Request for Artist Proposals

Seeking artists over age 50 for a project sponsored by AARP Arkansas!


OVERVIEW

In celebration of the second year of public access at Wilson Springs Preserve in Fayetteville, the Northwest Arkansas Land Trust is partnering with AARP Arkansas to commission the creation and installation of a new public art sculpture at the preserve. We are currently requesting proposals from regional artists over the age of 50.


ABOUT THE NORTHWEST ARKANSAS LAND TRUST

​The purpose of the land trust is to protect quality of life for all people in Northwest Arkansas, including clean air, clean water, wildlife habitat, abundant scenic beauty, local food supplies, recreational opportunities, and our natural heritage, for the benefit of the community and the many generations to come.


Today, the population of Northwest Arkansas is reaching toward 600,000, and the growth trend continues. Benton and Washington counties alone gain an average of more than 34 new residents every day. Our region is well known for its abundant scenic beauty, clean air, clean water, wildlife habitats, outdoor recreation, family farms, and rural charm. Although urban growth has brought many amenities to the region, we must protect these natural areas that provide such a high quality of life.​


The NWA Land Trust provides local, voluntary, and permanent land protection services to landowners and municipalities who wish to forever conserve the special places that define our region. To date, more than 5,000 acres are under permanent protection of the land trust, with five properties open to public access.


​SCOPE OF WORK

"Poppy Seed" by Stuart Fulbright, 2019
"Poppy Seed" by Stuart Fulbright, 2019

We are inviting artists to submit proposals for the following categories: ​

  • Sculptures/Installations - large scale sculptural works that will be permanently installed at Wilson Springs Preserve. Installations that guests can interact with are encouraged.

​Projects should tie back to at least one of the public benefits of conservation: clean water, healthy ecosystems and habitats, and access to nature and outdoor recreation. Read more about the benefits of land conservation here.


​SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS

Wilson Springs Preserve is a natural wetland preserve with no permanent infrastructure. You will not have access to power, walls, buildings, or structures. Sculptures/Installations will need to withstand weather conditions including rain, wind, and occasional flooding.

Due to the fragile nature of the preserve, site placement for this installation is limited to the “Savannah Loop” (see map). Vehicle access inside the preserve is very limited, so consider that in planning the execution/installation of your proposal.


Public access is available every day from dawn until dusk. The trailhead can be accessed from the south side of the Sam’s Club parking lot on HWY 112 in Fayetteville. Artists are encouraged to visit the preserve and consider site placement. Specific questions about the preserve can be addressed to Director of Land Protection and Stewardship Marson Nance at mnance@nwalandturst.org.


​JURY PROCESS & CRITERIA

​Proposals from each category will be reviewed by a jury consisting of land trust staff, project partners, and experienced arts and culture producers. Winning proposals will be announced on October 18, 2021. Each proposal will be judged on the following criteria:​

  • Artistic merit

  • Does this project demonstrate artistic excellence?

  • Can this artist/group reasonably execute this project in the time frame given? (see TIMELINE section)

  • Does the artist/group follow conservation principals, and are they good community stewards?

  • Adherence to one or more of the public benefits of land conservation

  • Does this project address at least one of the benefits of land conservation: clean water, ​healthy ecosystems and habitat, and/or access to nature and outdoor recreation?

  • Interaction with audience

  • Is there opportunity for audience to interact/engage with this project?

  • Environmental impact

  • How will this project impact the surrounding nature preserve, including plants and animals that may encounter it? ​

  • Sustainability

  • Is this project sourced from sustainable/renewable materials? ​

  • Does this project create waste, and if so what waste is created?

  • Site feasibility

  • Can this project be installed and function as intended in the natural environment? ​

  • Proposed budget

  • Can this project be reasonably executed with the stated budget?​

​PROJECT AWARDS

​The total project award is $3,000.


ELIGIBILITY ​

Artists over the age of 50 currently living and working in the greater Northwest Arkansas region are eligible to apply (view our service area online). Only artists with demonstrated experience should apply. Artists are allowed to submit more than one proposal, but no more than 3 for consideration.


TIMELINE

Accepting proposals: September 10 – October 8, 2021

Jury evaluation: October 11-15

Winning proposals announced: October 18

Project build/installation: October 18 – November 30, 2021

​APPLICATION MATERIALS

Please send the following materials, written in a word document and images as JPEGS or copied in document, to Lauren Embree at lembree@nwalandtrust.org by 11:59pm CST on Friday, October 8.

  • Brief bios of artists involved in project and include websites if applicable. (100 words per bio)

  • Project Narrative – What do you want to do? Include installation logistics, materials, artist intent, and, most importantly, how it relates to the tenets of conservation mentioned in this RFP. (500 words max)

  • Images

  • Include images of any comparable projects members of your team have undertaken. Caption with date, title, medium, and place installed (no more than 5 images).

  • Include drawings or renderings of proposed project in environment. See maps and images of Wilson Springs here. (no more than 3 images/renderings/drawings per project).

  • Timeline: Include your proposal for build time, installation, and a plan for repair if damaged. If you have any questions on the application process, please email Lauren Embree, Director of Communications and Development at lembree@nwalandtrust.org.