50th Anniversary Public Art Project

50TH Anniversary Beautification Project 
Call to Artists
Submission Deadline:  4:00pm on Friday, March 15, 2019

West side of Classen Blvd, divider between NW 9TH and 7TH streets

Project Overview

Oklahoma City Beautiful, a 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to improve the image and appearance of Oklahoma City through education, programs and community engagement, invites artists to submit their qualifications for an outdoor, public art work on the elevated divider on Classen Boulevard.  The work sought is original, portrays the unique character of the area, known as "Corridor of Hope", and exemplifies Oklahoma City Beautiful’s mission.  The selected artist(s) will be commissioned to design, permit, fabricate and successfully install a public art work on the divider wall facing west on Classen between NW 9th and 7th streets. 

This project is open to collaborative submissions and encourages diversity of approaches.  The public art work is conceived as being two-dimensional, but three-dimensional work with minimal protrusions meeting all local laws, rules and ordinances will be considered.   The public art work should visually activate as much of the wall as possible, but negative space may be proposed.  The public art work may be representational or abstract.  However, proposed designs should resonate with a diverse audience.  The selection committee is interested in original and unique ideas for this site.  Interested applicants are encouraged to visit the site before submitting their qualifications.


This call for proposals is open to all artists 18 years of age and older living in the State of Oklahoma.  If artists are applying as a team, the team should be listed on the application, clearly specifying a team leader to receive notifications. 


The $32,000 budget will include the artist fee, all labor and materials, insurance, transportation, engineering, permits, and tool expense to design, fabricate, and install the selected work of art plus an identifying art marker integral to the work. The public art work will be considered permanent, unless the permit is revoked by the City of Oklahoma City.  

Selection Criteria

The following four criteria are considered in the first round of the selection process:
1. Artistic excellence, originality, and ability to produce a consistent body of work, as evidenced by representation of past work in images and other supporting materials
2. Experience with projects of a similar scale and scope
3. Appropriateness of artist/curator’s approach and style to the project’s intent and site
4. Price and current market value of artist(s)’ work in relation to the scope and value contemplated for this commission

The following criteria are considered in the final round of the selection process:
1. Availability to work within project time frame and to be apply for and be present in Oklahoma City for any required neighborhood or public meetings
2. Technical knowledge of the artist to address all design review and permitting requirements for the project
3. Good work habits: ability to meet deadlines, experience with budgeting, good communication skills, good problem-solving abilities—as supported by references
4. Important consideration will also be given to: safety, accessibility, durability, maintenance, requirements, permanence of materials, protection against vandalism, and timelessness of the artwork proposed
5. Design must contribute to the architectural and cultural heritage of the surrounding neighborhood and commercial corridor
6. Design must reflect the local customs, styles or cultural attitudes of neighborhood and commercial corridor and provide a sense of place
7. Other criteria as may be established by the selection committee.

Artist applications will be evaluated to determine whether the artist(s) involved possess the creativity, technical skills, and discipline required for this public art project

Project Timeline

The following schedule is proposed for this project.  Please note that Oklahoma City Beautiful reserves the right, as deemed necessary, at their sole discretion to adjust this schedule. 

Submissions due: 4:00pm on Friday, March 15, 2019
Notification to Finalists: Monday, April 1, 2019
Mandatory Site Tour: Friday, May 3, 2019
Finalist Interviews: Friday, June 7,  2019
Notification of Selection: Friday, June 14, 2019
Contracting Period: June 15-30, 2019
Reviews, Permitting, Engineering Approval, Fabrication, Installation: July-August, 2019
Installation and Final Inspection: Fall 2019

How to Apply

To fully respond to this Request for Qualifications you will send the following information by email to [email protected] or deliver on a flash drive in person to Oklahoma City Beautiful Offices at 3535 N. Classen Boulevard in Oklahoma City prior to the 4:00:00 pm, March 15, 2019 deadline established in this announcement. All files must be in PDF format. Pages documents will not be accepted: convert them to PDF. Put identifying information on each document (not images) that is submitted: your name, email, and phone number.

  • Letter of Interest - Sample letter below. Please provide no more than one page letter of interest.
  • Resume - Include a current professional resume for each artist, emphasizing public art experience. 
  • Six digital JPG images of COMPLETED WORK per team member - No Renderings or proposals will be accepted. Resolution of approximately 1800 X 1200 pixels (4”X6” at 300dpi/ppi). Images should not exceed 1800 pixels. Review your images against the Image ID Sheet to ensure that the images you submit are numbered in the same order as the information on the Image ID sheet. Sample Image ID Sheet below.  You will create a similar form and include a thumbnail image beside the corresponding image information. The six images will be reviewed by the selection committee. The initial committee review is “blind”, requiring that no identifying information or the artist/curator or anything but the artwork itself should appear on the images. 
Selection Process

The committee will evaluate all RFI submissions and choose up to three finalists for the project.  Finalists will be invited to a mandatory site tour, and to a final jury meeting at which they will present their conceptual design report to the selection committee. The conceptual design report must include:

  • Illustrations and/or models of the proposed design
  • A detailed project budget
  • Installation/production details (surface prep, on site equipment, proposed timeline)
  • A maintenance plan with an estimate of costs to maintain the proposed work
  • A one page, one paragraph artist statement about proposed work
  • Statement about any conflicts in schedule for project

Finalists who attend both meetings and present proposals will be paid a fee of $750 to include all design fees, materials, transportation, and any other costs or fees associated with competing in the final selection phase. These fees are usually processed and paid by OKC Beautiful within four weeks of the final jury.

Additional Information

Selected artist will be required to provide:

1. A certificate of insurance for worker’s compensation and liability coverage; or, statement of self-insurance. Insurance must be in place prior to entering location for the purpose of completing the Work and until final acceptance of the Work by Oklahoma City Beautiful and The City of Oklahoma City.
2. General Commercial Liability Insurance with responsible insurance underwriters acceptable to Oklahoma City Beautiful and The City of Oklahoma City  insuring both parties and Artist against all legal liability for injuries to persons caused by Artist’s use and occupancy of the premises or otherwise caused by Artist’s activities and operations on said premises, with liability limits of not less than those established in the Governmental Tort Claims Act, 51 Oklahoma Statues § 151 et seq., for accidental and personal injury.  Currently, those limits are $175,000 for a claim for any other loss arising out of a single act, accident, or occurrence; $25,000 for a loss of property; and $1,000,000 for any number of claims arising out of any single occurrence or accident.  Artist shall furnish Oklahoma City Beautiful and The City of Oklahoma City with a certificate of such insurance which shall list both parties as additional insured under said policy or policies and insurer shall provide notice thirty days prior to cancellation.
3. A release of Artist’s rights of attribution and integrity generally conferred by Section 106A(a) of Title 17 of the U.S. Code (The Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990, “VARA”), and any other rights of the same nature granted by other federal, state or foreign laws. See form below.


Specific questions may be sent to Lisa Synar at [email protected] or 405-525-8822.  If yours is a question that might be pertinent to all artists invited to submit proposal, the questions will by anonymously shared with all interested parties so that everyone has the same information available while applying.