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O-Train Public Art Program

About the O-Train Public Art Program

The O-Train Public Art Program offers a platform for artists’ teams to create public art that will position Ottawa as a leading city for innovative and engaging contemporary art in light rail projects. This Program will inspire and create dialogue about the role of art in our city, and enhance the transit experience across Ottawa.

The O-Train Public Art Program is made possible due to the City of Ottawa’s Public Art Policy which designates 1% of capital project budgets for public art.

Stage 1: Confederation Line

In January 2010, Ottawa City Council approved the functional design for the Confederation Line Light Rail Transit (LRT) in Ottawa, Ontario. The O-Train Stage 1 Public Art Program launched in July 2012 along with a call for Algonquin artists in November 2012. Open competitions resulted in twelve artists/artist teams to work as members of the project design team to create integrated artworks at each station.

The O-Train Stage 1 Public Art Program released another call to artists for non-integrated artwork in June 2014 and resulted in the commission of seven permanent, stand-alone artworks at six themed stations. The six themed stations are located in Ottawa’s downtown core (Bayview, Pimisi, Lyon, Rideau, Parliament and uOttawa). There are two distinct commissions for uOttawa station, and the Algonquin-themed Pimisi Station remained exclusive for artwork designed by Algonquin artists along with requirements to collaborate closely with nearby Algonquin Anishinaabe communities.

Introducing the O-Train Stage 1 public art

multiple logos

Ride the train and explore artwork by 24 artists at 13 stations:

  1. Tunney’s Pasture: artwork by Derek Root
    two images together, example of artist's light work

     
  2. Bayview: artworks by Adrian Göllner and Pierre Poussin
    weathering steel
      
    blue sculpture

     
  3. Pimisi: artworks by Nadia Myre, Simon Brascoupé with Emily Brascoupé-Hoefler, Sherry-Ann Rodgers, Doreen Stevens, Sylvia Tennisco, featuring 101 hand painted paddles by Algonquin Anishinabe artisans
    three sculptures side by side


    3 artworks shown together: moose, paddles, birch bark biting

     
  4. Lyon: artworks by Geoff McFetridge and PLANT
    mural near escalator
      
    round steel structure with words cut out

     
  5. Parliament: artworks by Douglas Coupland and Jennifer Stead
    coloured triangles on the ceiling
      
    green rectangular sculpture in intertrack barrier
     
     
  6. Rideau: artworks by Geneviève Cadieux and Jim Verburg
    coloured glass wall
      
    silver metal lines embedded into black wall

     
  7. uOttawa: artworks by Derek Besant and Kenneth Emig
    framed portraits hung in a bike path corridor
      
    reflective sphere in clear cube

     
  8. Lees: artwork by Amy Thompson
    coloured glass wall
      
    sculptural birds lit up at night

     
  9. Hurdman: artwork by Jill Anholt
    curved metal shape with shifting colour

     
  10. Tremblay: artwork by Jyhling Lee
    reflective metal sculputres

     
  11. St-Laurent: artwork by Andrew Morrow and temporary mural by Taqialuk Nuna, Moe Simega Kelly, Anna Rickenbacher Mguni, Vanessa Michalchuk, Mèg-Ane Letang, Jenna Brown & Embassy of Imagination, Pascale Arpin and Dominic Sonier
    mural

     
  12. Cyrville: artwork by Don Maynard
    metal trees

     
  13. Blair: artwork by cj fleury and Catherine Widgery
    hanging rectangles made of coloured glass

The City of Ottawa Public Art Program commissions site-specific art through a one percent funding allocation from new municipal development projects. As part of this Program, the O-Train Public Art Program launched in 2012 with a series of calls to artists, including separate opportunities for Algonquin Anishinabe artists for Pimisi Station. Twenty-four artists were peer-selected to create artwork for 13 stations along 12.5 km.

More information about the O-Train Confederation Line

Introducing Corridor 45|75

Corridor exhibit space logo

Corridor 45|75
Rideau Station, O-Train Confederation Line LRT, West Concourse – Level 2 (accessible through the Rideau and Sussex entrance)
ottawa.ca/4575corridor
facebook.com/corridor4575
Open daily. Free admission to the exhibition space.Wheelchair accessible.

Stage 2: Confederation Line and Trillium Line Extensions

stage 2

About

Stage 2 will add 44 kilometres of rail and 24 new stations, extending light rail farther south to Limebank Road with a spur to the Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport, east to Trim Road, and west to Baseline Road and Moodie Drive.

Public Art Projects

The O-Train Stage 2 Public Art Program is providing a public canvas to artists across the world.

It will position Ottawa as a leading city for innovative and engaging contemporary art in the public domain. The goal is to create a cohesive narrative between and along the transit lines, regions and geography of the city and enhance the transit rider experience for visitors, and residents. Artist-led teams have an opportunity to address space, object, and pedestrian movement.

