City Of Bloomington Seeking Proposals For Public Art Installation At Trades District Garage

(BLOOMINGTON) – The City of Bloomington, through the Bloomington Arts Commission, seeks an artist or artist team to create a unique, durable, site-specific artwork at the Trades District Garage located near downtown Bloomington.  

Professional visual artists, designers, and architects, including artists new to the public art field, are invited to submit qualifications for consideration. 

The artwork selected for this site should engage with and amplify the spirit of innovation, technology, and entrepreneurship guiding the redevelopment of the Trades District, the City’s burgeoning economic and cultural hub. 

The artwork budget for this project is approximately $75,000, and the deadline to submit qualifications for consideration is July 8 at 5 p.m. 

Artists or artist teams responding to the Request for Qualifications (RFQ) will be required to include a one-page description outlining their conceptual and material approach to the project.  The artwork is being sought for installation in the garage’s interior stairwells. 

The RFQ does not require artists to submit actual design drawings. Artists have the option of partnering with one of several fabricators (listed at the RFQ page) to realize the final artwork, and may receive funding for up-front expenses.

A selection panel will review qualifications, including letter of interest, conceptual and material approach to the project, images of past work, and resume/vitae; and will choose up to three finalists to recommend for the commission. The finalists will each be asked to provide further detailed drawings, renderings, and or models of a proposed concept and will be compensated with an honorarium. 

The Trades District garage site is located just south of West Tenth Street between the Showers City Hall building and the B-Line Trail.  The Trades District Garage and the City’s new Fourth Street Garage will be the first two garages in Indiana designed and built to achieve Parksmart-certification, based on compliance with guidelines that reduce environmental impact, increase energy efficiency and performance, and manage parking spaces efficiently. The Trades District Parking Garage will add 350 spaces to the inventory of parking spaces downtown upon completion in late 2020 or early 2021.  

The garage will serve the 12-acre Trades District, the former site of Showers Brothers Furniture Company complex that has been re-envisioned as the city’s newest economic and cultural destination.  In addition to the business incubator and co-workspace known as The Mill, the site will soon see the transformation of the original Showers Kiln building into a home for established companies and flourishing startups to expand, along with restaurant space.  The City has made additional infrastructure improvements in the district in the form of new streets, walkways, and other environmentally friendly amenities.

Guidelines for submitting a proposal for consideration may be found at  Applications received after 5 p.m. on July 8 will not be considered.