Sunday, February 25, 2024

Call for Artists: Public Art Residency at Hartford Park

Note: This page can be translated into Spanish, Portuguese and Khmer using the button to your bottom left. The application portal on is in English only. Please call the Department of Art, Culture + Tourism for assistance with the application should you need support.


The City of Providence invites professional muralists to work with the Providence Housing Authority and Hartford Park residents to co-design and install a new original mural at Hartford Park.

 Awarded artists will receive a six- month residency at the Providence Housing Authority Hartford Park housing complex where they will co-design and install a permanent mural on pre-selected building(s).

The residency will begin on April 1, 2020 and last for 6 months. The artist will be provided a $20,000 all-inclusive budget that includes an artist fee for engagement, co-design and installation as well as materials. This budget may be increased, pending approval of grant applications submitted by the Providence Housing Authority.

The application deadline is January 29, 2020.


Program Goals

ACT Public Art’s residency program places artists in City facilities and offices to engage directly with residents and staff. Through these residencies, artists develop projects that infuse artistic practices and artists’ creative problem solving into residents’ lives and the everyday operations of the City.

The goals of the Public Art Residency at Hartford Park are to:

  • Connect Hartford Park residents with the arts and with one and other
  • Improve the appearance of the building(s) and residents’ experience of the building(s) with a large-scale exterior mural on Whelan Road by the soon-to-be-installed “Tot Lot”
  • Provide residents with a hands-on artmaking experience and/or experience with artistic processes.
  • Capture the essence of the theme “Past and Presence of Hartford Park”

Location and Siting

The artist-in-residence will be provided with a small desk and storage space on site at Hartford Park in a space at Hartford Park Tower (335 Hartford Ave.).

The majority of the engagement activities will occur indoors and outdoors at Hartford Park. Sites may include community rooms, communal spaces at the elder housing high rise, the Thomas J. Anton Community Center (50 Laurel Hill Ave.), playgrounds, parking lots and courtyards.

The majority of Hartford Park residents are Hispanic or Latinx and the artist can expect to lead communications / utilize interpretation for engagement activities in both English and in Spanish. Providence Housing Authority may be able to provide interpretation at large group events and activities, but the artist will be responsible for ensuring Spanish speakers are available for smaller-scale engagement.

The artist’s engagement activities will help determine the content for the permanent work. After careful consideration between the artist, Hartford Park residents, and the Providence Housing Authority, the permanent mural will be installed on two buildings at Hartford Park on Whelan Road (Buildings 11 and 13).

Proposed Site

11 Whelan Road, Hartford Park Housing Complex

Two walls which connect over a green space that includes a basketball court and will soon have more park and playground amenities. These buildings face the elder housing high rise and can serve to connect young families with elders.



  • Applicant must be 21 years or older and hold a current Rhode Island home or studio address to be eligible to apply. Providence residents and/or artists and cultural workers with previous lived experience in Providence public housing will be preferred.
  • This call is open to muralists only. Artists that can demonstrate an interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary arts practice, traditional and indigenous art forms or intercultural modalities as a means of an engagement strategy will be preferred.
  • This call is open to individual artists. This call is administered through Call for Entry and artists must set up a profile in the online system in order to complete the application successfully.
  • Applicant must have demonstrated experience with a portfolio consisting of at least three successful outdoor murals, gallery exhibitions, public performances, or publications.
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate their experience as an artist with social practice with a portfolio consisting of at least one successful art-based program including but not limited to instruction, fabrication of public art and / or the production of a performance.
  • Preference will be given to artists who demonstrate cultural competency and previous experience working in intercultural modalities that foster innovation, diversity, and relevance with new audiences.
  • Spanish speakers preferred.

Art Selection Method

Artists will be selected through a competitive, two-tiered process. Qualified artists may submit their Artist Statement, Resume/CV, a cover letter and three to five examples of relevant projects by January 29, 2020.   Applicants must apply online through Call for Entry here:

The Art Selection Panel will review complete applications and score the submitted qualifications, limiting the selection pool to no more than five artists.

The five shortlisted artists will then be invited to an in-person interview with the art selection panel.  Prior to the interview, Artists will be asked to develop a brief presentation detailing how they will engage with Hartford Park residents, Providence Housing Authority staff, the site and the grounds.

