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Palo Alto Seeks Artists for 2018-2020 Public Art Commissions

Posted by City of Palo Alto ; Posted on 
Public Art; Visual - DEADLINE :  
Palo Alto Seeks Artists for 2018-2020 Public Art Commissions



The City of Palo Alto Public Art Program invites artists and artist teams working in a variety of visual media and artistic approaches to submit qualifications for potential inclusion in a Prequalified Artist Pool for upcoming public art opportunities. A list of eligible artists selected for the Prequalified Pool will be used by the Palo Alto Public Art Program staff to recommend appropriate applicants for a range of permanent and temporary public art opportunities.

Most public art commissions will be associated with municipal and private development projects as they arise throughout Palo Alto during the years 2018 – 2020. Artists may submit existing artworks for consideration for temporary display within the City. Social practice and performance artists are also welcome to apply for temporary public art initiatives. Artists invited to be part of the Prequalified Pool will be selected based on appropriateness of their previous experience and artistic excellence. Some projects may also provide opportunities for an artist or artist team to work as part of a design team along with the project architect/designer.  Inclusion in the Prequalified Artist Pool does not guarantee selection for any projects.

BUDGET:  Project budgets range from $15,000 to $600,000

ELIGIBILITY:  Professional artists and artist teams over the age of 18 residing in the United States; international artists obtaining a US work permit

DEADLINE:  September 23, 2018 11:59 p.m. PST

Selection Process

The applications will be first pre-screened by the Public Art Program staff for the minimum eligibility criteria listed below:

  • Complete application submitted prior to the application deadline.
  • The submitted application demonstrates evidence of professional competence. Eligible artists may have a record of successfully completed permanent and/or temporary public art commissions in public and/or private development, exhibition history, education and training as an artist.

Selection Criteria

Public art staff will use the following criteria to select successful applicants for specific commission opportunities:

  • Artistic excellence: demonstrated mastery of skills and appropriateness of media and artistic concepts.
  • Appropriate materials and durability of artwork: demonstrated ability to create artwork using lasting materials that are appropriate for a public space while addressing its unique physical and / or community context.
  • Demonstrated ability to complete public art projects of a similar budget and scale.
  • Experience working with diverse groups of stakeholders: experience or interest in creating public artwork in collaboration with architects, design teams, community representatives and/or private developers.

All artists approved for inclusion in the prequalified pool will be notified by the Public Art Program staff in writing. Selected artists must maintain an active account in SlideRoom for a two-year period. Inclusion in the prequalified artist pool does not guarantee selection for any projects. The Public Art Program may put out additional calls for specific public art opportunities as needed. Eligible applicants will be reviewed and selected for any appropriate public art opportunities in municipal and private development as they arise in 2018/2020.

Artists will be contacted prior to any selection panel process to confirm their interest and availability for a particular commission opportunity. For municipal projects, the project selection panels consist of City staff, a Public Art Commissioner, arts professionals and appropriate project stakeholders.

How to Apply

All applications must be submitted online via SlideRoom (, an online application system for artist calls. There is no application fee for artists to submit their application using SlideRoom. Applications that are submitted via email, post, fax or in person won’t be considered. Once accepted into the Prequalified Pool, applicants may update their bank of submitted images during the 2-year period by contacting staff.

Artists will be required to create a username and password and set up an account. All submitted application information, including artist’s resume, images of previous projects and annotated descriptions will be automatically archived and saved and can be accessed by the Public Art staff in the future. All applicants should allow adequate time to submit their applications, and we recommend that you complete your application well ahead of the deadline in case of complications. SlideRoom technical support is available at Application deadline: September 23, 2018 at 11:59pm (PST).

All applications should include the following:

  1. Artist Statement should outline your interests describe your art practice, provide a summary of your professional experience as an artist, and address how that experience may qualify you for public art commissions . If applying as a team: please clarify collaborations and outline roles. Character Limit: 3000 (approx. 500 words).
  2. Current Resume, including public art commission, exhibition and publication history (team resume if applying as a team. Character limit: 8000 (approx. 1300 words).
  3. Artistic discipline. Artists and artist teams working in more than one discipline may indicate all disciplines they work in. SlideRoom will provide a form with a range of disciplines and relevant media.
  4. Five (5) Images of previous work including most recent commissions and realized projects. Please submit only successfully completed projects or renderings for projects that are in process. Please label renderings as such. Please do not submit proposal renderings that were not selected for implementation.
  5. Annotated image descriptions including title, date, location, materials, art budget, and a brief description (up to 5 sentences). For team application, please indicate the lead artist for each project.

QUESTIONS?  Contact Nadya Chuprina, City of Palo Alto Public Art Program:


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