Welcome Race Fans 2022: "Back Home Again" Seeks Artists

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Welcome Race Fans 2022: "Back Home Again" Seeks Artists


Welcome Race Fans 2022: “Back Home Again” Seeks Artists

Call to Artists – Request for Qualifications (RFQ)

Project Title: Welcome Race Fans 2022: “Back Home Again”

Budget (per artist): $2,000 total ($1,500 original artwork commission, $500 licensing fee.)

Deadline for Submissions: Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022 at 5 p.m. (ET)

Program Specifics

With the wide-ranging success of the inaugural Welcome Race Fans collaboration between the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Indy Arts Council to incorporate Indiana artists and original artwork into the past six running’s of the Indy 500, the Indy Arts Council and Indianapolis Motor Speedway are pleased to announce Welcome Race Fans 2022: Back Home Again!

The original Welcome Race Fans concept called for the commission of 33 paintings by 33 Indiana artists to celebrate a once-in-a-lifetime event, the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500. In the second year of Welcome Race Fans, the field of artists was narrowed to 5, but the mission of the program was the same: to highlight one of the most visible and iconic visuals associated with May in Indianapolis – the blanketing of the city with “Welcome Race Fans” signs. The art program garnered attention from news media regionally and nationally as well as interest from other cities and racetracks around the country including Texas Motor Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, and the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. Out of the 58 original artworks created over the last six years, 17 have been sold to new patrons with 100% of the proceeds from the sale of these artworks going directly to the artists.

NEW in 2022: In an effort to build on the success of the previous six years, we are announcing this year’s program will celebrate the pageantry of the Indianapolis 500. Selected artists will be asked to consider the theme of this year’s race in their artwork: “Back Home Again.” What does the return of “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” with full grandstands mean for our city and fans around the world?

This May, for the first time in three years, a crowd of more than 300,000 will fill the vast grandstands for the 106th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge on Sunday, May 29, 2022. It’s time to unleash that anticipation for one of the biggest homecoming celebrations in all of sports. “Back Home Again” isn’t just a song. It’s an anthem for a community of millions that has turned the melody into its mantra. This May, it’s time to come Back to Together Again. It’s time to come Back to The Spectacle. It’s time to come Back Home Again.

This year’s program will consist of five artists creating a welcoming sign in their own unique materials, process, and style. As with previous years, racing imagery need NOT be included in the final artwork. However, if the artist chooses to include racing imagery, it should not be specific to a particular race, but rather, should reflect the overarching racing culture that is so prevalent in Indianapolis. That same culture that celebrates motorsports in general and its significant impact on our city can be incorporated into the artwork. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway will provide the selected artists visual representations for this year’s marketing theme to support their efforts of connecting racing with the arts.

All participating artists will retain ownership and copyright in their work, however, during the months of May, June and early July 2022, original artworks will appear in key locations around the city and will be installed during key race events at the Racing Capital of the World. In addition, reproductions of artworks will be used to create various print media including but not limited to: larger-than-life vinyl installations on the Artsgarden, Central Indiana, Main Street in Speedway and other buildings, billboards, banners, and lastly, limited edition commemorative posters/items, which will be shared with the community as visual reminders of the highly visible collaboration of art & motorsports. Artists will be given credit on any reproductions of their artwork.

To learn more about the program and see the wide range of artworks commissioned, visit www.WelcomeRaceFansIndy.org.

Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for this program, artists must:

  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Work as a professional artist or artist team
  • Live in or have very strong ties to central Indiana
  • Be willing to meet all contractual obligations and adhere to a strict timeline
  • Artists from previous rounds of Welcome Race Fans are welcome to re-apply.

Artwork Considerations and Requirements

Artists will be asked to create an artwork with imagery and materials of their choosing.  The imagery does not necessarily need to be racing related. This project is meant to showcase the original styles of Indiana artists while welcoming visitors to Indy for the citywide celebration of the 106th Running through the Brickyard Weekend. Though racing imagery is not a requirement, if you choose to include it, the Indy Arts Council and Indianapolis Motor Speedway will advise artists on how to properly use copyrighted photos and other material with required permissions.

