Examples of Public Art

This is a sample list of public art projects and initiatives administered by public art programs in other jurisdictions that align with the Watertown public art values.


Aligning Value: Bolster Creativity in Community Life

Providing Professional Development and Funding Support for Emerging Artists

Seattle, WA: The Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS)

Program Name: Public Art Bootcamp

This program is for emerging artists looking to become more engaged with public art, creating culturally relevant artworks which resonate with city populations. The city provides a "boot camp" that aims to help prepare artists who are interested in working in the public realm. The program also commissioned 14 temporary public arts projects for the summer of 2018.

Value of the Award: Attendees may attend the boot camp at no cost. Upon completion of the program, artists are provided with access to stipends to commission their own projects.

Selection Criteria: Not eligible if the artist has received any public arts award for more than $5K.

Aligning Value: Center Local Context and Identities in Engaging with Watertown’s Past, Present, and Future

Soliciting Calls for Art that Honor History and the Current Experience

City of Brookings, South Dakota

Project Name: Call for a 2D Work of Art for a City/County Building

The Bookings Public Art Commission, in partnership with the City of Brookings, SD, has released a Call for Art seeking an artist to design, fabricate and install 2D artwork in a public area of the shared use City/County building that honors the history, cultures, and current experience of Brookings County, SD residents.

Value of the Award: $10,000 commission.

Selection Criteria: The Call is open to all artists residing in South Dakota or in a neighboring state. One artist will be selected based on their past work which exhibits style and materials appropriate to the site, the artist’s biography, recommendations, and a strong letter of intent

Aligning Value: Foster Diversity and Interaction

Collaborating with Public Schools for Creative Youth Development

Denver, CO: Denver Public Art

Program Name: The Urban Arts Fund (UAF)

The Urban Arts Fund (UAF) is a graffiti prevention and youth development program that "provides access to positive, creative experiences for youth and transforms dilapidated areas into well-tended and active community gathering spaces." The program focuses on the prevention of unsanctioned graffiti through the creation of culturally relevant murals by local artists with local youth. Lead artists (adults) must include programming for youth development and engagement in their projects.

Value of the Award: Ranges from $2,000 to $8,000.

Selection Criteria: The program is open to all artists but gives preference to well-planned youth development and community engagement plans, first time applicants, as well as projects in neighborhoods with few or zero UAF murals.

Aligning Value: Make Connections to Nature and Sustainability

Celebrating an Underutilized Greenway with Performances and Public Art

Providence, RI

Project Name: Woonasquatucket River Greenway Arts

The City of Providence Department of Art, Culture + Tourism, along with cultural partners staged a series of public art projects and performances along the Greenway, highlighting the potential for a permanent linear art park connecting downtown to emergent arts institutions and diverse residential neighborhoods.

Value of the Award: The City has made (2) awards of $7,500 each for site-specific public art installations on the river.

Selection Criteria: RFQ process – https://artculturetourism.com/rfq-woonasquatucket-river-greenway/

Aligning Value: Solidify Commitments to the Public Arts through Stable Funding Investments, Policies, and Partnerships

Building Art into Public Infrastructure in Partnership with the Local Business Community

Mill Valley, CA: Arts Commission, which is staffed by the Recreation Department

Program Name: Art in Public Spaces

Art in Public Spaces is a program designed to incorporate functional and infrastructural art to public and natural spaces through the transformation of everyday objects. The project is divided into five main programs: the Sculpture Program, ArtBox, Art Benches, Little Libraries Project, and the Public Outdoor Ping Pong Table (POPP) with decorative murals.

Selection Criteria: Selection prioritizes beautiful organic design and benches made from environmentally sustainable materials.

Funding Source: The project started with an annual budget of $22,000 that has been allocated by the City. Organizers are also raising matching funds from a variety of sources.

Value of the Award: $500 for an ArtBox. Benches are purchased by donors after designs have been completed and approved the Arts Commission through and open call.