FIGMENT DC 2014 Call for Entry

By Editorial Team on July 16, 2014

Deadline: Fri, 01 July 2022

Artist project at the 2012 Figment DC festival at Yards Park. Photo Courtesy Figment DC.


Deadline for submission is August 2, 2014.


FIGMENT offers free, inclusive and participatory art to entire communities, removing the barriers of museum and gallery walls and entrance fees and blurring the lines between those who create and those who enjoy art. FIGMENT is a space for every type of artist, building a creative community, and fostering participatory and public art and creative culture.

This is not a competition. FIGMENT believes there will be room to accommodate virtually everyone’s project as long as it meets the basic FIGMENT criteria for interactivity and safety. Each entry will be reviewed on its own merits and FIGMENT will try to get approval decisions out as quickly as possible after submission so that you’ll have plenty of time to get your project done.

FIGMENT DC will showcase a diverse range of interactive and collaborative works. They invite proposals for interactive art of all mediums from local and regional artists. From installation, to performance art, to dance and video, to anything else. If you have an art car, bring it. They might not be able to get you on grass, but you will have a parking spot right up close.

FIGMENT’S 11 Principles
FIGMENT practices 11 Principles, and encourages you to become familiar with them, too. From the principles of Participation and Inclusion to Civic Responsibility and Gratitude, we all work together to create the world we call FIGMENT.

Submit a Project Today
Please review the Artists FAQ, and help make FIGMENT awesome. To begin the process, create an account on the FIGMENT Artist Submission Portal. This is your account to keep, so please make a note of your username and password. Once you’ve created an account, and can log in, it is recommended that you change your password to something you’ll remember.

If you submitted a project to FIGMENT in 2013 and would like to submit the same project in 2014, please email FIGMENT at

Keep in mind the following notes:

  • You can SAVE your project as often as you’d like and come back to make changes to it. You will receive an email from FIGMENT Project when you start work on your project. Keep in mind that once you SUBMIT your project, you will no longer have access to the details of your work. However, we encourage you to SAVE repeatedly until you are completely satisfied with your work. You will not be able to SUBMIT until you have completed all required data sections. If you think you’re ready to submit and the system won’t let you, it means that you’ve missed a spot somewhere.
  • Once you submit, you will receive another email from FIGMENT Project that will say “This email confirms that you have successfully submitted a new project in the FIGMENT Artist Portal called ProjectName for FIGMENT DC 2014. Please note that this email does NOT mean that your project has been accepted for FIGMENT DC 2014, only that you’ve successfully submitted it for further review. A curator will contact you in the next few days with further information and instructions.”
  • Please note that if you click on one of the tabs at the top of the portal, it will NOT save your work.  Only clicking “Next” or “Save” will save your work.
  • If you’re coming back into the portal to rework your originally saved project, click on the button that says, “Click to Submit a Project” and it’ll bring you to where you can edit your saved submission.

Details of the Submission Form – Please Read Carefully

Here’s what you’ll find on the submission form:

