$50K 4Culture Grant Available For Artist For Regional Trail System


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4Culture and King County’s Parks and Recreation Division are seeking a “skilled and highly-motivated planning artist” to participate in a year-long residency focused on the Regional Trail System (RTS) in which they will develop an arts master plan that includes:

  1. An overarching scheme/ethos that can help define and articulate the identity of this unique amenity;
  2. Along-term and synergistic approach to public art programming within the RTS, including the formation of concrete recommendations for the inclusion of artworks in multiple media and in specific locations.

This is not an opportunity for the planning artist to develop their own artwork.

This call for artists is open to professional artists living in Washington, Oregon, and Vancouver, BC.

According to their website:

4Culture is the cultural services agency for King County, Washington providing programs, financial support and services in the arts, public art, heritage and historic preservation for all residents and visitors in King County.

As an example, Public Art like that seen at the Burien Transit Center is from a 4Culture grant:

Here are the grant details:

WHAT: Year-long Artist’s residency focused on the Regional Trail System (RTS).

DEADLINE: Monday, Feb. 7th by 5:00 pm (PST).

BUDGET: $50,000.

INFO: Visit www.4culture.org or email [email protected], or call 206.296.4137.

From a press release:

OPPORTUNITY
4Culture and King County’s Parks and Recreation Division seek a skilled and highly-motivated planning artist to participate in a year-long residency focused on the Regional Trail System (RTS) in which they will develop an arts master plan that includes: (1) an overarching scheme/ethos that can help define and articulate the identity of this unique amenity; and (2) a long?term and synergistic approach to public art programming within the RTS, including the formation of concrete recommendations for the inclusion of artworks in multiple media and in specific locations. This is not an opportunity for the planning artist to develop their own artwork.

This holistic process should align with the Division’s strategic goals, enhance awareness and understanding of the RTS, respect and reflect local values and character, and increase a sense of ownership and connection to the RTS for the public at large. Instead of commissioning unrelated and isolated artworks and amenities, a comprehensive vision for the system and a conceptual framework – that brings both broad artistic thinking and solid understanding of the physical, social, economic and environmental context – will ensure continuity over a multi-year implementation process. Special attention should be paid to junctions between the RTS and other County properties including parks and natural areas. The selected artist will also be expected to coordinate with graphic and web design professionals to develop the master plan documentation.

In summary, the artist in residence will develop a conceptual framework and art plan for the subsequent development of public artwork that will be created as part of long-term RTS expansion. It is the intent of 4Culture to use the art plan as the foundation for County-owned public artwork implementation on the RTS for a period of approximately ten years. The plan must be broad enough to allow for other artists to generate ideas, approaches and projects, but specific enough to give strong conceptual guidelines for the artwork development and document stakeholder’s expectations and agreements regarding the art. The plan must also address the unique nature of the RTS and the role that art can play in the context of a regional network of trails. Sustainability and environmental stewardship should be considered both in process and product.

BACKGROUND
The King County Regional Trail System (RTS) is one of the nation’s most extensive multi-use off-road systems with over 175 miles of trails for bicycling, hiking, walking, and horseback riding. The RTS extends from Bothell to Auburn and Seattle to the Cascades and provides opportunities for recreation, non-motorized mobility, and commuting throughout the County. Trails like the Burke-Gilman and Sammamish River are used by thousands daily for recreation and commuting to and from Seattle and suburban cities.

We believe that artists have the ability to creatively interpret the RTS program and its impact on the region. Not only can they enhance the physical environment through the creation of site-specific artworks, but have the potential to help increase environmental awareness and stewardship efforts, uncover natural and cultural histories, attract visitors, and inspire citizens to re-imagine their relationship with the systemic network.

RESEARCH THE CLIENT
http://www.kingcounty.gov/recreation/parks.aspx

The artist’s contract will be organized into phases that correspond to project milestones. Research, concepts, and component parts should ultimately be woven together into a unified art plan. The scope of work is expected to run from April 1, 2011 through May 1, 2012. It is the intent of 4Culture that the artist is given maximum creative freedom to develop the content and final documentation of this plan, so this scope does not specify in detail the product that they are expected to deliver.

