Fresh Arts is a Houston-based 501(c)3 organization that champions local artists and creative entreprenuers to succeed in the business of art.

REQUEST FOR QUALIFICATIONS

"Art is in the Making" Outdoor Mural Commission for Arts District Houston

Deadline: Sunday, November 8, 2020, 11:59 p.m. (CST) 

Proposal Stipend: $400, limited to three selected finalists.

Artist Commission: $10,000 (inclusive of all materials).

Project Location: Winter Street Studios, 2101 Winter Street, Houston, TX 77007

1. Summary

Fresh Arts and Arts District Houston seek a local artist or artist team interested in creating a large-scale outdoor mural. The commissioned mural will have high visibility, be prominently featured on the northeast corner of Winter Street Studios, and use local history to evoke a creative, uplifting feeling that 1) encourages community and 2) celebrates the spirit of the First Ward neighborhood.

Three artists will be invited through the Request for Qualifications process to submit design specific proposals and receive a $400 proposal stipend. One artist will be chosen based on their proposal. Payment to the commissioned artist is $10,000.

Proposed murals should reflect the history of the First Ward, including the impact of the many rail lines, and feature Arts District Houston’s motto, “Art is in the Making.” Artists selected to submit designs will have access to historical reference materials and research guidance from Arts District Houston.

Artist applicants must first complete a profile in the Fresh Arts Artist Registry for Houston-area creatives. Go to https://freshartsregistry.org/ to create a free profile if you don't already have one.

2. Budget

The total fee for the commissioned mural is $10,000*. Artists invited to submit proposals will be paid a $400 stipend.

*Project budget will be inclusive of all costs associated with the artworks, including, but not limited to, artist design fee, materials, installation labor, rentals, travel to and from the site, shipping, per diem expenses, project documentation, commercial liability insurance, and contingency to cover unexpected expenses.

3. Scope of Work

The artwork shall be safe, durable and of appropriate imagery for view by the public realm. The mural will be created onsite at Winter Street Studios (2101 Winter Street, Houston, TX 77007) in consultation with the building owner (Deal Co.) and Fresh Arts. Artist will complete the work with a satin clear coat. The selected artist will be expected to receive feedback from the Client on their design and integrate that feedback where necessary. 

Installation of mural should begin the week of January 4, 2021. Artist must work onsite on Saturday, January 9, 2021 during the hours of Noon to 5pm in conjunction with 2nd Saturday at Sawyer Yards. Mural should be completed no later than Friday, February 12, 2021. Artist is expected to attend a mural unveiling on Saturday, February 13, 2021, 2-5pm.

Additionally, the artist is expected to provide 3-5 pieces of two-dimensional artwork to be temporarily exhibited inside the Arts District Welcome Center, studio C1 at Winter Street Studios, for a period of two months (January 7-February 26, 2021). Additional information regarding the Welcome Center exhibition will be provided upon final artist selection.

4. Evaluation Criteria

  • Artistic quality: Proposal images demonstrate that the final work will be of the highest      artistic caliber.
  • Responsiveness: Letter of intent, proposal images and final work successfully address the overall goals of the project as well as the core values of the Client—including      incorporating references to the area’s history or culture—engaging and inspiring the community.
  • Project management ability: Applicant(s) demonstrate that the Artist has the necessary capability to accomplish the project, and to create and deliver the work on schedule.
  • Durability: Use durable materials that require minimum maintenance. The final work will be resistant to vandalism.

5. Eligibility: This opportunity is open to Houston-based artists and artist teams living within 50 miles of Houston.

6. Proposal Requirements

  1. Artist or artist team resume: No more than 3 pages
  2. Artwork Images: Up to ten (10) images of prior works that demonstrate the ability to successfully complete the project
  3. Image List: include Artist name(s), title, date completed (as applicable), dimensions, and      material/medium
  4. Artist Statement: 500 words maximum
  5. Create an Artist Profile on the Fresh Arts Artist Registry at https://freshartsregistry.org/

All documents should be in (at least) 12-point font, single-spaced, with a minimum ½” margin.

If selected, Artist(s) will be required to sign an agreement for the project with Fresh Arts, carry commercial liability insurance, and follow project guidelines. A sample agreement is available by request.

7. Submission

To submit, complete this Submittable form.

8. Timeline

  • Sunday, November 8, 2020, 11:59PM: RFQ due via Submittable
  • Tuesday, November 17 by 5pm:  All artists notified of status. Three finalists invited to submit proposals
  • Sunday, November 29, 2020, 11:59PM: Finalist proposals due
  • Wednesday, December 2, 2020: Artist notification

Timeline if selected:

  • By Tuesday, December 8, 2020: Contracting with Artists is complete; Artist and Client meet via video conference to review artwork and discuss feedback
  • By Friday, December 18, 2020: Revised design due; Artist statement due (no more than 300 words)
  • January 4 – February 12, 2020: Onsite creation of the mural
  • January 4-6: Artist drops off artwork for Welcome Center
  • Saturday, January 9, Noon-5pm: Artist working onsite for 2nd Saturday
  • Saturday, February 13, 2020, 2-5pm: Mural Unveiling


PLEASE NOTE: This schedule is subject to change.

Any questions pertaining to this RFQ should be submitted in writing—via email—no later than 5 p.m. (CST), Thursday, November 5, 2020 to angela@fresharts.org. Required subject line: “ADHou Mural RFQ 2020.”


Before you apply, please read the Fiscal Sponsorship FAQs and schedule a meeting with the Fiscal Sponsorship Coordinator before the 15th of the month by emailing fiscalsponsorship@fresharts.org. Applications have a rolling deadline on the 1st of every month. Please check your eligibility via the questions below. Also, note that to submit this form, you must pay the $100.00 non-refundable application fee. 

Currently, fiscal sponsorship applications are reviewed once every month by a special committee, whose recommendations are subject to approval by the Fresh Arts board of directors. Please allow adequate time for the approval process before beginning to raise funds for your project.

(If you already have a budget, mission statement, and project description prepared, the application should take roughly 30-45 minutes.) 

Click here to download a budget template for your application

Fresh Arts