Request for Proposal (RFP) for temporary public art installation
Calgary Municipal Land Corporation (CMLC) invites local area artists to submit proposals to create site specific art installations for specific locations along the Jack and Jean Leslie RiverWalk pathway in East Village. Now more than ten years since its inception, the goal of this program is to provide ongoing opportunity for local artists, collectives or not-for-profit arts organizations to participate in contributing to the character and identity of the area by creating temporary public art installations. This project is being implemented by CMLC with the assistance of a volunteer selection committee.
Overview: East Village
East Village sits on the eastern edge of downtown Calgary, 49-acres of prime real estate bordered by two rivers, four thriving neighbourhoods, a historic park, direct access to public transit and armed with a visionary master plan.
In 2009, CMLC in conjunction with distinguished British firm, Broadway Malyan, announced the master plan for East Village, an urban village inspired by some of the most livable neighbourhoods in the world. The master plan envisions an area that is vibrant and mixed-use, with residential and retail rubbing shoulders, an eclectic mix of architecture ranging from century old buildings to the state-of-the-art Central Library and Studio Bell – home of the National Music Centre, as well as public spaces that celebrate nature, offer connection, recreation and rejuvenation. East Village is blossoming into one of Calgary’s most walkable, bikeable, strollable, durable and in short, liveable communities.
Both the Area Redevelopment Plan (ARP) and the East Village Master Plan envision arts and culture as the heart of East Village. Considered the ‘software’ that gives a neighbourhood its true soul and character, public art and a vibrant cultural scene are critical to the area’s success. To that end, CMLC is committed to continuing a vibrant arts presence in East Village through the installation of both permanent and temporary public art installations of local, national and international significance.
Since 2009, CMLC has seen steady progress, turning the East Village master plan into a reality. With nearly $400 million in infrastructure projects invested in the community, East Village is transforming into a true urban village. New streetscapes are in place providing convenient pedestrian linkages, the 4th Street Underpass connects East Village to Stampede Park and Calgary’s emerging Culture + Entertainment District and the southern Beltline communities, the historic Simmons building is a vibrant culinary destination, two kilometres of RiverWalk connect East Village to downtown and beyond and St. Patrick’s Island is an island destination in the heart of downtown.
Since 2015, over 1500 new residential homes have been built and welcomed new residents into East Village along with a selection of village and urban format retailers who bring to life the dynamic community.
In 2010, CMLC unveiled the first temporary art installation as part of a curated temporary program along RiverWalk, I am the River by Derek Besant. Fast forward to 2013 and the second installation, The Field Manual: A compendium of local influence was created and installed by local artist collective Light & Soul, Window to the Wild by Curtis Van Charles Sorenson was the fourth in the series and finally the current iteration by Katie Green, Bridge.
A new temporary installation was added to the neighbourhood in 2018 with Michelle Hoogveld’s work Corridor of Connection at the 4th Street Underpass. CMLC has also brought four permanent installations to East Village by renowned international artist Julian Opie, local Calgary artist Ron Moppett and Canadian artist Michel de Broin, who designed Bloom which graces the newly restored St. Patrick’s Island and Christian Moeller’s TRIO, at the Central Library.
Objectives of Public Art Program
The East Village Art in the Public Realm program supports the vision of the neighbourhood’s master plan and place branding objectives and has been designed to realize the following objectives:
Project & Site Description
This document outlines the RFP criteria for the selection of temporary 24 to 36-month public art project(s) for the defined section/sites along the RiverWalk pathway. The site is comprised of two public washroom buildings, one maintenance building and three bridge/flyover abutments, totaling six sites or 15 surfaces that are available for temporary art installations (see map and images attached in Appendix A).
a) For purposes of this RFP, artists may submit proposals that utilize either all of the abutments, all of the building surfaces or combined site surfaces of both. Proposals could also consider the areas between and around the six sites, provided they do not interfere with pedestrian traffic or safety along RiverWalk.
b) Site surfaces may change depending on the advancement and modifications on neighbouring projects.
The site area has three large concrete abutments (LRT, 4th & 5th Ave Flyovers) facing the RiverWalk pathway to the north and Riverfront Avenue to the south. Proposals may suggest concepts for either both or single sides of the abutments. Proposals must consider that artwork(s) must be temporary in nature and not cause permanent damage to the structures. Artwork(s) cannot interfere with pedestrian movement along the pathway or sidewalk.
Maintenance Shed/Public Washrooms:
The site area includes three buildings adjacent to the RiverWalk public plaza. The maintenance shed and two public washrooms support the application of graphics and can be utilized as per the artist(s) concept, provided that artwork(s) do not permanently impact the structures and can be removed at the end of the installation term without harm or damage. Artwork(s) can be installed on three of four sides of the public washrooms.
Artists responding to this RFP must provide the following information:
Proposals may be submitted by individual artists, a collective group or a not-for-profit arts organization, provided the project can be completed within the budget.
Artists may submit more than one concept along with a statement for each.
Please do not send materials not specifically requested (ie: videos, DVDs, articles etc). Submissions will not be returned. CMLC will not accept faxed or emailed submissions. Submissions must be in English.
Selected artists will be required to sign a Service Contract/Memorandum of Understanding with CMLC.
The Budget & Term
The total allocated budget for this project (all six sites) is $100,000 CDN. The budget is inclusive of artist fees and materials required for the creation and installation. Art installations are considered temporary in nature and will remain in place for a period of 24-36 months, following the completed installation.
Application and Design Criteria
Applicants will be evaluated on quality of past work, artistic merit of proposed concept, qualifications, and ability to execute the project. References will also be checked. Proposals will be reviewed by a volunteer selection committee comprised of CMLC and community representatives.
Acceptance of Submissions:
Electronic submissions must be submitted by December 23, 2021 at noon (MST). Applications will be reviewed by the selection committee and shortlisted proponents will advance to an interview process with members of the selection committee. A final selection will be made in February 2022.
CMLC may in its sole discretion disqualify any or all proposals that:
CMLC reserves the right to withdraw the RFP, initiate a different selection process, or re-issue the RFP at any time.
Submissions should be delivered via email to CMLC:
Anna Lake: firstname.lastname@example.org
Attention: Public Art Committee
CMLC assumes no responsibility for lost or damaged submissions and application contents will not be returned.
All documents submitted to CMLC are subject to the protection and disclosure provisions of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIP). This prohibits CMLC from disclosing personal or business information where disclosure would be harmful to business interests or would be an unreasonable invasion of personal privacy.
Due to the nature of this project and the possibility that the artwork may be vandalized, artists applying for this project must accept the risk that their artwork may be damaged, altered or removed. The artist further grants CMLC the following permissions:
For more information, direct inquiries to:
Senior Manager, Marketing, CMLC
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