New Call to Artists! Santa Cruz River: Irvington to Drexel

Oct 21, 2022 | Calls to Artists, Opportunities, Public Art Opportunities

Opportunity Details

Status: Closed
Due date: November 21, 2022 11:59 pm
Managed by: Arts Foundation of Tucson and Southern Arizona, Pima County

We are excited to announce a NEW opportunity for Public Artists:

Public Art Call to Artists / Artist Teams

Santa Cruz River: Irvington to Drexel

Pima County, Flood Control
Budget for Artwork: $35,036
Application Deadline: Monday, November 21, 2022 by 11:59 pm Arizona Time

Link to Guidelines
Link to Application


In collaboration with Pima County, the Arts Foundation for Tucson and Southern Arizona (Arts Foundation) is seeking a qualified Public Artist or Artist Team for commission, through a Request for Qualifications application process (RFQ).


The Pima County Regional Flood Control District (District) has opened a solicitation for bid through Procurement for bids to construct the river park.  The District anticipates beginning construction summer 2022. The project is scheduled to be completed in 120 working days.


The artworks location is within the archeological themed Airport Wash plaza. The theme of the plaza is based on a prehistoric Pleistocene Camelops hesternus bone discovered at this site after the 1983 flood. The artwork theme will highlight this ancient megafauna as well as the camels of the more recent history in the southwest as part of the U.S. Camel Corps in the mid-1800s. The County is interested in an interactive artwork for youth that complements the educational signage in the plaza. The artwork will be developed in collaboration with the Art Selection Panel and the Artist selected for the project during the artwork design phase. Artists interested in creating an interactive artwork for youth that represents regional history and archeology are strongly encouraged to apply.


No specific medium has been identified. However, the artwork must be extremely durable and designed specifically for interaction with youth. The artwork is limited to the plaza and is located along the CHH Loop multi use path. The path is open from dawn to dusk and the artwork should be resilient enough to deter vandalism after hours and maintain its integrity for many years.  Electricity is in the area for the irrigation system however a separate line to the art area is not planned as part of the project construction and would be the responsibility of the public artist to coordinate.

Note: Artists applying with examples of past work in ceramic or glass tile must provide information on long-term durability (10+ years maintenance free in outdoor environments) specific to each example.


The artwork is limited to within the Airport Wash plaza at the designated space (see map 1-2) and will complement educational signage and seating. Placement of the artwork will need to take into consideration that this is a high use path frequented by bicycle and pedestrian traffic and cannot compromise safe use of the path.


The all-inclusive budget of $35,036 for artwork must cover all costs related to: design, materials, production, transportation and installation of the artwork; permits, taxes, and insurance that may be required by the City of Tucson or Pima County; soil analysis, engineering, and mounting for the artwork.


The Public Art opportunity is open to professional Artists and Artist Teams worldwide. All interested Artists and Artist Teams are encouraged and invited to apply, including but not be limited to individuals or teams who are engaged full-time or part-time in the production of eligible works of art, teachers of art, and emerging professional artists (Pima County Administrative Procedure, 3-16, Section II)

Note: Artist Teams are required to select a team lead as a point of contact for all communications. If selected for the project, team members will need to form an LLC or may designate the team lead as signatory in order to contract with the County. If selecting the team lead as signatory, the County will contract with them directly as the “Vendor/Contractor”. Subcontracting and performance of team members is the exclusive responsibility of the Vendor/Contractor. Artists applying as a member of a team are not eligible to also apply as an individual.


The selected Artist/Artist Team will be contracted directly with Pima County to produce the artwork. Once under contract, the Artist/Artist Team will work collaboratively with Pima County, the Arts Foundation, and a seven-person Public Art Project Panel (the Panel) to develop a conceptual design for the artwork.

During the Artwork Design Phase, the Artist/Artist Team will work closely with the Panel on a conceptual design before approval of a  final design by the County Risk Manager, and before entering into the production phase. The Artist/Artist Team may be expected to attend one or more public meetings to present conceptual artwork designs to the broader community (to the extent practicable as determined by the County) during the design process. The Artist/Artist Team will adhere to the criteria outlined in the Pima County Administrative Procedure, 3-16 section VI and detailed in the Artist Contract EXHIBIT ‘A’ SCOPE OF WORK, EXHIBIT ‘B’ PAYMENT, and EXHIBIT ‘C’ PUBLIC ART BUDGET/SCHEDULE FORM. (See supplementary Resources links provided at the top of the Guidelines to view Pima County Administrative Procedures and Artist Contract Template.)


Public art project timelines follow the schedule of the larger improvement. Dates are subject to change.

Friday, October 21, 2022Call to Artist Guidelines Posted
Monday, November 21, 2022Application Deadline at 11:59 p.m. Arizona Time
January 2023Artist Selection Meeting 1 | Select 3 finalists
February 2023Artist Selection Meeting 2 | Finalists Interviews
  March-April 2023Announcement of Recommended Artist(s)
April 2023 – TBDArtwork Design Phase: Panel Meetings, Broader Public Meetings, Production, Installation


If you have questions about the application process or content of your application, please contact us at  or by phone at 520.624.0595.

If you encounter any technical issues with the online application platform, please reach out to the Submittable team at or (855) 467-8264.

To sign up to receive email notifications for future public art opportunities offered through the Arts Foundation, click here

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