Call to Artists: Public Art in Commercial Alley - Submission Guidelines

Call to Artists: Public Art in Commercial Alley - Submission Guidelines
Between lower Yates Street and Bastion Square
Wednesday, March 30, 2016, 12:00 pm

Public Art in Commercial Alley 

Partnership between the City of Victoria and the Open Space Arts Society.


Submission Deadline: Wednesday, March 30, 2016, 5pm PST


Submission Guidelines 

Description of project:

Open Space invites artist’s proposals for works and projects to be presented in Commercial Alley, located in downtown Victoria. The City of Victoria and Open Space are continuing a partnership to present works by artists living in the Capital Regional District that respond to the unique conditions and context of the alleyway.


Commercial Alley is part of a network of alleyways that cross the downtown core. The City of Victoria and Open Space invite local artists to re-imagine the Alley as a site for artistic and creative expression.


The artist selected to present work in Commercial Alley will be contracted from April 2016 to August 2017. The artist(s) chosen will be paid fees and a stipend for shipping artwork to and from the location. Plywood panels, weatherproofing, installation and strike of the work will be provided by the City of Victoria. To date, all of the installations have been the work of an individual artist. Collectives and groups are welcome to submit a proposal and complete the project as a collaborative effort. The outlined fees and stipend will be divided among the number of artists participating.


The work will be presented as a series of four 1.2 metres x 2.4 metres (4 feet x 8 feet) plywood panels installed on the west wall of the Victoria Youth Empowerment Society building. The artist chosen for the project can cut, and reshape the panels within structural limitations.



Commercial Alley


Commercial Alley runs between lower Yates Street and Bastion Square. It is a corridor of constant activity. The west-facing brick wall of the Victoria Youth Empowerment Society is the site developed to present public art. Commercial Alley is a working space, providing vehicle access to businesses and organizations including the Victoria Youth Empowerment Society and the Renaissance Book Store. It provides a walkway between The Reef Caribbean Restaurant and Lucky Bar and Bastion Square.







Open Space is looking for proposals that take into consideration the context of Commercial Alley as a downtown throughway, a public site within the core of the city, and a space of interaction for diverse youth. The Open Space Program Committee and representatives from the City of Victoria Art in Public Places Committee and the Victoria Youth Empowerment Society will review proposals that meet the submission guidelines. The panel will choose one proposal. Fee: $1,750; Shipping stipend: $250.


Proposals should include the following:


  1. A statement of interest (250 words), expressing your ideas about public art in the City of Victoria;
  2. A description of the work (250 words) that you propose to install in Commercial Alley;
  3. A brief biographical statement (100 words);
  4. 10 images of your past and current work (each image as a 1mb .jpeg file, 1024x768ppi in size) labeled with # + Initials + Date of work + Title of work.

The artist agrees to the following stipulations outlined by the Victoria Youth Empowerment Society, who provide the wall space for the outdoor art space:


1. The artwork will be contained within the maximum panel size of four panels at 1.2 metres x 2.4 metres (4 feet x 8 feet) at designated locations on the Victoria Youth Empowerment Society wall in Commercial Alley.


2. Profanity, hateful language and any other words and/or images that are likely to be perceived by the general public as offensive will not be permitted.


3. Any language or images that convey or portray drug and/or alcohol use will not be permitted.


Due to the proximity of the wall to the Youth Empowerment Society we encourage artists to consider the sensitivities around at risk youth.


4. Explicit or encrypted signatures (i.e. graffiti) will not be permitted.


5. Artists’ signatures can be up to 1.5 per cent of panel area (e.g. 70 square inches on a 4’ x 8’ panel).


Proposals should be sent by email to: with ATTN: COMMERCIAL ALLEY PUBLIC ART 
as the subject line.

For further details email

Deadline for Proposals: March 30, 2016, at 5 p.m. Pacific Time