  • Please answer each question with an asterisk, especially those that request a “Yes or No”, as you work through the submission form. You won’t be able to submit your project until each required question is answered.
  • Accept the Waiver – Accept Policies. When you click on these buttons, the waiver and policy will pop up and you’ll have the option to accept or cancel.
  • Primary and Secondary Contact Info – This information is private, and is only available to FIGMENT staff.
  • Publicly Visible Info. This information about your Project will appear on the FIGMENT DC website, but not until we approve your project and get all text ready for publication. Please note there is no intention to post your personal email addresses. However, if you provide a website to either your organization or your project, it will be linked to on FIGMENT’s page of Projects and Artists.
  • Project Image. This should be an HTML file. (The application form does not say this yet, but they’re working to get this fixed.)
  • Description about your Project. The more details you can provide, the better. Please note that there are questions that discuss fire, compressed gas, water, etc. Fire and gas projects or anything with hazardous materials, at this time, are not permitted at FIGMENT DC. They can talk with you about specific permit requirements on the chance that they make an exception.
  • Scheduling. You’ll need to check the box about submitting to perform on a stage whether you are or not. Also, as you look at “Your Project’s Time Commitment to FIGMENT,” please note that FIGMENT DC 2014 hours will be from 11am-5pm on both Saturday and Sunday.
  • Infrastructure Requirements. For instance, do you need power? If so, do you have your own generator? FIGMENT will need a lot of detail about your infrastructure equipment, so please be prepared to provide that. ***If you will have a shade structure, you must provide information about the make and model, and be prepared to show fire proof certificates for each structure. Basic 10’x10′ pop-ups do not require fire retardant certificates, but they need to know that you’re bringing them ahead of time; the permitting process is really complicated in DC. (Please note that there is a not currently a question that specifically requests info about your shade structure. Please help FIGMENT with this and fill it in with your infrastructure requirement info.)
  • Set-up and Break-down Plan. Our team will be happy to work with you to solidify your plan if you require more than an hour or two for set-up. Otherwise, we plan that set-up will happen on Saturday morning, before FIGMENT begins at 11am, and strike will happen Sunday evening, after FIGMENT ends at 5pm. Please be specific with your clean-up plan, as well. FIGMENT is not responsible for any of the trash your project may create, so be prepared to carry out all that you carry in.
  • Personal Artist Background, Donations, and Financial Commitment. Please share info about your art, and any additional materials you can donate to the event or other FIGMENT artists.

Please be sure to submit a project through the above application process if your project involves any of the following:

  • Staking (for shade structures or putting anything into the ground)
  • Shade structures
  • Electricity
  • Water
  • Hanging items from trees (not allowed) or attaching items to park infrastructure (also not allowed)
  • Lengthy set-up time (more than 30 minutes)
  • Special transport requirements for set-up or take-down

Due to the large number of projects submitted, we cannot guarantee that we will have the ability to incorporate last minute infrastructure requirements such as permits, generators, and proper placement.

FIGMENT strongly recommends participation on the day-of FIGMENT through games, activities, costumes, etc. Please remember that FIGMENT is a Leave No Trace event. We expect that all artists will be solely responsible for cleaning up after themselves and their projects. Additionally, all artists are asked to check-in upon arrival to sign a waiver and be shown your placement.

Please read through the Proposal Criteria below for more information. If you’ve submitted your project, you should be hearing from the FIGMENT team shortly. As soon as they have accepted your project, they will hook you up with their Curatorial Team, who will serve as a guiding light and trouble-shooter in the time leading up to and throughout FIGMENT Weekend.

