Oswego seeks artist for manhole cover art project
The Village of Oswego is seeking artists to submit proposed artistic designs for manhole covers to be placed throughout portions of downtown Oswego.
The project is an early step in establishing a vibrant permanent public art collection in Oswego, part of the mission of the Cultural Arts Commission, which has been laying the groundwork over the past several months to develop an aesthetic and guiding principles for a public arts program.
Approximately 20 manhole covers will need to be ordered for new developments in the downtown, including streets around the Reserve at Hudson Crossing and a pedestrian-friendly thoroughfare on the former Village Hall block.
“It might seem an unusual site for a piece of art, but we’re excited about the possibilities that might be out there to incorporate a little something unexpected in our downtown,” said Jenette Sturges, Community Engagement Coordinator for the Village of Oswego. “Covers in a lot of American cities include city logos or symbols, but other countries get very playful with their manhole covers, turning a utilitarian bit of infrastructure into something engaging and fun. We are excited to see what local artists propose.”
Since the new covers will need to be purchased for upcoming development projects, this call for artists allows the Village to add to the public art collection at minimal additional cost.
The design for the manhole covers will be selected based on the artistic merits of the design and how well it builds upon the established aesthetic. Complete guidelines on how to apply, plus information on the downtown Oswego aesthetic and design constraints of the manhole covers are available on the Village’s website at www.oswegoil.org/business-and-development/bids-and-rfps.aspx.
Artists and designers can submit up to three different proposed designs each before Thursday, Jan. 17.
A selection committee, including members of the Cultural Arts Commission, Village staff, residents, business owners and other community stakeholders, will decide on approximately three finalist designs, which will be awarded $200 each. Following consultation with the manhole cover manufacturer, a single final design will be selected, awarded $1,000, fabricated, and placed throughout downtown.
To submit designs for consideration, review the official Request for Proposal and additional documents at www.oswegoil.org/business-and-development/bids-and-rfps.aspx. Submit up to three designs, which can be produced digitally or manually, according to the instructions in the Request for Proposal, by 3 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 17.
Contact Jenette Sturges, Community Engagement Coordinator, at 630-551-2392 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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