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Wheaton Mural

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Budget: $32,000
Activated: 01/03/2022
Deadline: 01/31/2022
 
Call Summary
Artists who are residents of Maryland are invited to submit qualifications to paint an outdoor mural celebrating Downtown Wheaton and its variety of cultures The purpose of this project is to help make Wheaton a truly enjoyable place to walk where people can experience art daily. It is intended to enhance our sense of community as well as attract visitors to strengthen our local economy. The location is 11301 Georgia Avenue. The deadline to submit qualifications is January 31, 2022 at 5:00 PM. Three semi-finalists will be paid $1000 each to prepare design concepts. One finalist will be selected with the property owner to complete their design and install the mural. The property owner has final approval of the design. The projected budget is $32000. The completion date for the mural is September 9, 2022. This project is conceived and run by The Art and Walkability Project in partnership with One Montgomery Green. It is funded in part by the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC). MSAC’s Public Art Across Maryland (PAAM) program is supporting this planning process. The project is also supported in part by the Montgomery County Government and the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County.
 
Budget Description
The artist’s commission is for delivery of the mural with community engagement. The projected budget for that work is $32000. The artist will be responsible for materials, rental of equipment, and insurance. The artist will coordinate with the property owner on the wall preparation.
If we find we must work with a smaller budget, we will discuss this with the artist. This will occur after we receive all notifications concerning our grant applications and complete our fundraising in August 2022. If the budget is smaller than projected the artist may revise the size and complexity of the design accordingly. Therefore, one of the selection criteria for the final design is mural size flexibility. We want a design that the artist is comfortable modifying to fit a final budget. This is important to us to state here because we are committed to honesty, transparency and paying the artist fully, fairly and on time. We will share our fundraising strategy and progress freely.
 
Project Description
This is a commission for a new outdoor mural of approximately 2000 square feet on the side of an existing building. The building is two stories and faced primarily with glazed brick. The selected artist will finalize their design and provide up to two iterations to respond to comments. The artist will be responsible for materials, insurance and rental of equipment such as a lift. The artist will coordinate with the property owner who will prepare the wall. The commission includes community engagement which consists of the artist providing a teaching session on-site for several local art students, a presentation for the public and a brief online voice recording about the mural.

The Art and Walkability Project is partnering with One Montgomery Green to commission the mural. The Art and Walkability Project is a local group of residents and business owners promoting walkability using a strategy of incorporating art on surfaces and structures in the public realm. One Montgomery Green (OMG) is a Montgomery County non-profit operating as a 501c3 organization. OMG's focus is sustainability which includes promoting walkability and reducing dependence on cars.

This project is suited to either an individual artist or a team of artists.
 
Artwork Goals
The goal of this project is to celebrate Downtown Wheaton and its variety of cultures. It is also to help make Wheaton a truly enjoyable place to walk where people can experience art daily. It is intended to enhance our sense of community as well as attract visitors to strengthen our local economy.
 
Artwork Location Description
The mural will be outdoors at 11301 Georgia Avenue which is a highly visible location on a main boulevard running through the center of the Wheaton Arts and Entertainment District. It is one block from the Wheaton Metro Station and two blocks from the new Marian Fryer Town Plaza.

The mural will be painted on the side of a corner building marking the entrance to Price Avenue and its variety of local restaurants. The mural will be approximately 2000 square feet in size. The wall is faced with glazed brick and includes a door to businesses on the second floor which has a row of punched windows. The first floor includes a 3-section plate glass window for bakery customers seated inside looking out. Site images can be found under the Additional Resources section of this page.

The wall will be viewed at night in artificial light coming from several sources. Nighttime is the most important time for people to view the mural. It is when the local arts and entertainment economy must thrive to be successful.

The wall has a southern exposure and receives direct sunlight. This necessitates the use of paints and a protective coating that will ensure the integrity of the mural’s colors over the years.

In order to access the wall and paint the mural, the artist will need to continuously use the adjacent sidewalk which is approximately 10 feet wide and in the public right of way. The artist may also need to use the adjacent on-street parking spaces. Use of the right of way involves coordination with the County.

There are several locations from which views of the mural are most important in order to achieve the goals of this project. They are described in the Additional Resources section of this page.
 
Site History
The history of the building dates to the 1950’s when it was constructed by the family that owns it today. The key tenant, Caramelo Bakery has been there over 15 years. It is popular with the local Latin American community. The bakery offers a variety of items from throughout Central and South America. The language of business is exclusively Spanish.

The block where the building is located has several properties, which have different owners. The owners are primarily local families of European ancestry. The block has several other modest buildings from the mid-century. The tenants are primarily small businesses with owners from a wide range of geographies and cultures, speaking a variety of languages. Their countries of origin include El Salvador, Uganda, Haiti, Jamaica and Ethiopia.

The neighborhood has been changing over the past twenty years to include four new multi-family buildings and many new residents. Residents come from many cultures and often speak languages other than English at home. A significant number of people identify as Hispanic while many do not. More Information on this census tract is included in the Additional Resources section of this page.
 
Eligibility
MARYLAND RESIDENTS ONLY are eligible. This eligibility requirement is from the Maryland State Arts Council which is generously providing part of the funding for this project through its Public Art Across Maryland (PAAM) program. Artists must be at least 18 years old. Teams may apply. Artists living in Montgomery County are encouraged to apply.
 