Proposal Criteria

Your FIGMENT DC project can be submitted by an individual or collective of individuals. Projects will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • Creativity. Your project, whether it’s an installation or a performance, should be visually stunning and wildly innovative. Your proposal should state a clear concept, theme or central idea.
  • Interactivity. Your project MUST provide for ongoing interactivity and participation from visitors to FIGMENT DC. This could be as simple as a way visitors can move, influence, or play with your art, or simply involving the audience in your performance. It could also involve transforming, adding to, or fundamentally altering the art project over the course of the day, or having the audience actually influence the course, content, and outcome of your performance or project. In the questionnaire, please be sure to fully explain how your project will be participatory and engage visitors at FIGMENT.
  • Structural Integrity. If you are bringing an installation to FIGMENT, keep in mind that this is not a traditional art event. When you design a piece for FIGMENT DC, imagine that unless otherwise specified, it may be climbed on by 15 people at a time, kicked, walked on, etc – for hours at a windy waterfront park. If it rains, there is limited shelter, water will gather in low-lying areas and grass will turn muddy. Keeping that in mind, build for the apocalypse and consider a modular design for ease of transport and installation and de-installation. Although we do not anticipate acts of intentional vandalism, anything that moves, is shiny or removable will likely be played with and pulled on in ways you did not imagine.
  • Context and Impact. When thinking about your submission, especially when you are bringing a performance to the park, think about how your project will affect other projects. Is it noisy? Does it require quiet? Does it have the potential to be messy? All artists must adhere to Anacostia Park guidelines and rules, with regard to environmental presentation, impact, and general safety.
  • Sustainability. Please consider your materials carefully. Where do they come from? Where will they go after the event is over or when your performance is done? Given the temporary nature of any installation or performance, if possible please consider creating your work from found waste materials, or using waste materials in your performance that can be temporarily appropriated and then reused after your performance is done. One of FIGMENT’s main principles is “Leave No Trace.” We are committed to leaving no physical trace of our activities wherever we gather. Be prepared and committed to clean up your art project after FIGMENT DC is done, to leave Anacostia Park in a better state than you found it.
  • Feasibility (only applicable to Installations). Please note that you will be responsible for the design, construction, maintenance, installation, execution and de-installation of your project. At this time, we believe that all projects will be installed on Saturday, September 27, 2014 between 8am-11am. On a case-by-case basis, and if permitted by Anacostia Park, arrangements may be made to drop off larger pieces and materials Friday night. Cars and trucks are not allowed on the grass in the park, so be prepared to carry your materials to your site. Projects should be designed to be disassembled. De-installation will occur immediately after FIGMENT, on Sunday, September 28, from 5pm-7pm. Your proposal MUST include a breakdown of expected installation time, de-installation time and a cleanup plan. Artists are solely responsible for the successful installation and de-installation of their projects.
  • Budget. Think carefully about the materials that you will be using to create your installation or enhance your performance. Since FIGMENT is a completely volunteer-run organization and event, we are unable to supply materials and there is no funding available for material stipends. We encourage artists to seek outside sources of funding.
  • Community Involvement. FIGMENT is a large-scale participatory arts project that is created by a large community of volunteers. We look forward to your being a part of this community, and to volunteering to help make the FIGMENT event and exhibitions happen.
  • Leave No Trace. Interactive art pieces can frequently have a lot of small pieces involved, such as paint, glitter, or small pieces of paper. Please consider this as you submit your proposal, as FIGMENT is an Leave No Trace event and the park is alongside the river. Wing gusts can quickly make a mess out of the most well thought-out plan.

The FIGMENT team encourages you to consider the following before bringing your project to FIGMENT.

  • The development, production, and experience of FIGMENT are guided by 11 principles, one of which is DECOMMODIFICATION. FIGMENT seeks to create social environments that are unmediated by commercial sponsorships, transactions, or advertising. FIGMENT will not substitute consumption for experience, and you may not sell your art on site.
  • What type of location would suit your project? A grass space? Pavement? Slanted ground? Flat? Water? Anacostia Park offers a range of canvases for your art and diverse potential platforms for your performance. We strongly encourage all artists to visit the beautiful park around the Anacostia Park Skating Pavilion for both inspiration and to see firsthand your placement possibilities before submitting your proposal. Please realize there will be no indoor room available, though we may be able to include your project in or under the skating pavilion. A map of the park can be found here.
  • Artists who bring an installation must plan to personally be on site throughout the event.
  • Artists are responsible for any volunteers or additional performers needed during the event, or for installation or de-installation. FIGMENT staff will work with you to try and assist with volunteer needs, but we cannot promise anything. Remember that FIGMENT is about radical self-reliance. If your project requires a team, bring a team!
  • Artists who are bringing an installation or building a performance area are responsible for transportation of all materials to and from Anacostia Park. Also, FIGMENT will host a series of Meet-and-Greet events leading up to FIGMENT DC. This is a good place to meet other participants and perhaps collaborate on ways to share materials and transportation needs/costs.
  • All artists will be asked to agree to a waiver online before they submit their project, and will be asked to sign the same waiver in person prior to installation or performance setup.

For more information, visit