Interactive H Street – A Pop-Up Public Art Project

By Editorial Team on July 8, 2010

H Street Icon | CALLS FOR ENTRY |

DEADLINE:  Monday, JULY 12, 2010 at 10AM

Note DCCAH website keeps changing the deadline time for Monday; It not states 10AM

EDITOR’S NOTE: East City Art just found out about this proposal as we went to publish.  The DCCAH put this proposal out very quickly and has only solicited proposals for a short two week period and it has not been well publicized.  The original deadline for this event was Friday July 9 but has been extended to Monday July 12 at 10am.  We have pleaded to extended the deadline so that more local artists could participate but this is as far as we got.  We will keep readers abreast of all developments related to this Call for Entry.

Public Invitation

The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH), DC Creates! Public Art Program would like to invite you to participate in our “Pop-Up Public Art Project” on a donated plot of land at 3rd and H Street, NE is a partnership initiative between DCCAH, the DC Office of Planning and the H Street BID to activate “Interactive H Street”.  This initiative will establish a 14-block creative corridor along H Street NE, creating a framework for civic innovation; activation of dormant real estate; and creative business incubation. This project will make a critical contribution toward H Street becoming a destination for arts, business and community experiences in city design.

“Interactive H Street” is inspired by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Mayors’ Institute on City Design (MICD).  MICD has helped transform communities through design by preparing mayors to be the chief urban designs for their cities.  MICD mayors know that the arts and culture contribute greatly as core components in building livable and sustainable communities.  Cities across the country create diverse projects through the support of the MICD program.   Projects include planning, design, and arts engagement.

Description of the Pop-Up Public Art Opportunity:

The selected artist or artist team will design, fabricate and install temporary public displays of artwork on 1.4 acres of dormant green space at 3rd and H Street, NE from July 30th, 2010 – September 30, 2010.  Potential projects may be designed for site-specific installation.  Contemporary and interdisciplinary approaches, innovative uses (or re-uses) of materials and new technologies are encouraged.  Community-centric and engagement projects are encouraged. Note that community programming may take place on this property during this time. Once development begins at the site DCCAH will work with the selected artist(s) to move the work to another location in DC.

Work must be durable with minimal maintenance in an outdoor setting.  There are several wells in the ground and utility lines that run through the site that must be avoided.  The selected artist(s) will be responsible for installation and removal of the artwork at the site.  No works or materials deemed to be dangerous, toxic, or hazardous to public safety will be accepted and all construction methods on site must be adequate and safe for public interaction.  DCCAH will not be responsible for any artwork that is damaged or removed during the exhibition.  Any work left by the artist(s) at the end of the exhibition will be considered abandoned property and may be disposed of.  The site must be returned to its original condition at the end of the exhibition.


H Street, NE from Union Station to the Starburst Intersection, where Benning Road, H Street, Maryland Avenue and Bladensburg Road merge, is currently going through a major street renovation to install the streetcar, which will provide service between the Gallery Place/Chinatown and the Minnesota Avenue Metros.  This corridor has also seen ongoing rehabilitation and streetscape projects that have provided significant improvements facing H Street.  The corridor marks a digital and demographic divide of residents on either side.

For more information about H Street, NE visit the following websites:

Great Street information:

For more information on the future development of the 3rd and H Street, NE site:,A,1365,Q,610207.asp

Click HERE for images of the site.

Exhibition Goals

Potential projects should reflect the historic, environmental, cultural, functional, urban design, and/or aesthetic parameters of the site and should be well researched, well planned and feasible.

·       Showcase artworks that are innovative and go beyond the ordinary art scene;
·       Activate a dormant site;
·       Create partnership opportunities between the private sector and creative community to support the city’s economic efforts;
·       Create artworks that raise the creative profile of the city;
·       Attract residents and visitors to explore beyond the monumental core;
·       Create artworks that can be moved to other vacant sites around the city;
·       Create opportunities for artists to experiment with approaches that are not possible through permanent commissions;
·       Gateway or entrance works;
·       Performance works of all kinds;
·       Utilization of fences or screening devises;
·       Amenities for visitors and residents – such as benches, bike racks, shade structures, recycling and trash collection receptacles;
·       Establish play areas or game sites;
·       Loan of existing artwork, such as sculptures or assemblages.