Application Requirements
Biography
Resume: 2 page(s) maximum
Work examples: 3 - 5
Artist Statement: 300 word maximum
Letter of Interest: 300 word maximum
Artists should follow the recommendations that are provided by PublicArtist.org on their website for composing a Letter of Interest.
References: 1
 
Artists are allowed to apply in teams.
Each artist is to submit the full allotment of work examples.
 
Selection Information
Selection Process
The Selection Process has two-steps. It includes a selection committee which receives community input. The first step is submittal of qualifications beginning January 3, 2022 with a deadline of January 31, 2022. Three semi-finalists will be chosen with the approval of the property owner. Each semi-finalist will receive $1000 to create a detailed design concept for the mural.

The second step is the submittal of a detailed design concept by each semi-finalist. These will be reviewed by the selection committee which receives community input. One finalist will then be selected to receive the commission with the approval of the property owner.

The selection committee will have up to nine members. It will include representatives from the community, local businesses, the urban district, the county arts organization and the property owner. It will also include an urban designer from the Montgomery County Planning Department which is located in Wheaton, and a professional mural artist. The artist will receive $250 consistent with the Maryland State Arts Council’s (MSAC) practice of compensating artists for their professional contributions. This project is funded in part by the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) through their Public Art Across Maryland (PAAM) program which is supporting this planning and selection process.

There are no separate funds to cover travel arrangements or lodging for artists during either the selection process or for the installation of the mural.
 
Selection Criteria
The Step 1 Selection Criteria for Semi-Finalists are:
1) Creativity and innovation
2) Mural experience
3) Community engagement experience
4) Skill and craftsmanship and the positive emotional impact of work
5) Community response.

To proceed to the semi-final stage and receive the $1000 to prepare detailed design concepts, the selected artists will each be asked to confirm the following:
• Their availability and commitment to complete the mural on the schedule provided, by September 9, 2022 .
• Their availability to attend the celebration and dedication, September 18, 2022.
• Their availability May 4th through 6th in 2022 to participate in finalizing a key grant application. That grant application requires information from the selected artist.
• Their acknowledgment that their designs and written statements will be public and shared with the community to gather community input.

The Step 2 Selection Criteria for the Design are:
1) Creativity and Innovation
2) Positive emotional impact
3) Content/communication of a multi-culturalism message
4) The experience from key viewing locations as shown in the Additional Resources section of this page.
5) Mural size flexibility as discussed below.
6) Community response

Mural size flexibility: If we find we must work with a smaller budget than the projected amount of $32000, we will discuss this with the artist. This will occur after we receive all notifications concerning our grant applications and complete our fundraising in August 2022. If the budget is smaller than projected, the artist may revise the size and complexity of the design as appropriate. Therefore, one of the selection criteria for the final design is mural size flexibility. We want a design that the artist is comfortable modifying to fit a final budget. This is important to us to state because we are committed to honesty, transparency and paying the artist fully, fairly and on time. We will share our fundraising strategy and progress freely.

NOTE: This project is receiving funding for 2022 from the Wheaton Cultural Programs Grant, therefore we will coordinate with the grantor, the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, to establish the criteria for reserving a semi-finalist spot for a Wheaton/local artist.
 
Timeline
All Dates are in 2022.
January 3, Monday at 9:00 AM: Request for Qualifications (RFQ) Submittal Portal Opens. Begin Submissions
January 9, Sunday, at 2:00 PM: Optional Site Visit and Question and Answer Session*
January 31, Monday, at 5:00 PM: Deadline for Submissions
February 1, Tuesday to February 18, Friday: The Selection Committee and Community Review Submissions
February 22, Tuesday: Selection Committee Meets
February 23, Wednesday: Semi-Finalists Announced
February 23, Wednesday to April 8, Friday: Semi-Finalists Prepare Detailed Design Concepts
April 8, Friday at 5:00 PM: Semi-Finalists Detailed Design Concepts Due
April 11, Monday to May 1, Sunday: Selection Committee and Community Review Detailed Design Concepts
May 3, Tuesday at 9:00 A.M.: Selection Committee Meets to Select Finalist
May 4, Wednesday: Announcement of the Selected Artist and Detailed Design Concept
May 4, Wednesday to May 6, Friday: MSAC Grant Application Finalized with the Selected Artist
May 4, Wednesday to June 3, Friday: Preparation and Signing of the Contract
June 3, Friday to August 1, Monday: Development of the Final Design by the Selected Artist
August 1, Monday: Wall Preparation
August 1, Monday: Final Design Approved for Installation
August 1, Monday to September 9, Friday: Installation Period which allows for delays such as for weather or air quality.
September 9, Friday: Mural Complete
September 18, Sunday: Public Celebration and Dedication at Arts Festival

*Question and Answer Session and Optional Site Visit on January 9, Sunday at 2:00 PM will be on-site at 11301 Georgia Avenue. Artists may also submit questions by email to MargaretKRifkin@TheArtandWalkabilityProject.com. Answers will be provided to everyone on our website: TheArtandWalkabilityProject.com.




 
Additional Resources
www.TheArtandWalkabilityProject.com
Important Wheaton Mural Views for Call to Artists (PDF)
Census Tract Data for Wheaton Mural Location (PDF)
Wheaton Mural Wall Details (PDF)
 
Contact Information
Margaret K Rifkin
1930 Flowering Tree Terrace
Silver Spring Maryland 20902 USA
(240) 570-7150
MargaretKRifkin@TheArtandWalkabilityProject.com
 

 

 

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