CTA: Reid Park Zoo – Master Plan Implementation – Phase I

Call to Artists/Teams for Public Art, Request for Qualifications

Reid Park Zoo – Master Plan Implementation – Phase I

City of Tucson, Arizona


  • Budget for Artwork: $279,000
  • Application Deadline: March 5, 2020

Submissions are accepted online only. See additional details in the Application Procedure Section below.


Project Description:

The City of Tucson and the Reid Park Zoo are seeking an artist, artist(s) or an artist team to join a multi-talented group of architects/designers, engineers, landscape architects, plus other technical specialists engaged in the overall design of the project.

The Reid Park Zoo’s mission is “to create inspiring memories for all by connecting people and animals to ensure the protection of wild animals and wild places.” As a conservation-based community resource, the use of sustainable products and features is encouraged. The improvements consist of a new flamingo exhibit, renovation of the existing main entry area, a new play area and a new expansion to the zoo representative of Asia. The latter will include a new public pavilion building and reptile house, as well as tiger, sloth bear, siamang, fishing cat and red panda exhibits. The expansion is approximately 4 acres.


Project Location:

Reid Park Zoo, 3400 East Zoo Court, Tucson, AZ 85716


Link to Construction Plans:



Project Status:

The project is being implemented in 2 phases with construction dates currently projected as follows:

  • Flamingo & Front Entry – April, 2020 to October, 2020
  • Play Area and Asia Expansion – January, 2021 to July, 2022


Art Opportunities:

There are a multitude of opportunities on this project for an array of mediums, including traditional pieces, such as sculptures and murals, however, the building
elements themselves will provide numerous prospects, involving pavements/pedestrian walks, benches, fencing & gates, signage and themed, shotcrete walls & structures. The zoo is also envisioning a large (approximately 10’ tall) ‘Zoo’ sign at the main entry, where they are looking for something striking and exceptional. Work involving educational elements are also encouraged.

It should be noted that chances are high, the work will be outdoors and subject to the elements. The work will also likely result in very high interaction with patrons and as such, all work must be extremely safe and durable. All work of a structural nature must include the services of a structural engineer, registered in the state of Arizona.



The artwork design timeline for the artist/team work is expected to align with the design and construction of the project with the art installation anticipated to be completed before construction completes for the various phases (if work is proposed in a particular area, it should be completed in conjunction with the construction of that phase) The selected artist should be prepared to immediately begin working with the selection panel, once legally under contract to the City.



All interested artists are encouraged and invited to apply. Artists previously experienced working with design teams and who currently possess the capacity to deliver the results of a large scale, long-term project are of particular interest to the panel.


Art Budget:

The budget of $279,000 must be all-inclusive, covering all costs related to design, engineering (if applicable), materials, production, transportation and installation of the artwork, plus costs for all permits, taxes, and insurance that may be required by the City of Tucson, Pima County, or the State of Arizona.



The selected artist is expected to attend up to three public meetings during the design process in addition to meeting with the design team, potentially monthly,
throughout the design process. The artist must meet with the Project Panel organized by the Arts Foundation for review, comments, and approval of the design before officially beginning artwork production.


Selection Process:

An artist panel, composed of technical project professionals, professional and amateur artists, as well as local community members, will select up to
three finalists, based upon qualifications as demonstrated through their materials submitted in the call to artists. Interviews with finalists will be scheduled once the three finalists are determined. If preliminary designs are required, each finalist will receive a $100.00 honorarium for the development of the preliminary proposal and will be expected to present their proposals during the interview. If preliminary designs are not required, the finalists will be required to present samples of their past work results. The Arts Foundation is unable to pay travel expenses.

Calls to Artists issued by the Arts Foundation are available on our website at https://artsfoundtucson.org/artists-organizations/artist-organization-opportunities/ Internet access is available at all public libraries. Artists may sign up to receive email notification of public art opportunities offered through the Arts Foundation
at http://artsfoundtucson.org/about/.


Application Procedure:

Please follow the instructions below. The Arts Foundation reserves the right to reject any or all applications not following the stated

Online Application Procedure.

Artists applying for this commission must submit the following materials online through the application host Submittable. Please click on the link to apply: https://artsfoundtucson.submittable.com/submit/159371/reid-park-zoo-public-art-master-plan-phase-1-call-to-artists

Note: You may apply as an individual artist or as an artist team. You cannot apply twice, once in each category.

The following materials are required:

  1. Bio and Body of Work Content, a short, simple, video, no longer than three (3) minutes in length covering your personal background and body of work. This video will not be assessed on the production quality of the video – please feel free to use the video function on your phone – it is the information that you discus and how it relates to your portfolio images that will be considered by the panel.
    There are many ways to film a short video; you can film a video on a digital camera, your cell phone, or a webcam on a computer. Feel free to incorporate other images or examples you might have. Videos may be uploaded as a file or linked from a video hosting site (such as Youtube or Vimeo) by a URL in the Submittable application portal.
  2. Résumé, not to exceed 2 pages, which highlights pertinent experience. If applying as a team, limit each team member resume to 1 page.  Do not include portrait photographs in the resume. Most all file formats are accepted including DOC, TXT, RTF, PDF.
  3. Image List, organized to correspond with the image order, identifying each artwork by artist, title, year completed, medium, dimensions, and a brief description, but not to exceed 1 page in length. Most all file formats are accepted including DOC, TXT, RTF, PDF.
  4. 10 digital images of artwork in JPG file format. Teams must adhere to the total of eight images for the team application. Individual files should be named to correspond to the image list requested below. The JPG file names must include the artist name, an image number, and the image title. A suggested convention for naming the files starts with your last name followed by a number (1-8) and then a brief title of the artwork (Example: Jones-1-Freeflight.jpg).

Receipt. Submittable will send you an email acknowledgement receipt, within 48 hours


Online Application Deadline: March 5, 2020



(Please note: The schedule below is tentative, as capital improvement project schedules typically have many variables that influence when tasks may be
able to start and finish)

  • Call to Artists Issue Date: February 5. 2020
  • Application Deadline: March 5, 2020
  • Selection Process: March, 2020
  • Approval and Contracting: April-May, 2020
  • Artwork Design & Permitting: June – August, 2020
  • Production and Installation: September, 2020 – July, 2022

Note: The above timeline is tentative and highly dependent on the proposed work(s) and locations in regard to correlated construction schedules.


For more information, contact Jeff DaCosta at (520) 460-4506 or jdacosta@artsfoundtucson.org.

DueMarch 5, 2020
Issued DueFebruary 5, 2020
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