and a community mural at the former concession stand and storage shed. (the community mural will be executed by a previously-selected, neighborhood-based artist and is not part of the current scope of work)
The Memorial Rock Garden, an integral element of the upgrade, will pay tribute to community members who have lost their lives to gun violence. An existing chain link fence separating the property from the street will be removed and a wall feature will be installed to become a signature element of the garden while still maintaining safety for the garden users from street traffic. Other elements in the garden (not part of the artist’s scope of work) include natural and painted boulders and decorative bricks bearing the names of the people honored. These elements are planned to be added over time.
ABOUT THE ARTWORK
The largest part of the planned garden wall measures 32 ft. long x 4 ft high and is intended to have mosaic art on both the street side and the garden side. The maximum amount of space to be covered by mosaic is 256 square feet. Artists can choose to selectively cover the wall with mosaic in a creative manner, using the materials and texture of the wall as a design element.
The commissioned artist may have the opportunity to participate in the design of the wall feature, which includes elements of a large solid wall plus (potentially) separated posts to create a permeable barrier.
The community has expressed the desire for the mosaic on the Memorial Garden wall to have bright colors and to incorporate highly-colored, natural stones in addition to ceramic and glass elements. They would like the wall to express the vibrancy of the neighborhood, with possible pictorial elements and some three-dimensional interest. The imagery on the street side of the wall can be different from the imagery on the garden side of the wall; the interior of the wall can be a more abstract, pattern-based design while the exterior can be more pictorial.
The expectation is for the artist to actively engage the community to help determine the design of the wall’s imagery and, possibly, to assist in fabricating and installing the mosaic.
Members of the Arts Council’s Public Art Selection Committee, with representatives from KIB and C.O.P.S., will review artists’ qualifications and recommend two or three finalists. The finalists will discuss their qualifications and preliminary thoughts with the full C.O.P.S. project team, who will make the final selection. Once identified, the artist will be contracted to work further with KIB, C.O.P.S., and the Forest Manor community to refine and finalize the wall design and the artwork concept before fabrication and installation.
The Public Art Selection Committee consists of prominent experts in their respective fields and includes artists, arts advocates, curators, administrators, and other arts and community development specialists.
Finalists will be selected based upon the following criteria:
Artistic quality: artist’s past work shows that they develop creative and stylistically distinctive works of art
Aesthetic sensibility: artist’s work and working method indicates an approach and style that would be appreciated by the Forest Manor and Martindale-Brightwood neighborhoods
Technical ability: artist’s submission indicates skill with materials and techniques similar to those that would be required for this project
Experience: artist’s submission has indicated familiarity with clients and conditions similar to those that would be used on this project (including prior substantive community engagement experience), or has demonstrated the ability on past projects to quickly acquire the skills needed to be successful on a project similar to this one
Process: artist’s submission indicates that they are eager to work collaboratively with the project team, and that the project will be completed on time and within the given budget
No designs are required as part of the artist’s application materials!
To apply for this project, provide your contact information, your background as an artist, and samples of your work.
All applications, work samples, and sharing requests must be received by 5:00 p.m. on January 24, 2020. Allow plenty of time to prepare and submit your information, and if you have difficulty, please contact Julia Moore, firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
To apply online:
To mail or hand-deliver applications:
Artists may choose instead to submit all their information on ONE CD or flash drive. CDs or drives must ARRIVE at the Arts Council before 5:00 p.m. on Friday, January 24, 2020.
If you plan to submit on a CD or flash drive, please contact Julia Moore, email@example.com to obtain an editable version of the application form to submit with your other materials.
CD or flash drive submissions may be hand-delivered or mailed to:
Arts Council of Indianapolis
Attn: KIB C.O.P.S. Project
924 N. Pennsylvania Street
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204-1021
DELIVERY OF SUBMISSIONS
The applicant information form PLUS all supplementary emails or sharing requests, regardless of submission method, must be timestamped by 5:00 p.m. (Eastern) on Friday, January 24, 2020. Information timestamped after 5:00 p.m. will not be reviewed.
QUESTIONS? Contact Julia Moore, Director of Public Art, Arts Council of Indianapolis, firstname.lastname@example.org or (317) 631-3301 x240
Note to Applicants
This Request for Qualifications does not constitute an offer to contract or a promise for remuneration, recognition, or any other benefit to the applicant. Submission of materials in response to this Request for Qualifications does not constitute an express or implied contract. The information provided, and/or any program or event described, may be changed, amended, modified, or canceled at any time and for any reason. The Arts Council of Indianapolis reserves the right to accept or reject any and all responses received, or to commission an artist through another process, with the goal of accomplishing the best result possible.
Arts Council of Indianapolis Equity Statement
The Arts Council of Indianapolis is committed to working with the arts and cultural community to cultivate a sector that serves, celebrates, and values every resident of Indianapolis. In pursuit of this vision, we do not predetermine participation on the basis of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, or religion. We see a successful arts and cultural community as one where all artists have full access to the robust creative arts resources of our city and in which their varied histories, voices, and life experiences are honored.
To read the full Arts Council Equity Statement, click here. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please contact Julia Moore at email@example.com or call 317-631-3301 x240.
Keep Indianapolis Beautiful Equity Statement
KIB helps people and nature thrive most effectively when we reflect the diversity of perspectives, voices, and abilities found throughout our city. The principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion are essential to our work—from supporting biodiversity in nature to engaging communities.
KIB encourages applicants—including persons of color, people who are LGBTQ, veterans, those who are multilingual/multicultural, and individuals of various ages and abilities—to help us create collaborations among a broad range of backgrounds and thinking.
Arts Council Fair Pay Statement
The Arts Council of Indianapolis values the experience and the skilled work created and completed by artists of all disciplines. As such, we are committed to providing fair and equitable compensation for the artists who participate in all of our projects, programs, partnerships, and collaborations. We also advocate that others in the community provide similarly fair and appropriate compensation when working with artists.
For more information about the Arts Council of Indianapolis, visit www.indyarts.org.
For more information about Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, visit www.kibi.org
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