Welcome to the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS) online application system.

Applications and support materials must be submitted through Submittable. Follow Submittable instructions to:

  • Register for a Submittable applicant account
  • Create your applicant profile
  • Submit applications

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call ARTS at 206.684.7171 or email arts.culture@seattle.gov. Staff is on-hand to assist applicants during business  hours, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. PT, Monday through Friday. 


About the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture

The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS) manages the city's public art program, cultural partnerships grant programs, ARTS at King Street Station, the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute, and The Creative Advantage initiative in the effort to foster a city driven by creativity that provides the opportunity for everyone to engage in diverse arts and cultural experiences. In alignment with the City's Race and Social Justice Initiative, we work to eliminate institutional racism in our programs, policies and practices.   

Introduction

The Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS) is offering a professional development and mentorship program for visual artists who are interested in the public art realm but have never done work in the field before. Artists will be selected through a competitive process to participate in a series of workshops, seminars, and mentorship meetings focused on the public art practice which will culminate in a commission for a temporary public artwork. 

ARTS is invested in training the next generation of public artists who can create culturally relevant artworks that resonate with the diverse population of the City of Seattle. Public Art Boot Camp provides training to artists who are ready to translate their exhibition experience to the public art realm. This is a competitive process so artists must apply to be considered. Up to 12 artists will be selected to participate. 

Public Art Boot Camp is open to artists currently living in Washington or Oregon state who have not received a temporary or permanent public art commission over $5,000 (a commission is defined as an artwork that is created by an artist at the request of an entity: public agency, private business, corporation, or individual; and that is/was displayed in a public location).

Scope of Work

Artists must attend eight (8) workshops, lectures, and seminars designed to take them step-by-step through the public art process from applying to public art calls to final artwork installation. Workshops will take place September 2020 through July 2021 in person at our offices at King Street Station in downtown Seattle or on location around the city via site visits. Due to the COVID-19 crisis, some or all seminars may be held virtually. In addition to the workshops, participants will have assignments and one-on-one mentorship meetings in-between the scheduled workshops. Workshops will be presented by a combination of public art administrators and public artists. 

Workshops and content provided will include:

  • Public art opportunities – temporary, permanent, portable works, and more
  • Work samples, images, letters of interest
  • Selection processes
  • “You’re Selected as a Finalist:  Now What?”
  • Working with architects, design professionals, city staff, and community members
  • Sample contracts proposals, budgets, materials, timelines
  • Design phase
  • Public presentations, reviews, approvals or rejections
  • Fabrication and installation


Opportunity

Public Art Boot Camp is a professional development and mentorship opportunity that will culminate in each artist creating a temporary artwork as part of one of the City’s temporary art programs, including Art Interruptions and Seattle Center Art Walk. 


Background

ARTS’ public art program has been activating the public realm for more than 40 years. During that time ARTS has been committed to providing high-quality professional development to the arts community. The 2020 Public Art Boot Camp has evolved to be a cohort model that will present material to participants over the course of a year and is the fifth year that ARTS is offering the Public Art Boot Camp. 


Eligibility

Public Art Boot Camp is open to artists currently living in Washington or Oregon state who have not received a temporary or permanent public art commission over $5,000 (a commission is defined as an artwork that is created by an artist at the request of an entity:  public agency, private business, corporation, or individual; and that is/was displayed in a public location). 

Applicants should have an interest in exploring the presentation of their work in public settings and an interest in community-building or enhancing the built environment. Applicants should also be committed to learning how to maintain artistic creativity and vision while attending to the demands of the public process. Priority will be given to emerging artists and artists from historically under-represented communities, including communities of color. Applicants are not eligible if they have already had a temporary or permanently sited public art commission for more than $5,000, as we are seeking artists new to the public art field.


Budget

Each selected artist will receive up to $8,600. The budget includes a $7,000 temporary art commission and a $200 stipend for each workshop attended up to $1,600. If the artist cannot complete the program or the temporary art commission the City reserves the right to award the temporary commission to an alternate artist.


