This competition is now closed.
Ottawa is built on un-ceded Anishinabe Algonquin territory. The peoples of the Anishinabe Algonquin Nation have lived on this territory for millennia. Their culture and presence have nurtured and continue to nurture this land. The City of Ottawa honours the peoples and land of the Anishinabe Algonquin Nation. The City of Ottawa honours all First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples and their valuable past and present contributions to this land.
About Direct Purchase
The City of Ottawa Public Art Program invites professional artists, and their representatives, to offer existing artworks for purchase. Applications are reviewed by a peer assessment committee and artworks recommended for purchase will become part of the City of Ottawa Art Collection. Artworks from this diverse collection are presented in over 170 public sites across Ottawa. Direct Purchase is a competitive program for participants to offer artwork for purchase to the City of Ottawa.
Before submitting your application, please review the Eligibility section below.
- To support eligible emerging, mid-career and established professional visual artists
- To purchase existing artworks to be added into the City of Ottawa Art Collection
- To support activities that address the priorities identified in the Renewed Action Plan for Arts, Heritage and Culture in Ottawa (2013 - 2018) [1.62 MB], including prioritizing applications from individuals with lived experience and identity as a member of Indigenous, Black and other racialized communities, persons with disabilities, women and other equity-deserving groups and artists not currently in the City of Ottawa Art Collection.
Who is eligible?
- Professional artists, or
- Representatives of professional artists, such as a gallery or an estate who is applying on behalf of professional artist(s).
Professional artists must have completed specialized training in their artistic field or be recognized by their peers as a professional artist.
Participants must either be the author of the artwork or must represent the author of the artwork.
Artists must live, or have lived, within a 150 km radius of Ottawa or the artwork must have a local connection (please indicate this in the Artist Statement or Artistic Résumé).
Artists must be committed to their artistic practice.
Artists must have created a body of work outside of basic training.
Artists who identify as Anishinabe Algonquin.
The City of Ottawa supports cultural activity that is inclusive of Ottawa's equity-deserving communities, including people from diverse ancestries, abilities, ages, countries of origin, cultures, genders, incomes, languages, races and sexual identities. The City of Ottawa recognizes the Anishinabe Algonquin Nation as Ottawa’s Indigenous Host Nation. The City of Ottawa is committed to supporting cultural activities that respond to the Calls to Action put forward in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report. Applications from members of the Anishinabe Algonquin Host Nation, First Nations, Inuit and Métis artists and curators are welcome and encouraged. The City of Ottawa recognizes both official languages as having the same rights, status and privileges.
Who is not eligible?
- Students who have not yet completed arts training.
- Individuals who are not authors nor representatives of professional artists.
- Artists who do not live, nor have not lived, within a 150 km radius of Ottawa.
- City of Ottawa employees or elected representatives in compliance with the City of Ottawa Employee Code of Conduct and all applicable laws and regulations.
- Applicants, not including galleries, may only submit one application at a time within this opportunity.
- Meeting all eligibility requirements does not guarantee purchase of artwork.
Applications are assessed by a Peer Assessment Committee according to:
- Artistic merit
- Regional importance
- Conservation and maintenance requirements
Who is on the Peer Assessment Committee?
- The composition of the committee aims to balance representation of artistic specialization, practice, style, and philosophy, as well as fair representation of official languages, gender, geographic areas, and culture-specific communities.
- Peer assessment committee members are chosen based on their knowledge and experience, fair and objective opinions, ability to articulate ideas, and ability to work in a team environment.
- Members of the Peer Assessment Committee change for every opportunity.
- Members of the Peer Assessment Committee are selected after the competition closes and must declare conflicts of interest prior to participation.
Deadline and notification
The Public Art Program will send you a confirmation email when your application has been received and processed. If you do not receive an email from the Public Art Program within two weeks after your submission, please contact us for confirmation.
All participants will be notified by email of the results of the first stage of the 2023 Direct Purchase by August 2023.
Results are final. Due to the volume of applications received, artistic feedback will not be provided.
If your application is not successful, you are encouraged to try again!
The peer assessment committee is comprised of new members for each competition. If your artwork was not recommended for purchase understand that your submission may have been supported but the Direct Purchase’s limited budget cannot fund all applicants, regardless of their merit.
Copyright and moral rights
The artist shall retain the copyright of the artworks. Moral rights also remain with the artist. The City of Ottawa will seek copyright permission to reproduce images of the artwork for non-commercial purposes.
Confidentiality of information
Personal information in your application is collected under the authority of the City Council approved Public Art Policy. Personal information will only be used for evaluating your application and administering the City of Ottawa Public Art Program. City of Ottawa employees and peer assessment committee members are required to treat both the content of applications and the deliberations of the committee as confidential. Committee members turn in their copies of materials for shredding and delete their computer files at the end of the peer assessment meeting.
For general information about the City of Ottawa Public Art Program or technical issues contact email@example.com.
Accessible formats and communication supports are available upon request. If you are unable to view documents or require alternative file formats, please complete an Accessible Documents Request Form.
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