The Department of Art, Culture + Tourism (ACT) is commissioning a total of four temporary public art installations for PVDFest 2018. With this Request for Qualifications (RFQ), ACT, in partnership with the Art in City Life Commission and creative partner FirstWorks, is launching a jointly administered competitive call for art.  Selected artists will be provided a stipend to submit full proposals for their designs; no more than four artists will be selected to install work at PVDFest. Sites will be pre-selected by ACT, The Art in City Life Commission and FirstWorks.


This RFQ is open to individual artists, artist teams, and nonprofit organizations. Preference will be given to artists, practitioners, and scholars who live or have a business/studio address in Providence, RI.


Selected works will be installed prior to the start of PVDFest 2018 and remain installed for up to one week after the festival concludes.

RFQ Document Contents


  • Vision
  • Siting and Technical Considerations
  • Process and Timeline
  • Selection Panel
  • Eligibility
  • Expectations


The temporary public art at PVDFest 2018 should enhance pedestrian-level interactions between visitors at key sites on the PVDFest festival footprint. Installations must be located at preselected sites.  Projects should make the streetscape more vibrant, interactive, playful, surprising, or beautiful.

We envision the following types of projects, but hope you will exceed our expectations:

  • Parklet: an on-street parking space that is repurposed as public space
  • 2D such as mural, billboard, designed sign, mosaic fabrics, or glassworks
  • Luminary such as projection or reflection
  • 3D such as a stand-alone sculpture
  • Moving Image such as short film, video, or animation
  • Functional such as seating, landscaping, bicycle parking, or lighting
  • 3D Add-Ons such as a sculpture attached to a building or other structure

Siting and Technical Considerations


Past PVDFest installations have been sited at the following locations:

  • At the intersections of Westminster + Union / Westminster + Eddy / Westminster +  Dorrance (these combined intersections are considered as a site)
  • Clemence Alley
  • 203 Westminster Street (the former ProJo building)
  • At the intersections of Fulton + Eddy
  • Fulton Alley
  • City Hall
  • Biltmore Garage
  • Washington Street Garage

Installation and deinstallation schedules will be dependent upon design and site considerations.

Process and Timeline


  • December 18, 2017 – Deadline to submit qualifications
  • January 5, 2018 – Eight finalists are announced and invited to submit proposals
  • February 15, 2018 – Deadline to submit full proposals
  • March 1, 2018 – Announcement of four commissioned artists
  • April 15, 2018 – Deadline to submit final design concept, artist statement/bio, press information
  • May 15, 2018- Design and site- dependent installation + deinstallation schedules are confirmed
  • June 7-10, 2018 – Installation at PVDFest


The selection panel will review submitted qualifications and announce their list of eight finalists on January 5, 2018.  Finalists will be provided a stipend of $100 to develop full proposals, which will be due on February 15, 2018. Four artists will be commissioned to produce work for PVDFest. Those artists will be announced on March 1, 2018.


Applicants will retain copyright and receive credit for their work; the City of Providence and FirstWorks reserve the right to reproduce images of comissioned works for non-commercial purposes.


Selection Panel


The Department of Art Culture + Tourism will select three staff members to sit on the selection panel, along with three members of the Art in City Life Commission PVDFest subcommittee.


Art In City Life Commission is a public body established in 2016 by Mayor Elorza and staffed by the City’s Art, Culture + Tourism Department. It has collaborated with ACT staff and creative partner FirstWorks to develop the RFQ for Public Art.



Individual artists, artist teams, and arts organizations are eligible to apply. Lead applicants must be 18 years or older. Preference will be given to artists, practitioners, and scholars who live or have a business/studio address in Providence, RI.

To be considered, applicants must submit qualifications organized within the following documents no later than 5:00 pm on December 18, 2017.

  • Artist Statement
  • CV or Resume
  • 3-5 examples of previous work
  • Three professional references

Eight finalists will be invited to submit full design proposals and provided a $100 stipend for their time. For these proposals, the following materials must be submitted to Gina Rodriguez, Cultural Affairs Manager at no later than 5:00 pm on February 15, 2018.

  • Short summary of the work to be created responsive to the Vision Statement and site
  • Design concept drawing, a sketch, render or visual image that represents the idea of the project proposed. Please provide a JPG or PDF, hi-res color image.
  • Scale must be explicitly illustrated
  • A brief narrative on how you see the work being integrated into PVDFest (350 words max)
  • Any brief description of your anticipated technical needs
  • Projected draft budget

Selection criteria for full proposals:

  • Artistic or Scholarly Merit
  • Public Safety
  • Site Suitability
  • Durability
  • Demonstrated capacity/experience
  • Achievability




Four commissioned artists will be announced on March 1, 2018 and awarded $2500. If selected, artists will enter a contract with ACT and FirstWorks on behalf of PVDFest. General roles and responsibilities of the contractual parties will include:


Artist Responsibilities:


  • Submitting final design concepts no later than April 15, 2018
  • Designing, fabricating, and purchasing materials
  • Installing and removing the work upon completion of the display period in accordance with contract
  • Restoring the site to its original condition


PVDFest Responsibilities:

  • Working with artists to address city service requirements and technical assistance concerns related to installation and deinstallation
  • Execute an installation and DE installation schedule no later than May 15, 2018
  • Conduct juried process during PVDFest to select awarded artist for extended exhibition

All required RFQ Documents must be received no later than 5:00 pm on December 18, 2017.

Submit to RFQ for PublicArt@PVDFest 2018

  • Accepted file types: doc, docs, pdf.
  • Drop files here or