However, specific responsibilities/deliverables will include:

  • 1 year, part-time (10 hours per week) residency with Parks staff + field and studio work
  • Familiarity with Parks mission and existing RTS planning documents
  • Collaboration with Parks staff
  • Research, informational interviews, and site visits
  • Outreach and attendance at relevant community meetings
  • Documentation of process and experience on Blog 4Culture
  • Development of overarching scheme/ethos that articulates the identity of the RTS
  • Art plan in any media or means of conveyance that the artist (in consult with 4Culture) finds appropriate

Moreover, the art plan should:

  • Identify a conceptual framework and strategic opportunities as well as priorities for artwork development in multiple mediums
  • Make obvious how and where artwork can be implemented
  • Include recommendations for system-wide elements (i.e. user amenities, way finding, etc.)
  • Clearly demonstrate ideas and be innovative in content and presentation
  • Use environmentally sustainable practices in its production and dissemination
  • Be flexible enough to accommodate the dynamic nature of the RTS

ARTIST SELECTION PROCESS
We will look for a strong planning artist who can think outside of the box; inspire Parks and Recreation Division staff and the community to reach for the best and most creative solutions; and one who is sensitive to the unique qualities of the RTS and its intersections in both rural and urban environments throughout the County.

A five-person panel comprised of art and design professionals, community representatives, and Division staff will review application materials received by the deadline. Based on the selection criteria listed below, the panel will select three artists for interview. Finalists will be invited to discuss past approaches and working methods with the panel, as well as answer questions relating to working on this type of project. The selection panel will identify one artist for this opportunity.

SELECTION CRITERIA
The planning artist will be selected based on the following qualifications/criteria:

  • Artistic excellence and strong conceptual skills: One of the most valuable aspects of the artist’s participation is his or her ability to create a conceptual framework for system-wide development.
  • Strong verbal, written and graphic communication skills: This is both a residency and a planning project. Good people and planning skills are required. The artist will also be expected to participate in the translation of their final recommendations into plan materials.
  • Previous experience: This is a multifaceted project. The artist should demonstrate experience in one or more of the following: master plan development, art plan development, urban design, or the analysis of complex systems.
  • Accessibility and availability: An integral part of this project is the face-to-face time the artist will spend engaging with the Parks and Recreation Division staff. As such, it is imperative that the artist is available to begin work as of April 1, 2011 and be present in the King Street Center offices (Seattle, WA) and in the field (King County, WA) for the entirety of the year long, 10 hour per week residency.

ELIGIBILITY
This project is open to artists residing in Washington, Oregon and Vancouver, BC. 4Culture staff and its Public Art Advisory Committee members, selection panel members, King County Parks and Recreation Division personnel, and immediate family members of all of the above are not eligible to apply.

APPLICATION MATERIALS

  • Statement of interest
  • Current professional resume
  • Visual materials & corresponding annotations
  • Sample project, planning or communication document
  • Two written references

Apply online by Monday, Feb. 7th at: http://www.4culture.org/publicart/calls/index.aspx, or via mail to:

4Culture
Attn: Public Art, RTS Residency & Arts Master Planning Project
101 Prefontaine Place South
Seattle, WA 98104

QUESTIONS?
Please contact Jordan Howland: [email protected], or call 206.296.4137.

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Comments

2 Responses to “$50K 4Culture Grant Available For Artist For Regional Trail System”
  1. Karl says:

    They must be kidding! No money for police, lots for other junk.

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  2. Eric says:

    Karl, are you kidding? “With over 175 miles of trails for bicycling, hiking, walking, and horseback riding. T]he RTS extends from Bothell to Auburn and Seattle to the Cascades and provides opportunities for recreation, non-motorized mobility, and commuting throughout the County. Trails like the Burke-Gilman and Sammamish River are used by thousands daily for recreation and commuting to and from Seattle and suburban cities.” Yet there is just $50K to spend a year to review the trial and look for ways to apply public art to them. That is about $285 per mile. A little cost to add some joy to the lives of thousands daily.

    $50K is far less then the cost of one police officer (about 1/2 the cost) and likely less than the City of Burien spent to cut down the 96 30-year trees along Ambaum Blvd.

    If what you want is a police state without and art to feed the soul, you can leave me out. I think it is a shame we, as a society, do not spend more time looking for ways to add public beauty to our surroundings. Art feeds the soul and opens the mind. There is nothing more democratic than public art. You may not like it all, but is there for everyone, without the price of admission. Yes tax dollars pay for it, but is there anything really wrong with public money bringing public joy? I think not.

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