14 May 2019

Public Art RFP Mural Honoring HIV Long Term Survivors

Openhouse San FranciscoSan Francisco, California, United States

NOTE: This opp listing has expired and may no longer be relevant!

Opportunity Description

U.S. Multi-State Deadline: May 22, 2019 – San Francisco Openhouse is commissioning a site-specific mural to transform the central stairway in their new Community Center, the heart of a residential complex housing LGBTQ elders. Click here for a description of the site.

Artists are invited to submit qualifications and ideas for the design and implementation of a mural project to transform the central stairway of their new Community Center into a tribute to the hope and resilience of HIV Long-Term Survivors.

Artists may apply as individuals or in teams of two. Professional artists with experience in the field of public art and murals are encouraged to apply. All Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer applicants, regardless of race, sex, religion, nationality, origin or disability, will be considered. Straight allies with HIV, or whose lives have been significantly impacted by HIV, will also be considered. All applicants must be 18 years old or older and reside in Washington, Oregon or California.

$25,000 total = $5,000 for materials + $20,000 for the artists portion of the project is all-inclusive. Includes artist’s design fee, any additional costs of materials and fabrication of the work (beyond materials budget), artist travel and meals, hiring helpers, equipment for installation, preparing specifications and providing any additional materials necessary for installation of the work. Liability insurance is required but may be purchased after first award from Openhouse. Artist agrees that under no circumstances shall any further payment obligation of Openhouse accrue with respect to the Services contemplated herein over and above the amount of the Commission. Artist must be willing to meet all contractual obligations and adhere to a strict timeline. The Artist will coordinate all site preparation, installation plans, and timetables with the designated Openhouse staff. The artist should enjoy interacting with Openhouse clients and visitors while creating the mural.

The distinguished Review Panel will choose 3-5 finalists, who will each receive a $500 honorarium to provide detailed design concepts that include budgets, drawings and descriptions of their proposed projects. Digital prints of the final proposals may be displayed in an exhibition at Openhouse.

Members of the Review Panel bring a combination of experience and specific expertise to evaluating applications and identifying outstanding finalists. Panel includes Alicia McCarthy and Victor Mario Zaballa, award-winning public artists; Pauline Shaver, former Executive Director of Artists Legacy Foundation, curator and principal of Shaver Associates; and DK Haas, Communications and Development Officer at UCSF Alliance Health Project, artist and member of the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee, bringing together diverse perspectives of residents and members of the Openhouse community, will jury the finalists’ work and select the winning proposal based on aesthetic appeal and relevance. The artist with the winning proposal will begin the mural as soon as possible, to be completed by September 15, 2019, in time to be celebrated at a commemoration ceremony on September 18, 2019, National HIV & Aging Day.

Submissions will be evaluated based on the following:

  • The mural should be a tribute to and celebration of HIV Long Term Survivors, of aging well with HIV. The mural should be inspiring and thought-provoking.
  • The Living Wall and Mural will be the physical and emotional centerpiece of the new gathering place for the LGBTQ senior community, bringing more HIV long-term survivors out of isolation and into a meaningful relationship with other community members. The artistic tribute also will serve as a symbol for aging well with HIV.
  • Because WPA-era murals were unearthed and restored in the process of remodeling an adjacent vintage building that had been a schoolhouse, mural proposals could use these as a reference point or inspiration. (This is in no way required.)
  • Openhouse is open to a variety of styles and approaches. The proposed mural could be meditative, bold, quiet, joyous, colorful, muted, abstract, figurative, contain text or have a gentle sense of humor, and so on.
  • Quality and innovation; an aesthetic sensibility and approach; creative relationship to the theme; appropriateness for the site; technical ability; experience and professionalism are essential.
  • Artist’s materials should indicate that the working relationship will be pleasant, and the completed project will successfully meet likely challenges, including completing all documentation and managing the given project budget.
  • Artists experienced with community-based, large-scale public art projects, who have successfully managed and completed at least one similar commission project are sought, or those who have demonstrated the ability to quickly acquire the skills needed to be successful. Regardless of specific experience, the artist or team must make a case for having the ability to carry out the project.

If two artists are applying together: Indicate who is the lead artist in your statement. Submit materials as required in the application, including a resume or bio and two images from the second member of the team.

Application form, current resume, bio, contact information for two professional references, statement describing artistic process, concept for mural, 8 jpegs of work produced in the past three years, labeled with title, medium, dimensions and date.


  • May 22, 2019 at 11:59pm Pacific Time – Deadline for proposals
  • June 5, 2019 – Finalists announced
  • July 15, 2019 – Finalists’ deadline for detailed drawings and descriptions
  • July 22, 2019 – Winner announced
  • September 15, 2019 – Mural Completed
  • September 18, 2019 – Opening celebration on National HIV & Aging Awareness Day
  • Dates subject to change.

Questions? Email Julie Blankenship, director of artist selection process: openhousemural@gmail.com.

Founded in San Francisco in 1998, Openhouse enables San Francisco Bay Area lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) seniors to overcome the unique challenges they face as they age by providing housing, direct services, and community programs.  Openhouse works to reduce isolation and empower LGBT seniors to improve their health, well-being and economic security.

Bob Ross LGBT Senior Center
65 Laguna St
San Francisco, CA 94102

Opp Categories: + Open to Multi-Media. Opp Types: Public Art RFP. Opp Tags: $0 Entry/Application Fee and Open to U.S. Multi-State. Income: *No Application Fee and Purchase.

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