Call for Artists: TCF Center seeks Iconic Public Art Civic Sculpture in Detroit

Call for Artists: TCF Center seeks Iconic Public Art Civic Sculpture in Detroit

TCF Center is seeking proposals for a large-scale exterior sculpture which will reside outside the beautifully renovated convention center located in downtown Detroit. The winning selection will be placed in the center of the main entrance circle drive. Formerly known as Cobo Center, the newly renamed TCF Center, is Detroit’s premier convention center, originally named for Albert E. Cobo, mayor of Detroit from 1950 to 1957.

This new sculpture will significantly enhance the cultural offerings in downtown Detroit through its affirmative message, aesthetic impact and prominent location to celebrate Detroit with local residents and the 1.4 million annual visitors to TCF Center.

Currently there are only a few truly iconic sculptures that define the global and innovative City of Detroit, including Spirit of Detroit by Marshall Fredericks (1958), Joe Louis Memorial by Robert Graham (1986) and Transcending by David Barr and Sergio De Giusti (2003).

Applying artists are urged to consider the physical placement, material and size in their proposals. Three artists will be invited to create a maquette of their design, and one proposal will be awarded a budget of $250,000 to support its conceptualization, fabrication and installment, with an additional $50,000 for the artist. Preferred themes may reflect the positive changes and growth ongoing in Detroit and SE Michigan, the strong spirit of innovation and design, the global impact of Detroit, renaissance of the region, etc.

The sculpture will become part of the current art collection with nearly 100 works on display, includes pieces by such artists as Carl Milles, Gilda Snowden, Sergio De Giusti, Tyree Guyton and a recent commission for a large-scale fresco by Hubert Massey titled “Detroit: Crossroad of Innovation.”


January — Call for Artists opens

February 28 – RSVP required to attend mandatory meeting at TCF Center, Detroit.

March 1 – Tour for all interested artists.  Please note the March 1, 2020 meeting is mandatory. Either the artist or the artist’s representative must be in attendance. For those unable to physically attend and with special permission, the meeting will be live streamed.  Please RSVP by February 28.  There will be an information packet with detailed instructions for this project distributed in advance to all who RSVP. It is to your benefit to RSVP early and to attend in person. This will allow you to review this information in advance of the meeting and to see the site, building and surroundings in person.

June 1 – Deadline for proposals. The entry deadline is June 2, 2020 at 5pm.

June: Jury will review proposals

July 15 – top three proposals will be announced. These artists will receive a $5,000 stipend to create a maquette of their proposed sculpture.

September: Jury will review three designs and present to DRCFA Art Foundation Board for approval

October 1 – final selection to be announced.

In 2010, the DRFCA began a $279 million expansion and renovation to Cobo Center. Over the course of five years numerous improvements were made such as an electrical upgrade, improvements to the loading dock, repairs to roof leaks, technology upgrades and new catering features including the Detroit Made Kitchen food court. The number of meeting rooms has increased to 100 and there are now three ballrooms, one of which is the converted arena, a 40,000 square foot space now called the Grand Riverview Ballroom. A three-story, 30,000 square foot atrium with a view of the river was also added and public access all around the building has been improved.

Selection Criteria:

Proposals will be judged on artistic merit, capability, budget and impact as evidenced by this proposal, past work and supporting materials. The Selection Committee will review all proposals and they will select the top three designs. These three artists will be invited to create a maquette of their proposal and they will be given a $5,000 stipend to complete this stage. Each completed maquette will be presented to the DRCFA Art Foundation Board and from these the final design will be selected and awarded the commission. This includes a budget up to $250,000 and a $50,000 commission paid to the artist(s).

Guidelines: Proposals are accepted for individual artists or collaborative teams. Artwork proposals are limited to a permanent, freestanding, site-specific sculpture. Artists are urged to consider the physical placement, material and size in their proposals. Due to the permanence of the installation, seasonal or ephemeral work will not be given consideration. It is expected that the selected sculpture will remain in good working order over time, withstanding harsh Michigan weather. Materials used in construction should be safe and appropriate to a public outdoor environment. Certain work might require the submission of additional information or materials for consideration.

Application Materials/Requirements: Submission must include the following items listed below.

1.   Resume

2.   Artist Statement

3.   Proposal. Five page max. Proposal should be clear, specific and outline a plan. Consideration should be given to Guidelines, Budget and Installation.

4. Budget. Two page max. Budget should support activities, purchases, costs, etc. related to proposal.

5.   Media. Up to 10 images and 1 video are accepted. You are required to include a rendering of proposed project as one of your images or videos. Image files should be labeled with the last name, first name and number, indicating your preferred viewing order.

6. Image list of previous work: title, materials, size, year completed, dimensions and optional description for each image.

Contact Email:
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: National
State: Michigan
Entry Deadline: 6/2/20

The post Call for Artists: TCF Center seeks Iconic Public Art Civic Sculpture in Detroit appeared first on PLAYGROUND DETROIT.