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Request for Qualifications: Tricentennial Artwork


Budget: $425,000
Activated: 07/30/2018
Deadline: 08/30/2018
Call Summary
Bexar County has engaged the San Antonio River Authority (SARA) to assist them in selecting an artist for a commission to install a permanent public artwork at the newly opened San Pedro Creek Culture Park in downtown San Antonio, TX. The Tricentennial Artwork will serve as a signature work of art for the Park and commemorate the Tricentennial of Bexar County and the City of San Antonio. The total budget available for this commission is $425,000.

The Tricentennial Artwork will engage the viewers in a thoughtful and celebratory way, and reflect the rich interweaving of cultures that define Bexar County and San Antonio. The site is near the location where the first Spanish Colonial Mission was founded, Mission San Antonio de Valero, which was later moved to the San Antonio River and became known as the Alamo. This artwork should emphasize the historic importance of San Pedro Creek and convey the story and culture of Bexar County and San Antonio. The site offers a unique opportunity to create a landmark for San Pedro Creek Culture Park, which has dramatically transformed the west side of downtown San Antonio.

More information about the San Pedro Creek Culture Park can be found at:
Budget Description
The budget for the Tricentennial Artwork is $425,000. The budget includes but is not limited to: all artist design and project management fees; travel; models and renderings of artwork; fabrication, transportation, and installation of artwork; and all required insurance and permits. Additionally, a stipend of $2,500 will be provided to finalists selected during the competitive selection process.
Project Description
The San Pedro Creek Culture Park, located on the western edge of downtown San Antonio, exemplifies beauty with purpose, as it serves as vital infrastructure for a growing downtown. Bexar County and SARA, in coordination with the City of San Antonio, have restored San Pedro Creek’s natural environment and created a world-class linear park – with a purpose that goes well beyond just being beautiful and enjoyable. It combines public art, architectural design and historic preservation with engineering, ecosystem restoration and native landscaping.

Phase 1.1 – stretching from the flood control tunnel inlet near Fox Tech High School to Houston Street – opened to the public on May 5, 2018. Phase 1.2 – from Houston Street to Nueva Street – is currently under construction. When the four phases are completed, the San Pedro creek Culture Park will span 2.2 miles through downtown, removing 30 acres from the 100 year flood plain and adding more than 11 acres of native landscaping.
Artwork Goals
The artwork commissioned for this site will be an iconic representation of San Antonio’s unity and diversity by honoring its past and embodying its future. The artwork should:

1. Be compelling and aesthetically excellent;
2. Commemorate the celebration of the 300th anniversary of Bexar County and San Antonio;
3. Celebrate San Pedro Creek’s culture and history by referring to its story with an authentic voice;
4. Bring to life imagery that speaks to diversity, inclusivity, tradition, and the future of our community;
5. Create excitement and interest from the community; and
6. Endure the climate of this area, the flooding nature of the creek and a variety of linear park public uses.
Artwork Location Description
Bexar County seeks a dynamic work of art for Plaza de Fundacion (Foundation Plaza), located between the flood control tunnel inlet and Santa Rosa Street in Phase 1.1. The plaza was the selected because it is located at what is considered to be the founding of San Antonio – both the first Mission, San Antonio de Valero, and the Presidio de Bejar were founded on San Pedro Creek. The exact location for the Tricentennial Artwork, an area within the plaza, is marked with a red star on the maps above. It is at the intersection of Santa Rosa Street and San Pedro Creek.

The selected artist, or artist team, will be expected to review concepts with Bexar County and SARA to ensure that the artwork is appropriate for the space, with a final acceptance subject to approval by Bexar County Commissioners Court, who will become the owner of the artwork.

The artwork location is currently being used for events and cultural programming (right). The Tricentennial Artwork should accommodate this activity in some way, either spatially or functionally, however the primary usage of this space will be for the Tricentennial Artwork.

Note: the stepped limestone terrace that surrounds the artwork location is adorned with poetry by local writer John Phillip Santos (below). For information about artwork in Phase 1.1 visit:
Site History
The legacy of San Pedro Creek is often overshadowed by the San Antonio River and its world renowned Paseo del Rio, but the creek played a primary and vital role in the history of Bexar County and San Antonio. As the community evolved cultures, languages, values, and religions were interwoven over hundreds of years, and are still evident today. San Pedro Creek touched lives in numerous ways. Revered as a life source (for drinking, abundant flora and fauna, and irrigation), the spring-fed creek provided direction for settlement. The creek eventually ceased to bring lives together and resulted in segregation, emerging as a dividing line between Anglo and Hispanic populations. Returning its healing spirit and embracing its ability to unite the community is part of the creek’s legacy. The San Pedro Creek Culture Park reflects on this rich history, reconstitutes life-giving qualities, and creates a sense of place.

Additional information on the history of the creek, a historical narrative and a mythic narrative are available online at: and
The project is open to all professional artists, age 18 and over, regardless of residence, race, color, religion, national origin, gender, military status, sexual orientation, marital status, or physical or mental disability. Artist teams are eligible to apply, including teams of artists from multiple disciplines. Teams must include at least one visual artist.
Application Requirements
Resume: 4 page(s) maximum
Work examples: 10
Letter of Interest: 500 word maximum
References: 3
Artists are allowed to apply in teams.
Artists applying as a team must split the allotted number of work examples between themselves.
Selection Information
Selection Process
SARA is administering the artist selection process for this commission, in partnership with Bexar County. The process will occur in two phases. During the first phase, artists are invited to submit qualifications through this Request for Qualifications. SARA will convene a selection panel made up of art and design professionals and Bexar County representatives to review and evaluate the applications received. The selection panel will then select up to three finalists.

During the second phase, the selected finalists will be asked to submit proposals for which they will each receive a $2,500 honorarium, plus travel expenses, upon delivery of the proposal. The honorarium includes all costs of preparing the proposal. Proposals must detail the finalist’s conceptual approach for artwork at the site and presentations must describe the concept, materials, size, weight, installation requirements, maintenance requirements, and budget. Finalists will be interviewed in person and one artist, or artist team, will be selected for the commission.

A recommendation for approval of the selected artist, or artist team, will be presented at the subsequent regular meeting of Bexar County Commissioners Court. Once approved, the artist will contract with SARA, the Project Manager of the San Pedro Creek Culture Park.
Selection Criteria
Artists should demonstrate the following:
1. Experience completing a public project in a prominent location, with a budget of this size (50%);
2. Sensitivity, creativity and engagement with diverse community (25%); and
3. Interest in the way that San Pedro Creek influenced the development and culture of San Antonio (25%).
1) July 30, 2018 Request for Qualifications issued
2) August 9, 2018 Artist Information Meeting and Site Visit
3) August 30, 2018 Request for Qualifications deadline
4) Week of September 17, 2018 Selection panel reviews applications and selects finalists
5) October 24, 2018 Proposals due from selected finalists
6) Week of October 29, 2018 Finalist interviews conducted, artist selected
7) November 2018 Bexar County Commissioners Court approval of selected artist
8) Winter 2019 Artwork installation complete
Additional Resources
Request for Qualifications (English) (PDF)
Request for Qualifications (Spanish) (PDF)
Contact Information
Joe Kibe
100 E. Guenther Street
San Antonio TX 78204 United States



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