ArtsNow Seeks Artists for Work in Park East (DEADLINE EXTENSION)

Posted by ArtsNow ; Posted on 
ArtsNow Seeks Artists for Work in Park East (DEADLINE EXTENSION)



Call for Artists
Park East Artist-In-Residence: Phase I
*NEW Submission Deadline:
Due at Midnight on Monday, August 13, 2018

Download the full RFP here!

In-person Q&A will take place on Monday, July 30th at 4:00pm.
Stay tuned for details!

Organization Summary – ArtsNow

ArtsNow strengthens Summit County by advancing its arts & culture assets and building connections between arts & culture and the broader community. ArtsNow:

  • Provides residents of Summit County access to real-time information about the diverse arts & culture offerings available in Summit County at
  • Aggregates and analyzes data about arts & culture to drive sector improvement.
  • Advocates for arts & culture across the public, private and nonprofit sectors.
  • Convenes and connects artists to strengthen the sector’s impact and relevance.
  • Builds and strengthens funding for arts & culture.

Project Overview

Art and nature are for everyone. ArtsNow seeks to leverage the arts to awaken a sense of community possibilities in Park East and energize neighbors toward creating resolutions for common problems, either as individuals or as a collective.

Through an artist-in-residence format, this project in Park East seeks to support and engage residents by informing and empowering local artists to create engaging, authentic, creative work in and with the neighborhood.

Project Scope
What are we changing?

The project will center around transforming the tennis courts through engagement with Park East neighbors and residents to a year-round space. The RFP will be designed to accomplish this goal, while also challenging the artists to design a project process.

This work will be broken into two phases:

Phase One

Artist will respond to the question: How would you engage the Park East community in conversations and activities that would lead to neighborhood driven creative activation of the tennis court area in all seasons?

This work will build trust, expand relationships, and explore needs and opportunities the neighbors would like to address. This work should compliment and respect previous work established by Akron Civic Commons (ACC) and their current Artist-In-Residence and culminate with some ideas that will frame the RFP for Phase Two.

This work will begin in September 2018 and conclude by March 1, 2019.

Phase Two

A second RFP will be released to continue community engagement and explore some of the already identified concepts for a more permanent transformation of the tennis courts. The culmination of this phase will result in a collaboratively designed transformation with Park East neighbors of the tennis court area.

This work will extend from February 2019 through July of 2019.

Park East Community Overview

The neighborhood sits along the canal and the Ohio and Erie Canal and the Towpath runs through the center between Downtown Akron and Summit Lake. Residents include long-time homeowners and renters in partially and fully-subsidized units. The estimated population of Park East is 1476 – 72% Black/African American, 20% White, 8% Other.  44% Male, 56% Female. 66% of the population is at or below poverty with a median household income of $10,380. 39% of the population is in the labor force, 61% is not. 62% of the population is non-family households living alone.  

Residency Requirements

Any artist, established or emerging, working in any medium is encouraged to apply. Individuals, couples, or collaboratives may apply, but please note that we cannot offer additional budgetary resources to individual members. Artists do not need to have experience in mural making or social practice, nor a history of practice involving socially engaged art, to be considered. Part of the process will be working with experts in the field to ensure authentic community engagement. Preference will be given to artists living in Summit County, Ohio.

Terms of Residency

Artist(s) will receive:

  • $14,000
  • Professional development opportunities through Mural Arts Philadelphia and ArtsNow
  • Background and support from Akron Civic Commons and the ACC Artist-in-Residence who will also be active in the Park East neighborhood and with whom collaboration and communication is key
  • Support from a Project Manager who will assist in ensuring deadlines and objectives are met
  • Travel coverage to and from Philadelphia for an October 5th and 6th symposium with Mural Arts Philadelphia
  • Up to $5,500 for program/project supplies to be leveraged in collaboration with MAP, PM, and ArtsNow

Artist Expectations:

The artist(s) will be expected to commit fully in spirit and practice to the intent and framework of the residency. There is no guarantee that this process will not involve challenges, conflicts, or failures and it is the responsibility of the artist to work in good faith with all parties to attempt to fulfill the commitments to the community and partners in Park East.  It is expected the artist will work in a way that is respectful to partners and the community as a whole.

The artist will need to spend the amount of time necessary to build the relationships and authentically complete the scope of work.

Selection Process

A jury of community members, partner organizations, and artists will make-up the selection committee.  Submissions will be received August 13, 2018, and decisions will be made by late-August. (Note: The selection committee may choose to require final interviews.)


The completed application must be received by midnight on August 13, 2018 in order to be considered. The completed application should be submitted to ArtsNow at Questions should be directed to

The completed application must include:

Cover Letter

1.     Name(s)

2.     Email Address

3.     Mailing Address

4.     Telephone Number

5.     Website (If applicable)

Application Narrative

The narrative cannot be longer than 500 words and must include an artist statement which details your experience, if any, with community-based art. Your narrative should also address the question, “What excites you most about this opportunity?”

Work Samples

You may submit a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 5 images, video, or audio files.  Images must be formatted as JPEGS and less than 1MB each in size.

All files should be titled with lastname, firstname, worksample, and a number indicating the viewing order.

Work Sample Description List

Maximum of two pages including education, exhibition or project history, and any other relevant professional artist experience.


Maximum of three pages including education, exhibition or project history, and any other relevant artistic experience.

Important Dates

August 13, 2018
Submission Deadline (Midnight)

Week of  August 20th
Artists Notified

September/October 2018 – February  2019
Work Phase I

October 5-6
MAP Symposium in Philadelphia


In addition to ArtsNow, partners include:

Akron Civic Commons (
Ohio and Erie Canalway Coalition (
Park East Steering Committee
Mural Arts Philadelphia (



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