9-month loans of large-scale artwork to be installed and displayed at Westport Public Schools

WESTPORT ARTS ADVISORY COMMITTEE (WAAC) in partnership with WESTPORT PUBLIC ART COLLECTIONS COMMITTEE (WestPAC) is requesting proposals from Fairfield County-based artists for 9-month loans of large-scale artwork to be installed and displayed at Westport Public Schools’ Bedford Middle School (BMS) and Coleytown Middle School (CMS) in Westport, CT.

WestPAC and WAAC seek to expand our mission of bringing original artworks to our schools and our communities with loans of work by local and regional artists representing varied and diverse voices. The goal is to help stimulate discussion and connect with art and other subject-area curricula in the middle schools. In addition to Westport Public Schools faculty and administrators, we aim to involve students in the selection process and in developing school tours, programs, and interviews with the artist(s) hosted by the schools’ news outlets.

2021-22 Pilot Project:
In February 2021, the newly reopened CMS hosted a pilot of this program displaying Eric Chiang’s Are We Born Connected? and History of Civilizations. Students and teachers voted on three proposed works. Chiang subsequently lent and installed his work in the renovated main stairwell, one painting at a time, through June 2022.
We are now seeking to bring this concept of loaned contemporary art by Fairfield County-based artists to the BMS Library Media Center and to continue the CES program.

SUBMISSION PARAMETERS:
● Subject, genre, or style. Original works of art are to demonstrate artistic excellence and be appropriate for the main audience of students in grades 6-8 (ages 11-15) and for a school learning environment. We are especially interested in artworks that can stimulate dialogue about issues of contemporary or historical significance
● Painting, photography, textiles, or other two-dimensional media suitable for safely and securely hanging on the wall in elevated locations in the schools using the STAS mini-rail and pylon cord hanging system in place at both locations.
● The artist or artist team is responsible for the installation of the art, with assistance of WAAC/WestPAC committee members and WPS facilities staff, if needed and with advance notice
● Artwork minimum & maximum dimensions: The accepted artwork could be an overall large-scale work or a series of related works installed side-by-side, where no individual object’s horizontal dimension is less than 36 inches. Maximum dimensions are listed below under each site. Note: If you have a concept that doesn’t meet these requirements, please contact us prior to your submission.

Bedford Middle School, Library Media Center
Maximum dimensions of artwork: 9 feet height x 14 feet width

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coleytown Middle School, Main Stairwell
Maximum dimensions of artwork: 6 feet height x 19 feet width

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

● A Loan Agreement will be issued by WestPAC between lender and borrower.
● Works will be Insured by WPS/Town fine art insurance. Required appraisal or
document providing current valuation of artwork(s) to be provided by the artist.
● There is no financial award associated with the artist(s) selection, and no expense reimbursement to the artist(s) for time and materials in creating or installing selected work(s).

TIMELINE:
Proposals deadline: September 23, 2022
Studio visits and selection process: Oct 3 – October 14, 2022 Selection committee announcement: October 19, 2022 Installation: late October – early November 2022 Deinstallation: end of June 2023 (after close of school year)

SUBMISSIONS:
Interested artists must submit a short proposal by email to westpac@westportps.org by September 23rd, 2022. Please include and attach as files:
● Short description of 1) the proposed artwork, including dimensions (H x W X D inches) and approximate weight, and 2) how you envision the work engaging a middle school audience and the school community at large and 3) what excites you most about this project.
● Full view digital images (3) of each proposed work and of its installation (2), if available; please send .jpg files (300 dpi, 4MB max).
● Artist statement on proposed work(s)
● CV/resume and short bio for the press.
● Link to your art website and/or art social media sites.
We envision this as a unique opportunity for your work to be viewed and appreciated daily by middle school students, teachers, and staff.
Artists not selected this year may reapply for consideration for loans in subsequent years, as we hope to make this an annual program.
Questions? Want to learn more? Email westpac@westportps.org Note: Please add your name and project title in the email subject line

CONTACTS
● Kathie Bennewitz, Town Curator and Ive Covaci, WestPAC Chair: westpac@westportps.org
● Nancy Diamond, WAAC Chair: WAAC@westportct.gov

ABOUT

Westport Public Art Collections is a cultural asset of Westport, CT, with over 2,000 original works of fine art in a broad range of media by notable American artists, giants of the international art world and by important artists who established their homes and studios in the Westport-Weston community. Its committee members display original works of art from the collection throughout Westport’s school and town buildings to create visually stimulating learning and work environments. By observing fine art first-hand and every day, students, educators, staff and residents can pursue their own path of enjoyment and discovery.