Public art may not be front of mind as you’re rushing between buildings in this winter weather, but don’t let the cold stop you from keeping up with open calls for artwork to beautify city spaces! To make things easier, we’ve rounded up a few upcoming opportunities with deadlines this winter. The New York City Department of Transportation, the Lower East Side Partnership, the Department of Cultural Affairs, and NYC Parks are all seeking artists to send proposals for artwork. Read on for details and how to apply.
The NYC Department of Cultural Affairs is seeking artists interested in creating a public monument to replace a recently removed statue of J. Marion Sims. The commission is part of the Beyond Sims effort to transcend Sims’ legacy of performing medical experimentation on women of color, and to reinterpret the site where his sculpture formerly stood at 103rd Street and Fifth Avenue in East Harlem. The new permanent public artwork will be installed in 2020, with community conversations already underway to help inform the selected artist in conceiving of the monument. Professional visual artists or teams of artists working in any media are eligible to apply by February 9.
The New York City Department of Transportation invites community-based nonprofit organizations and professional artists to submit proposals for artwork to be presented on DOT property for up to 11 months. The DOT has five program tracks for projects based on types of sites designated for artwork. Most programs offer funds for materials as well as engineering support for installation, and are open to muralists, sculptors, and other types of installations depending on the project. Visual artists can beautify street barriers and pedestrian areas, build sculptures for roundabouts and other public spaces, create murals for construction fences, or conceive of other ideas for site-specific projects. Specific priority sites have been chosen for Community Commissions, including a sidewalk at the Broadway Junction intersection of Fulton Street and Van Sinderen Avenue in Brooklyn. Community Commissions is the only project with a call open now (with a February 15 deadline), but you can find photos of past artwork and details about projects with deadlines to be announced later in the year on the DOT’s website.
The Lower East Side Partnership has issued an open call for artists and collaboratives to submit proposals for a mural at the new Essex Street Market location. The mural will be located on a 32′ by 22′ wall inside the market that is visible from the street, and the organization hopes to work with an artist who has a connection to the area and will incorporate the legacy and sentiment of the 79-year-old market. The new location, which will be three times the size of the current market space, will be on the south side of Delancey at Essex Street and is set to open this spring. The selected artist will receive funding for materials, insurance, and fees including assistants or team members. Proposals are due by February 18.
NYC Parks accepts proposals for temporary artwork in the the city’s parks on a rolling basis. Installations may last from two weeks to one year, but typically projects remain on view for three to six months. A limited number of mural proposals are approved, and applicants are encouraged to consider temporary mounting options for 2-D work such as plywood or vinyl banners. While any park in the city can host artwork, NYC Parks has compiled a list of well-trafficked sites around the city that would be especially good sites for new projects. You can also visit the NYC Parks website to see current and past artworks supported by the Art in the Parks program, which has been around since 1967.
Looking for more opportunities? Visit our website for artist opportunities including residencies, open calls, and available space!