Burlington City Arts

Saffron Fabric Design and Installation

Initial Deadline June 19, 2017

Project Description

Burlington City Arts is seeking qualifications from artists/artist-led teams for a temporary outdoor public art project.  The project will incorporate 18,500 square feet of fabric pieces in outdoor installation that creates visibility for environmental concerns, particularly those related to watershed systems and Lake Champlain, and connect sites of the exhibition Of Land and Local. Specific locations include Shelburne Farms, Shelburne, Vermont and/or City Hall Park, Burlington Vermont. 

Installation is scheduled to coincide with BCA’s multi-site exhibition Of Land and Local  in September 2017. Of Land and Local is an project presented in partnership with Shelburne Farms that focuses on artists' associations and interpretation of place and environmental stewardship. In 2017, themes will delve further into last year’s focus on watershed and investigate ideas of place, conservation, commodification, and water’s cultural role within community.


The budget for this project is not to exceed $15,000, which will include artist fees, materials and installation costs above and beyond the provided fabric.

Estimated Timeline

June 19, 2017: Resumes and portfolios (Qualifications) due
June 26, 2017: Selection of  finalists
July 24, 2017: Finalists proposals due
July 31, 2017: Selection of Final Proposal
July 31- September 18, 2017 Fabrication and design
September 18-22, 2017: Installation
October 5-31: 2017 Exhibition opens at Shelburne Farms (Oct 5)  and the BCA Center (Oct 20)

Materials to be Submitted by June 19 in response to this call to artists

  1. Current resume (.doc or PDF) with hyperlink to online portfolio OR attached PDF portfolio of up to 10 images of past projects. Include current address, phone number and email on resume.
  2. Cover letter expressing interest and briefly describing possible approaches to sites in the context of the exhibition Of Land and Local.​
  3. Finalists will receive honorariums of $250 each to develop full proposals.

Selection of Finalists

A review panel comprised of artists, BCA Curators, Shelburne Farms staff and community members will review submissions from this call to artists and select up to 5 artists/teams to develop full proposals. Finalists will be selected based on the following:

  • Artistic quality of portfolio
  • Professionalism of submitted materials
  • Demonstrated previous experience with similarly scaled public art projects
  • Demonstrated ability of artist (or team) to carry out a project within budget and on time

Finalists will receive honorariums of $250 each to develop full proposals.

Specifications for Design of Full Proposals

  • Design may include any medium but must take advantage of 18,500 square feet of primarily saffron/gold with some tan, rust, silver, red, and maroon iridescent fabric
  • The fabric is comprised of 235 extremely durable large and small, square, light weight rectangle, oblong, and round pieces
  • Design must be safe, discourage vandalism, and not interfere with the daily uses and functions of the site
  • Design must withstand elements for the duration of exhibition, up to 30 days
  • Artist will be responsible for maintenance of work during exhibition period

Criteria for Selection of Final Proposals

The same review panel will review final proposals based on the following:

Aesthetic Considerations

  • Exhibits strong artistic concept and design
  • Creates dramatic visibility for project themes
  • Uses the site in a compelling and effective manner

Thematic Considerations

  • Integrates the themes of the Of Land and Local 2017 project, including the connectivity of the watershed, climate change, the health of Lake Champlain, environmental stewardship, etc
  • Connects Of Land and Local sites to one another


  • Proposal is coherent and well-presented
  • Renderings  are professionally executed and provide a clear and realistic depiction of plans
  • Description is clear, concise and inspired
  • Previous experience completing public art of similar scope indicated
  • Clear understanding of costs associated with proposal outlined in budget
  • Demonstrated ability of artist to carry out the project within budget and on time
  • Demonstrated ability of the artist to work within a complex process and remain flexible with project changes and direction

Suitability to the Site

  • Compatible with the uses of the site
  • Durability over period of installation
  • Respects concern for public safety

Materials to be Submitted for Finalist Proposals

  1. Detailed scale plan or scale model of proposed design
  2. Perspective drawings of proposed design
  3. Narrative description of proposed design, not to exceed 500 words
  4. Detailed budget (.doc or Excel)

For more information, contact Ashley Jimenez  at 802-865-7165 or

This project is made possible by the generosity of Martha Perkins and many donors. 

Fabric Images

Shelburne Farms Site

City Hall Park