Completed artwork should adhere to the following standards:

  • NEW FOR 2022: Measurements:  A height to width ratio of 2:3 with 16” x 24” being the smallest and 24” x 36” being the largest. Any framing should not increase the overall size by more than .5”.
  • NEW FOR 2022: Required text: The words “Back Home Again” (without quotes) must appear in the artwork and must be placed horizontally. You may choose to use all uppercase (EXAMPLE) or title case lettering (Example Two). Uppercase letters should be at least 6” tall. A good list of typography and hand-lettering resources is found at: http://gomedia.com/zine/insights/best-resources-for-typography-and-hand-lettering Those artists who are not accustomed to working with text in their artwork should consult the ACI staff for support.
  • Weight: No more than 30 lbs.
  • Hanging: Must be delivered ready to hang using picture wire, D-rings, or other standard methods.
  • Materials: Artists are not limited to 2D materials, however, any 3D elements should not protrude more than 3” from the wall when hung.
  • Framing: If your artwork needs framing to be protected, frames should be minimal and simple. The Indy Arts Council will discuss framing with the artists selected to participate.
  • Content: Artwork should be appropriate for all audiences.

Selection Process

Once qualifications are received from interested artists, representatives from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway will assist the Indy Arts Council Artist Services and Public Art team in reviewing artists’ qualifications and making artist selections. Selected artists will be notified shortly thereafter.


The artist fee for the project is a flat $2,000 per artist. ($1,500 for the commissioning of an original work of art, and $500 for the licensing of the artwork for reproduction purposes.)

Artists are expected to cover all expenses for materials, supplies, labor, photography, and equipment needed to complete and ship/deliver their artwork and a high-quality digital photograph of it for reproduction purposes. The fee also includes compensation for licensing the Indy Arts Council to reproduce the artwork as part of the project, including the aforementioned print media. Neither the Indy Arts Council nor the Indianapolis Motor Speedway will profit directly from any reproductions of the artist’s work.

All original “Back Home Again” artworks should be for sale. The Indy Arts Council staff will make every effort to try to sell the artwork during the program, and will not take a commission if artwork is sold. Artists will receive 100% of the sale price of the artwork.  The Indy Arts Council and Indianapolis Motor Speedway will direct potential patrons to WelcomeRaceFansIndy.org to learn more about you and your work.

Project Timeline

The project will follow this timeline:

Dec. 17, 2022 – Request for Qualifications Released

January 18, 2022, 5 p.m. EST – Request for Qualifications Deadline

By Jan. 24, 2022 – Arts Council Notifies Artists of Selection

Thru Feb. 7, 2022 – Sketch Review. Artists will send in rough, preliminary sketches for approval. Turning in sketches earlier during this window is encouraged, as it will allow for more time for the artist to complete the final artwork.

By March 25, 2022 – Completed “Back Home Again” artworks are dropped off or shipped to the Indy Arts Council office to arrive by this date.

Late April – early July 2022 – “Back Home Again” artworks are displayed in key Indianapolis locations and beginning the last two weeks in May will be installed at selection locations around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.  Print media and other artwork reproduction materials will be distributed or installed around the city.

May 29, 2022 – 106th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge

July 31, 2022 – Verizon 200 at the Brickyard

Mid July 2022 – Anticipated return of original artworks to artists

Submission Process

Apply online at https://indyarts.formstack.com/forms/wrf_2022. You will be able to start your application and come back to it later if needed. The form will be able to be completed using a phone.

You will need to provide:

  • Your legal name, and any preferred artist names you work under
  • Your contact information (land mail address, email address, and phone number; social media handles optional)
  • Names of any proposed collaborators or artist team members
  • Images of past work relevant to this project
    • If you have a website, you can provide a link to it so we can review your work
    • Instagram or other social media account links you provide should be dedicated to showcasing your artwork–please do not link to your personal social media!
    • If you do not have a website, please attach between 5 and 10 examples of relevant past work to the application form.
      • Attachments can be individual GIFs, JPG/JPEG, PNG, BMP, TIF, or PSD images. NOTE: Total uploaded files may not exceed 25 MB.
  • OPTIONAL: You may provide your demographic information to help us ensure equity in our programming.

All images should be professional quality photographs of your work. If you need a referral to a professional photographer who specializes in working with artists, please view the Artist Resources Directory at http://indyarts.org/resources/category/vendors-list

Delivery of Submissions

All required materials must be received by Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. (ET).

Contact Information

Kate Oberreich

For more information about the Indy Arts Council, please visit www.indyarts.org.