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Murals DC Project 2014 - Call to Artists

Call for Graffiti & Aerosol Mural Artists!!

Request for Qualifications

Deadline: Wednesday, May 7, 2013 at 5:00pm Budget: $3,000 - $13,500 per mural

The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) in collaboration with the DC Department of Public Works (DPW) seeks graffiti artists and artist teams to design, create and install aerosol murals that inspire the various communities in which they will be placed. Selected artists will be required to work with the young apprentices (ages 14-23) by introducing and refining each student’s artistic skill in the discipline of graffiti style sketch work and aerosol mural painting.


MuralsDC was created to replace illegal graffiti with artistic works, to revitalize sites within communities in the District of Columbia, and to teach young people the art of aerosol painting. This initiative aims to positively engage the District’s youth by teaching proper professional art techniques, providing supplies, and a legal means to practice and perform their artistic skill in a way that promotes respect for public and private property and community awareness.

The three platforms on which the MuralsDC project is based are:

  • Illegal Graffiti Abatement
  • Youth Outreach
  • Community Revitalization

There are currently 45 MuralsDC projects across the District. Each mural tells a unique story of DC’s diverse neighborhoods while deterring further illegal graffiti. To view past murals visit


Words Beats and Life is a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that transforms individual lives and whole communities through the training in and presentation of the core elements of hip-hop culture by giving emerging artists access to Master Level artists who have a connection to the community.

Final Artists will enter into an agreement with Lead Artist Consultant, Words Beats and Life for the design and installation of the Mural.


Site selections are based on areas of the District with high incidence of illegal graffiti as identified by the DPW, Mayor’s Office of Community Relations and Services (MOCRS) other agencies and site owners.


All Applicants are required to submit a complete application that includes an:

  1. Application Form (see attached)
  2. (10 Digital) Past Work Samples
  3. Annotated Image List (see attached)
  4. Artist Bio and or Artistic Resume
  5. 2 Professional References

Final Artist(s) will enter into an agreement with the Lead Artist Consultant to begin the community engagement and design and installation phases of the program.


This commission is open to Graffiti and Aerosol Mural Art Artists and Artist Teams.

All Artists must:

  • Be 18 years of age or older.
  • Have Graffiti and or Aerosol Mural Art experience.
  • Be a practicing professional.
  • Be in good standing with the MuralsDC program.
  • Be record free.

*Preference will be given to District of Columbia Artists.


Artist selection will be based on artistic merit, community impact and managerial capability using the following evaluation criteria of:

  • Quality, strength and reflection of graffiti or Hip Hop aesthetic as demonstrated in the submitted work samples.
  • Experience working with community in some capacity.
  • Adaptability to the collaborative process of design.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the unique consideration of exterior murals.
  • Ability to create a unique and engaging artwork appropriate in concept, materials and scale.
  • Availability to complete work before or by September 2014.


The selection process will have two stages. During the first round, DCCAH will convene a MuralsDC Artist Selection Panel, representing diverse interests and expertise, to review the qualifications of artists who respond to this call.

The MuralsDC Artist Selection Panel will review submitted past work samples and artistic bio’s/resumes to evaluate artist qualifications. The MuralsDC Artist Selection Panel will recommend 12-15 Semi-Finalists to be placed on to the 2014 MuralsDC Roster.

For the second round, Site Owners will review the work samples of all semi-finalists and will choose the artist to design and install the Mural at their site. Upon approval, a scope of services and budget will be developed based on the artist’s or artist team’s approach to the project.

Final  Artist(s)  will  enter  into  an  agreement  with  the  Lead  Artist  Consultant  to  begin  the community engagement and design phases of the program.


12-15  15 selected participants will be placed on a roster based upon selection criteria and availability of sites. Placement on the roster does not guarantee participation in the program.

Selected Final Artists will enter into an agreement with Lead Artist Consultant for the design and installation of the Mural.


Depending on site dimensions, the total budget for each mural will range from $3,000 to $13,500.

  • The mural budget must include all artist fees and costs associated with design, fabrication, travel, transportation to the site, insurance, permits, installation, graffiti protective coating, working with young people and documentation of the artwork.
  • The overall project budget includes the artist’s design fees, compensation and travel expenses, all materials and fabrication costs, shipping and transportation of materials to the site, preparation of mural site, installation of the artwork, application of protective coating, and any applicable taxes and/or insurance.
  • Payments will be made directly to Final Artists.  Principals and fiscal agents of any kind are prohibited.

Funds under this program may not be used to fund colleges, universities, or other government agencies.


  • Application Form (see attached)
  • 10 digital images of at least five different previous works submitted on a CD (jpg or tiff files only).
  • Artist Teams: all participating design members should submit examples of their past work; group submission should not exceed 20 digital images.
  • Annotated Image List (see attached)
  • A printed sheet of information with artist’s name, contact information, artwork titles, mediums, date of artworks, sizes and the corresponding image numbers in order as seen on CD.
  • Artist Bio or Resume (2 page maximum, per person) of all participating members.
  • 2 Professional References
  • Provide names, addresses and phone numbers to who have great knowledge of your work




May 7, 2014

Application Deadline


Mid May 2014

Application Review

Roster /Semi-Finalist Selections Notifications Issued

Late May 2014

Final Artist Selections Notifications Issued

Late May 2014

Site Assignments

Early- Mid June 2014

Mural Concept Designs Begin

Mid- Late June 2014

Final Approval of Mural Designs

July 2014

Mural Installations Begin

Early Fall 2014

Program Dedication / Culminating Event



Wednesday, May 7, 2014

All materials must be received no later than 5:00 PM.

This is not a postmark deadline. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered.


Keona Pearson, Public Art Program Coordinator DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities Attn: MuralsDC

200 I Street S.E. Suite #1400

Washington, DC 20003


Call 202-724-5613 or email