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Public and Cultural Arts Office


Artists' Opportunities

The Public and Cultural Arts Office announces various opportunities for artists throughout the year, including calls to artists, requests for qualifications and requests for proposals, as well as for those offered by other arts organizations.  Open and upcoming calls to artists sponsored by the Public and Cultural Arts Office are posted on this page.  You may also wish to join our email list and follow us on Facebook to learn of future calls to artists from this office and from other organizations based on your preferences and location.

Current and Upcoming Opportunities for Artists (1):

Request For Proposals:
Into The Streets:  Community Art Project, Chapel Hill, NC
(PDF version)

Project Summary 

DESCRIPTION:  In the spirit of encouraging artists to move out of the studio and “into the streets,” the Town of Chapel Hill’s Public and Cultural Arts Office and Public Arts Commission seek artists or teams to create temporary or more permanent artwork that directly engages and benefits the communities in Chapel Hill and Carrboro, North Carolina.  The project(s) must take place in Chapel Hill or Carrboro.  All media and forms will be considered, including but not limited to the following: spoken word performances, musical performances, dance, video or electronic media, 2-D and 3-D visual installation, etc.  Emerging and established artists are encouraged to apply.   Artists are encouraged to call the contact below with questions and to discuss their proposal ideas with this individual before submitting their proposal.

ELIGIBILITY:  Open to all artists and teams 18 years or older residing in Orange, Durham, Chatham, Alamance or Wake Counties with ties to Chapel Hill or Carrboro, North Carolina.  Organizations and agencies are not eligible to apply, but can be named as a partner in an artist’s or team’s proposal.  Selected artists or teams must have general liability insurance (please call the Public and Cultural Arts Office for information regarding insurance requirements).

PROJECT BUDGET:  The total budget for this project is $8,500.  The commission funds must cover all expenses related to the concept, design and implementation of the project.  Capital items that would live beyond the life of the project are eligible expenses, but the item(s) will revert to the ownership of the Town.

DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS:  Friday, December 12, 2014

Project Specifics

The purpose of the project is to encourage artists in all media to collaborate with a community or communities to develop socially engaging art experiences in a community setting.  “Community” is loosely defined as any group of people or population in a geographical location such as a neighborhood or street, or any group with a common interest or experience, e.g. at-risk youth, cancer patients, domestic violence survivors, grief, mental illness, seniors, etc. The selected artist or team will collaborate with his or her chosen community to express its voice(s) through the artist/team’s direction and selected media.  Projects should demonstrate a direct benefit for the community, whether tangible (i.e., beautification) or intangible (i.e., awareness).  The artwork created during the course of this collaboration will be publicly displayed or performed to demonstrate the significance of that community.  Projects with k-12 schools are not eligible as such projects are implemented through the Public and Cultural Arts Office’s Artist-in-Residence Program.  Projects with university students will only be eligible if the project takes place off-campus and in a community not associated with a university.  To help artists think about their proposed project see the Community Art Project webpages for descriptions of previously commissioned projects. 

The selected artist or team will be required to identify the project community, make the necessary connections to ensure community participation, and devise a plan for engaging community members in the creation of themes, content, and/or the artwork itself.  The proposal should identify the community benefit and include a measurement or evaluation tool.  Projects that address an underserved or under-recognized community or population are encouraged.  Work within the community will begin February 2015.   The final product must be completed, exhibited, or performed no later than June 15, 2015.  Proposals reflecting broad and diverse community dialog, participation and support will receive priority.  Proposals without a confirmed community partner will not be considered.

How to Apply

Artists and teams should send the following digital application materials on a CD (compact disc) or DVD (digital video disc) through the post to Jeffrey York, Public and Cultural Arts Administrator (address provided below) or in an emailed file sent to  No printed application materials will be reviewed. 

A complete application should include a (1) Proposal, (2) Documentation of Previous Work, (3) Image List, (4) Resume, and (5) Letter of Support, each described below: 

1. Proposal
A Word file (.doc or .docx) not to exceed three pages.  The proposal must address the following six topics in order:

Brief Description of the Proposed Project in 200 words or less

Purpose of the Project
- What are the project goals and success factors for the project?
- Objectives?
- Evaluation tools- Describe the community(s) with which the artist or team will work.  What is the relevance and benefit to the community(s) in/for which the project will take place?

