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Sunday, November 27, 2016

Call to Artists: City in Motion Outdoor Temporary Sculpture Exhibition, Roanoke, VA

AIR (Art in Roanoke) in Elmwood Park
Call Date November 4, 2016

Deadline for Entries: February 6, 2017

Project Description:
The Roanoke Arts Commission (RAC) is seeking up to nine artists to exhibit in the fourth AIR: (Art in Roanoke), a temporary sculpture exhibition running May 16, 2017 through November 15, 2018.  This is NOT a postmark deadline. The RAC is accepting submissions now through 5:00 PM February 6, 2017 from experienced artists for freestanding sculpture. Artwork may incorporate interactive as well as functional elements.  This invitation is extended to all artists 18 and older regardless of where they live.  In addition to finished pieces, proposed work will also be considered.  An identification plaque will be provided for each work.  The RAC will also produce publicity materials and will promote the exhibition with local media.

All artwork will be sited in Elmwood Park, a pocket of nature and vibrant urban space, in downtown Roanoke. 

Since purchased by the city in 1910, Elmwood Park has been a gathering place where people enjoy a concert, the outdoors or spend quiet time.  Today it is well known as Roanoke’s premiere festival park with more than 50 annual events. It is also the home of the city’s main library. 2013 improvements included a new amphitheater and stage, interactive fountains, an arbor, terraces off the back of the library and the Art Walk. An interactive playground with a Peter Pan theme is also in the park. Photos and drawings of the site can be viewed at under “current calls to artists”.
Information about the previous Elmwood exhibit can be viewed at

The theme of the show is City in Motion. Roanoke was born out of transportation and continues to be on the move.  Downtown revitalization has led to a renaissance over the last 25 years, and downtown living has increased to over 2,000 residents.  With the recently announced expansion of the VA Tech Medical School and Research Institute and several craft breweries moving to the area, the City of Roanoke is on the move and the art in Elmwood should reflect that motion.

Guidelines for Submitted Works:
Works submitted must be of a scale and material suitable for outdoor display.  All proposed works should be designed to withstand an outdoor, high traffic, unmonitored environment. They should require little or no maintenance for the duration of the show. They must be original and suitable for family viewing. The works must be constructed so that they can be securely anchored. 

The Art Walk includes ten pads surrounded by native plantings.  Each pad is 7’ by 7’ and can hold up to 1,500 lbs. Work cannot be over 15’ tall and 6’ wide. Anchor bolts are required and must be set at least six inches from the edges of the pads.

Payments and Awards:
There is no entry fee. Artists chosen to participate will receive a stipend of up to $4,000 per selected artwork.  All stipends are payable in one lump sum upon completion of the installation and receipt of an invoice. In addition, one artist will receive a $1,000 Best in Show Award. Voting will take place the weekend of Festival in the Park, one of the major festivals held in the park on Memorial Day weekend, May 26-28, 2017.

Costs associated with transportation of the piece, travel of the artist, insurance during travel and installation, installation and removal of the work are the responsibility of the artist. 
The city will provide pads and installation support as feasible.
Completed installation must pass city inspection, meeting all safety requirements.

Artists whose projects are accepted will be required to sign a loan agreement, a sample of which is posted on line.

Please note information and photos of the site are on the web at

Entry Procedures:
Each artist may submit a total of up to three completed sculptures or proposed pieces for consideration. 

To apply, please submit the following in this order:

  • One CD or flash drive with Digital images (no slides accepted).  Each work may be represented by up to three digital images, showing different views of the finished piece or of a model or drawings of the concept.  Digital images should be saved as JPGs on a CD or thumb drive (not DVD) and be as close to 900 x 900 pixels as possible.  All digital images should be clearly labeled with name of artist and title of artwork. A total of no more than nine images may be submitted. If more are submitted only the first nine will be reviewed.
  • Eight copies - Completed cover sheet as attached
  • Eight copies - Image identification list indicating name, title, medium, dimensions (HxWxD), and sale price (if the piece is for sale)
  • Eight Copies - If submitting a proposal please include a one-page description with drawings and/or an image of a maquette.
  • Eight copies – Illustrated drawing of how the piece will be anchored to the pad
  • Eight Copies - Current resume (no longer than two pages)

How to submit materials:
·       Attach only the items requested at this time
·       Submit the requested information as eight “sets of information” (a set contains one copy of each item requested) stapled together.
·       Do not insert sets in folders or binders. The top page of each set must be the application cover sheet.

  • Responses due by 5:00 PM on February 6, 2017. Late responses will not be considered.
  • Chosen artists notified no later than February 28, 2017
  • Installation completed by May 16, 2017 – can be scheduled up to two weeks before May 16, 2017
  • Works picked up by November 30, 2018

Selection Process:
A panel representing diverse interests and expertise will review submissions and recommend up to nine artists to the Roanoke Arts Commission. The following criteria will be used:
  • The artist’s past experience with such installations
  • Quality and design of the art work or proposal
  • Appropriateness of the art work to the City in Motion theme
  • Appropriateness for the site, including aesthetic content and public safety
  • Feasibility given timeline and budget
  • Durability – The art work’s ability to withstand weather and interaction in a highly public area over the 18-month course of the exhibition
  • Other criteria not outlined above may be considered as well.

Artwork Sale Opportunity:
Sale of installed works will be encouraged.  Sale arrangements will be handled between the buyer and the artist. It is understood that work will remain on display for the entire exhibit.
In the past, the City of Roanoke has purchased four works from the three previous AIR exhibitions.

Please submit all materials by 5:00 PM on February 6, 2017 to:

Susan Jennings
Arts and Culture Coordinator
Department of Economic Development
117 Church Avenue
Roanoke, VA 24011

For more information contact:
Susan Jennings at or call 540-853-5652

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