The Art Selection Panel will recommend an awarded artist to the Art in City Life Commission for approval at the March 11, 2020 regular meeting. The Department of Art, Culture + Tourism will announce the commissioned artist in residence no later than April 1, 2020.

Art Selection Panel

The Art Selection Panel will be comprised of seven members including:

  • Art in City Life Commissioner
  • Executive Director of Providence Housing Authority
  • A representative from Providence Housing Office of Strategy and Development
  • Representative from the Providence Housing Authority Property Management team.
  • Hartford Park Resident Association representative
  • Local Artist
  • Providence Housing Authority youth representative

Selection Criteria

Finalists will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • Relationship of the artist’s method of engagement to the context of the Program Goals stated above.
  • Artistic excellence and innovation, as evidenced by previous work.
  • Ability to manage budgets and complete projects on time, as evidenced by previous work.
  • Interest and excitement in working with Hartford Park residents to design and install the mural.


If selected for an interview, applicants should be prepared to speak about their excitement in working with public housing residents, their ability to engage bilingual or multilingual speakers (English and Spanish) as well as intergenerational communities, and clearly articulate their proposed engagement strategies.

Artist Scope of Work

Upon award notification and acceptance, the artist shall sign a contract with the City for the activities outlined below:

  • Participate in regularly scheduled check-ins with staff from the Providence Housing Authority, Department of Art Culture + Tourism, and other relevant stakeholders.
  • Immerse themselves with the Hartford Park community and develop and lead strategies and activities to facilitate the selection of the mural site and the mural co-design process. These activities may include workshops, artist talks, art lessons, live art-making, events or surveys. The co-design process must prioritize Hartford Park residents, the majority of whom are Spanish-speaking Latinx. This muralist must be fluent in Spanish or be able to demonstrate how they will utilize their project budget to ensure fluent Spanish speakers are present at all times.
  • Submit for approval a project proposal and budget that includes engagement strategies and a description of the proposed approach for developing the content/imagery of the mural.
  • Engage Hartford Park residents in the co-design of a permanent mural on selected building(s).
  • Install and execute the mural, including any necessary wall preparation and equipment.
  • Participate in an unveiling and dedication ceremony with the community.


At the close of the residency (October 1, 2020) the artist is required to gift the permanent mural to the City.  This permanent work should have been co-designed and potentially co-installed with the constituents noted above. The mural shall become part of the ACT Public Art Collection, and the City will reserve the right to maintain, restore, and de-commission the work within the stipulations of the contract.

To Submit

To apply, go online to the CaFÉ homepage at and create a free artist account. CaFÉ is free to use and there is no entry fee for this call.  Under “Find Calls” search for “Residency at Hartford Park” or follow to go directly to the call. Follow the instructions for submission, upload the required images and files, and submit. For technical questions about CaFÉ, please click on “Help” on the CaFÉ website.

ACT will be offering a free Artist Info Session (date tbd) to assist interested artists in signing up for CaFÉ and to answer any questions about this Call. If you are interested in attending the session, please email Africia Ben at and we will notify you of the time and location of the session as soon as it is confirmed.

In the CaFÉ system, you will be required to answer the following questions:

  1. Please provide a brief Artist Statement to introduce the Art Selection Panel to who you are as an artist and some of the themes and ideas you explore in your artwork. Please do not insert a resume or list of accomplishments here. We are interested in your media, discipline, and community engagement practices. (300 words maximum)
  2. Submit a cover letter that tells us how you might engage the residents of Hartford Park, your excitement and interest for the opportunity, and shares your housing journey.  (no more than 2 pages)
  3. You will also be required to attach the following files and information in your online submission:
  • a resume of no more than 3 pages that includes the name and contact information for three references
  • up to 10 images of past work (may include a mix of JPEGs, websites, audio clips, and/or videos (60 second clips only).
  • the following for each work sample submitted: artist’s name, artwork title, brief description of artwork (100 words or less), medium, completion date, dimensions, total budget/cost (please use the Price/Value field in CaFE). In the description field, please include commissioning entity, if applicable, and state your role in the creation of the artwork if other artists or design professionals were involved in its creation.

Project Schedule

Call to artists opens December 16, 2019
Application Deadline  January 29 2020
Finalists interviews February 28 2020
Art in City Life Commission approval March 11 2020
Residency period begins April 1 2020
Residency period closes October 1 2020

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