How is the community involved in the implementation and success of the work?

Describe any previous experience in working with communities/community groups and the nature of those projects. 

Collaborator Information
- List all collaborators as part of this application and provide a 1-2 sentence description of the role each collaborator will play in the project, and each collaborator’s level of commitment to the project 

Project Documentation
- Identify how the project will be documented and shared publicly 

Budget and Logistics (1 separate page may be used)
- Provide a realistic budget that indicates expenditures in the following categories (if applicable):  Artist Fees, Contracted Labor/Service Costs, Materials/Supplies, Space Rentals, Travel, Marketing, Overhead, Insurance, and other costs.
- How will liability insurance, location rights and/or permits (if necessary) be secured for the project?

The proposal may also contain up to four images representing the project concept in the JPEG format described below. 

2. Documentation of Previous Work
Up to six images and/or a video of previous projects or work may be submitted.  Each image must be a PC-compatible JPEG file at 72 pixels per inch, as close to but no larger than the following dimensions:  900 pixels wide by 650 pixels tall.  Please do not present images as a montage (ie., in a PowerPoint file); each image must be a separate JPEG.  Each JPEG file must be named in the following format – “lastname_title_view#.jpg” – where the artist’s last name is followed by underscore, title of artwork, underscore, view number (1, 2 or 3), file extension. Video submissions must be compatible with Quicktime 7 or above and run no longer than four minutes.  3. Image List

Images and video must be accompanied by a Word file (.doc or .docx) listing the title of each project or work depicted, year completed, media, location, dimensions, and budget. 

4. Letter of Support
A letter from a community group or leader expressing a commitment to working with the artist on the project would be considered a plus in the selection process. 

5. Resume
A word file (.doc or .docx) resume, no longer than 2 pages.  Teams may submit a separate resume for each member.

Selection Criteria 

Each proposal will be evaluated based on the following criteria.   Each will be equally weighted: 

Artistic Merit
- Quality of the proposed project and qualifications of artist/teams 

Project Impact
- Benefit and relevance to the community(s)
- Extent of diverse community participation  

Potential for Success
- Understanding of the project goals
- Evidence of community involvement/commitment (most important)
- Experience in working collaboratively
- Realistic budget and plan for executing project as proposed 

Selection Process

A Selection Committee comprising local arts professionals, educators, social service professionals, and Public Arts Commissioners will review all complete submissions and select finalists.  Each finalist (single artist or team finalist) may be invited to interview and present a more detailed proposal.  Finalists will be compensated $100 for their proposal presentation.  After proposal presentations the Committee will select the artist(s) / team(s) to be sponsored for projects.

Schedule (subject to change)

December  12, 2014

deadline for submissions

by December 23, 2014
review and selection of finalists, notification sent

by January 16, 2015
finalists’ interviews and proposal presentations to Selection Committee

by January 17, 2015
project artist(s) / team(s) selected, notification sent

February 2015 – June 30, 2015
project implementation(s) 

About the Public and Cultural Arts Office and the Public Arts Commission

The Town of Chapel Hill’s Public and Cultural Arts Office develops and implements art programs to increase public awareness and access to the arts, and provides opportunities for local artists to display their work. The Office is advised by the Chapel Hill Public Arts Commission, an 11-member volunteer board established in 1992 and appointed by the Town Council.  The Office’s Percent for Art Program, established by a 2002 Ordinance, allocates one percent of selected capital projects for the creation and maintenance of works of public art.  Funding for the Percent for Art projects comes from each project’s construction budget.


For questions for additional information please contact:

Jeffrey J. York,
Public and Cultural Arts Administrator
200 Plant Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
T:  (919) 968-2750


The Chapel Hill Public and Cultural Arts Office reserves the right to refuse any or all submissions, to refuse any finalist, to waive informalities in proposals or procedures, or to withhold the award of a commission should it be determined that submissions are not adequate, or for any other reason prior to a written contractual arrangement being reached.


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