Application Deadline

In response to the events happening in our community and around the country surrounding George Floyd’s death, the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture has decided to postpone the deadline for Public Art Boot Camp. We know that our community is responding to the legacy of racism and racialized violence that dates back 400 years and that continues to surface. In light of these events, we are rescheduling the application workshop to Saturday, June 20 and the application deadline to 11:59 p.m. (Pacific Daylight Time), Wednesday, July 8 to allow our community time for self-care, reflection, and action. Until then, please let us know if there’s anything we can do to support you and your work. 

Updated application deadline:  11:59 p.m. (Pacific Daylight Time), Wednesday, July 8, 2020. Please allow ample time to complete and submit your application; applications submitted after the 11:59 p.m. deadline will not be accepted.


Application Requirements

  • Written or Audio/Video Letter of Interest (not to exceed 300 words):  A letter of interest shares why you are interested in this opportunity and may explain why you are interested and/or ready to see what is involved in creating artwork for the public realm. 
  • Written or Audio/Video Biographical Statement (not to exceed 300 words):  The biographical statement replaces a request for a resume and is a space in which you are invited to share your life and creative experiences.
  • Written or Audio/Video Supplemental Question Responses:  More information about these supplemental questions is included below.
  • 4 - 8 Images of Past Work:  Some images may be details, but no compilations of multiple pictures in one image please.
  • Image Identification List (not to exceed 75 words per image):  Please explain each image clearly, including the title, year created, medium, and a brief description. If you completed a project as a team member, the image identification should indicate your role for each submitted image.

Supplemental Questions (please limit each response to 100 words maximum) 

  • What specifically interests you about the field of public art?
  • How do your background and/or life experiences inform your artwork? 
  • Is there anything specific you would like to highlight/emphasize for the selection panel to pay close attention to within your application? 
  • Of the training content that is outlined above as part of the description, what parts do you feel are key to your advancement into the public art realm? Is there any training/content that you feel is missing? 

Responses to the statement of interest, biographical statement, and supplemental questions may be submitted in written or audio/video format. If you choose to submit your responses in audio or video format, please create one audio or video file that includes your letter of interest, biographical statement, and supplemental question responses and upload this file to an online sharing platform (e.g., YouTube, Google Drive, Dropbox). The application form will include a space for you to enter the link to your file. Please follow this link to view helpful guidelines, resources, and tips for creating an audio or video response.


Selection Criteria

The Office of Arts & Culture is committed to reflecting the diversity and cultural richness of our city in the selection of artists and artworks. Artists will be selected on the basis of the following criteria: 

  • Strength and artistic vision of past artworks
  • Letter of Interest and answers to supplemental questions 
  • Biographical statement
  • Experience with previous art exhibitions or projects


Selection Process

Artists will be selected based on the strength of submitted work samples, statement of interest, and additional supplemental questions, and criteria listed above by a panel that consists of artists who have previously completed Public Art Boot Camp. Selected artists will be notified by July 31, 2020. The panelists will select up to 12 artists to participate in the Public Art Boot Camp that will culminate in the creation of a temporary public artwork. 


Notification of Results

Selected artists will be notified by email by July 31, 2020. The panelists will select up to 12 artists to participate in the Public Art Boot Camp. 


We're Here to Help

Talk with the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture Public Art Program Staff. Discuss questions and concerns. Get started NOW! It is fine to contact the project manager before you have the application written. The earlier you contact the project manager the better. Do not wait until the Deadline day!

Application questions should be directed to Rebecca Johnson at rebecca.johnson@seattle.gov or 206.684.0182.

  • Watch our best tips video here
  • Attend the Public Art Boot Camp Application Workshop (optional). We highly encourage you to attend the online workshop, especially if you are a first-time applicant. ARTS staff will share more information about Public Art Boot Camp plans and former participants will talk about their experiences. We will review steps of the Submittable application process. A recording of the webinar will be available on YouTube a few days after the session is held.

City of Seattle Public Art Boot Camp Application Workshop

NEW DATE:  Saturday, June 20, 2020 (1 - 3pm)

Please RSVP here

This is an online workshop and you will receive the link to the meeting after you RSVP. A recording of the webinar will be available on YouTube a few days after the session is held. 


Questions about this opportunity? Please contact project manager Rebecca Johnson at rebecca.johnson@seattle.gov or 206.684.0182.

Questions about using Submittable? Submittable maintains an FAQ and offers step-by-step guides on their help platform here. For further assistance with the Submittable online application, please contact Submittable tech support at support@submittable.com.