Call to Teaching Artists: PAG Summer Youth Public Art Project


Application Deadline: March 31, 2019


Project Description

The Arts Foundation for Tucson and Southern Arizona, in partnership with Tucson Department of Transportation, Tucson City Council, and Pima Association of Governments (PAG), is seeking a teaching artist to work with youth to design and produce artwork in a public transportation setting. The project will occur, and must be completed, during the summer of 2019. Artists with experience working in a collaborative “team teaching environment” and with experience working with high school age youth are encouraged to apply.


Artwork Theme, Location, and Media

This year’s project theme will be “Bridging the Community”. The location is a pedestrian overpass located on 22nd Street, across from Palo Verde High School. There is a desire for either tile mural artworks on the support columns or steel cut-out artworks that can be attached to the protective fencing and stair handrail. Artist working in steel or in ceramic tile are encouraged to apply.



The goal of the project is to provide youth with an opportunity to be employed and participate in all phases of the design and installation of a public artwork under the guidance of a professional artist. The outcome will be artwork of a quality comparable to current public art standards with the teaching artist serving as a mentor to youth artists. The selected artist and students, in collaboration with staff from the Tucson Department of Transportation, Ward 2 City Council office, and the Arts Foundation will determine the design of artwork. The design must be approved prior to production and will follow the 1% for Art program guidelines.  Special consideration must be given to sustainability and maintenance of the artwork.

The selected artist will be under contract to the Arts Foundation.



$25,000 is available for the production of artwork including the artist fee, materials, tools, refreshments, equipment, installation, etc. A separate budget for 1 artist assistant and youth artist’s wages is in place.


Teaching Artist Responsibilities

The teaching artist will work with an artist assistant and up to eight youth artists in the design, production, and installation of the artwork. The selected artist will supervise the artist assistant and youth artists, create and manage the project timeline, manage the project budget, develop and implement key mentorship goals, incorporate skill development into the project scope, and complete the project by August 15, 2019. There is no designated workspace; the selected artists ideally should have appropriate studio, work site space, or a suggested space. Alternative locations used in the past have included work space in charter schools or other facilities arranged by the artist.

The teaching artist is expected to work with youth for an eight-week period, during summer break from school, from mid-May to mid-July 2019 with project preparation and meetings with the Department of Transportation and the Arts Foundation beginning in early April 2019.

The teaching artist may work with the Arts Foundation staff in the hiring of the artist assistant and youth artists, who typically are students in a local area high school. The “artist assistant” is 18 to 21 years of age with “youth artists” being 16 to 18 years of age.

The selected teaching artist may recommend an Artist Assistant for consideration.


Artist’s Project Hours

The artist will provide supervision and work with the youth weekdays generally between the hours of 8:00-12:00 pm, from mid to late May to mid to late July 2019, Monday through Friday (legal holidays excepted).

  • 4 hours per day with youth
  • 7 hours per week for planning & meetings

Selected teaching artists should anticipate approximately 20 hours for project development and participation in hiring of an artist assistant and youth artists prior to beginning the eighth week work period with the youth.


Minimum Teaching Artist Requirements

  • Current Basic First Aid Certificate
  • Current Basic CPR Certificate
  • Finger prints
  • Arizona Drivers License
  • Proof of Auto Insurance
  • General Liability Insurance
  • Résumé
  • A.A. or B.A. in a related field
  • Experience in teaching visual arts
  • Experience in Public Art

The selected artist must provide written evidence of satisfaction of the above stated requirements.


Application Process:  Submissions are accepted online only.

  1. Statement of interest with outline of projects relevant or similar to this project.
  2. Résumé that includes relevant applicant education, visual arts teaching, and public art experience. List projects similar to this project. Most all file formats are accepted including DOC, TXT, RTF, PDF.
  3. Artist Bio, Most all file formats are accepted including DOC, TXT, RTF, PDF.
  4. 10 digital images of your artwork in JPG file format. Teams must adhere to the total of eight images. Individual files should be named to correspond to the image list requested below. The JPG file names must include your name, a number, and the image title. A suggested convention for naming the files starts with your last name followed by a number (1-10) and then a brief title of the artwork (Example: Jones-1-Freeflight.jpg).
  5. An image list, organized to correspond with the image order, identifying each artwork by title, year completed, medium, dimensions, and brief description.



Teaching Artist Call to Artists issued: March 2, 2019

Online Application due: March 31, 2019 (11:59pm)

3 finalists interviewed with artist selected: April 2019

Selected artist begins planning: May 2019

Artist Assistant selected with interviews and hiring: June 2019

Youth Artists and Artist Assistant hired: April/May 2019

Project underway: Early June through end of July 2019

Project complete and dedication: August 2019


For more information contact the Manager of Public Art, Jeff DaCosta at or (520)460-4506.

Due March 31, 2019
Issued March 2, 2019
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