Eligible Entities

This competition is open to DC artists, curators or non-profit visual arts organizations that have curatorial capacity and an interest in public art. We strongly encourage applicants to collaborate with a DC arts organization or with a civic organization to provide local insight necessary to curate the exhibition. The applicant must meet all of the following criteria to apply:

1.      Have a principal place of business located within the District of Columbia or current resident of the District of Columbia.
2.     Demonstrate pr
ior experience in creating temporary projects within the last 5 years.


Each selected artist(s) will receive $70,000 to execute the selected project(s).  These funds are available for all costs associated with the design, fabrication, insurance, permits, installation, and final documentation.  Selected artists will be asked to submit a budget and budget narrative.  Please note that a maximum of 15% of the total budget may be allocated for project management.  Selected artists are encouraged to leverage their projects with other funding and resources.

Tentative Schedule:
July 12, 2010: Proposal Deadline
Mid July: Proposals Selected
Mid July: Execution of grant agreement to DCCAH
End July:Installation of Selected Proposals
Early August:Launch event
End of September:Remove works from site

Selection Process

A Selection Committee, representing diverse interests and expertise, will review submissions and recommend projects for this site.  Final approval may be subject to review from community groups as well.  The curators will then enter into an agreement with DCCAH for fabrication and installation of the approved proposals.  DCCAH reserves the right to make no selection from the submitted applications.  Selected proposals must be ready to commence 10 days after award notification, and be installed within 15 days of award notification.

Submission Materials
Applicants must include:
1. A maximum 2-page letter that:
·       describes your interest in the project and experience with temporary works,
·       addresses your experience and interest in placing works in public spaces,
·       provides your thoughts and suggestions on working with potential partners,
·       provides preliminary thoughts regarding programming,
·       addresses the exhibition goals and review criteria, and

2.  A Project Proposal that:
·       Identifies a theme.  Keep in mind the project may be placed in other parts of the city.
·       Provides a scaled layout of art placement.
·       Outlines fabrication and installation methods and materials/equipment that you will use.

3.  A resume (maximum 2 pages). If a team is submitting, a resume should be submitted for each member of the team. If an organization is submitting, an organizational description should be included along with the lead curators resume.

4. Two references from previous curatorial projects that include the reference’s name, institution, current telephone and email contact information.

5. Description and collateral materials for previous projects.

6. Up to 10 images (no less than 5 images) of previous projects on CD or DVD. Or, 5 images and up to two WEBSITES and/or VIDEOS – 60 second clips only on DVD.

·       File Format — Images must be no more than 1920 pixels on the longest side and “high quality” JPG file format at 300 dpi. Do not submit TIFFs, PDFs, Word or any other non-JPG formats.

·       File Labeling — Files must be titled with a number indicating the viewing order, followed by the curator’s last name. Use “0” in front of single digit numbers. Do not use more than 30 characters; use only letters, numbers and underscores. (Example: 01_Smith; 02_Smith. Mac OS users include “.jpg” at the end of each image title. Example: 01_Smith.jpg)

7. An annotated work sample list that indicates information about each project including: the artists involved, a brief description of the project concept (100 words or less), media involved, date, total budget/cost and host institution and/or partners involved.

Submission materials will not be returned. Submit only digital materials or hard copy reproductions. Please submit any written materials on plain white 8 ½” X 11” paper. Please do not staple or bind application materials.

For More Information and to RSVP for the Information Meeting Contact Rachel Dickerson at (202) 724-5617 or

Submit to:
Interactive H Street Pop Up Public Art Project
Attn: Rachel Dickerson
1371 Harvard Street, NW; Washington DC 20009