The Stage 2 Public Art Program will engage five separate teams to design and implement public art within five separate sections of the alignment:

      •  
  • Confederation Line East Extension: One artist team will integrate works of art and work to transform the following LRT Stations: Montréal, Jeanne d’Arc, Place d’Orléans, Orleans Blvd and Trim, as well as the surrounding landscape.
  • Confederation Line West Extension #1: One artist team will integrate art and work to transform the following LRT Stations: Westboro, Dominion, Cleary, New Orchard and Lincoln Fields stations.
  • Confederation Line West Extension #2: One artist team will integrate art and work to transform the following LRT Stations: Moodie, Bayshore, Pinecrest, Queensview, Iris, and Baseline stations.
  • Trillium Line: One artist team will design digital media artworks at various spaces throughout three feature stations: Gladstone, South Keys and Bowesville.
  • Byron-Richmond Corridor: One artist team will design and implement a community engagement process that capitalizes on the Byron-Richmond Corridor’s assets, inspiration, and potential, to create a quality public space and experience for its users.

Calls and opportunities: O-Train Public Art

Confederation Line East/West Extensions Public Art Projects

This competition is now closed. Learn more

Overview

This opportunity will result in three artists’ teams working with the O-Train Stage 2 Design Team to create a cohesive narrative between and along the O-Train Confederation East/West extensions.

  1. Confederation Line East Extension:  One artist team will be given an opportunity to integrate works of art and transform a series of five station sites – Montreal Road, Jeanne D’arc, Place d’Orléans, Trim, Orleans Blvd and the surrounding landscape.
  2. Confederation Line West Extension #1:  One artist team will be given an opportunity to transform a cluster of five station sites that include Westboro, Dominion, Cleary, New Orchard and Lincoln fields.
  3. Confederation Line West Extension​ #2: One artist team will be given an opportunity to transform a cluster of six station sites that include Moodie, Bayshore, Pinecrest, Queensview, Iris, and Baseline.

As members of the design team, artist teams will have an opportunity to address space, object, and pedestrian movement. The public art designs may include integrated, non-integrated artwork, place-making and cultural landscaping elements as a component of the overall design of the station sites.

Selection process

  • Stage 1: Request for Qualifications 
    Artists’ teams are invited to submit their credentials to be reviewed for eligibility by City of Ottawa procurement staff and selected by an independent jury of arts and art transit professionals. The selection jury will recommend a shortlist of candidates from the submissions received through the RFQ.
  • Stage 2: Request for Interview
    Artists’ teams who have been shortlisted will be invited to attend an information session with Stage 2 Design Team in June 2019 - followed by an interview to the selection committee.

Key Team Members: Relevant Project Experience

  • Three (3) years demonstrated project experience of complex public art, preferably within transit projects
  • Public art in complex multi-model national and international architecture or infrastructure projects
  • Innovation and problem solving
  • Demonstrated experience working as members of an artist team and/or multidisciplinary design team on large scale urban development projects, in particular related to architecture, engineering (e.g. structural, civil, electrical, mechanical), landscape architecture and/or industrial design
  • Demonstrated experience with managing project budgets over $1 Million CND
  • Knowledge and ability to read and interpret architectural drawings and meet requirements for engineering preliminary design, final design and construction as well as fabrication and installation of public art, including tendering process
  • Availability for the duration of the project time

Trillium Line Public Art Project

This competition is now closed.

Overview

The public art opportunity is for one artist team to design digital media artworks at various spaces throughout three station sites along the Trillium Line: Gladstone, South Keys and Bowesville.

Artist teams will have an opportunity to address space, object, and pedestrian movement. The public art designs may include integrated, non-integrated artwork, place-making and cultural landscaping elements as a component of the overall design of the station sites. Maximizing public access and visibility of public art elements will be important considerations for the success of the O-Train extensions in Stage 2.

Selection process

  • Stage 1: Request for Qualifications 
    Artists’ teams are invited to submit their credentials to be reviewed for eligibility by City of Ottawa staff and selection by an independent peer selection committee of arts, and art transit professionals. The selection committee will recommend a shortlist of candidates from the submissions received through the RFQ.
  • Stage 2: Request for Proposal 
    Artists’ teams who have been shortlisted and will be invited to submit a proposal to the selection committee July 2019.        

Lead Artist: Relevant Project Experience

  • Project experience of complex public art projects within large-scale Public-Private Partnership (P3) projects and/or Design, Build, Finance, Maintain (DBFM) projects, preferably projects specific to transit;
  • Experience completing three (3) to five (5) digital public art projects (including design, fabrication and installation) in complex multi-phased national and / or international projects;
  • Public art in complex multi-model national and international architecture or infrastructure projects;
  • Innovation and problem solving;
  • Demonstrated three (3) years+ experience working on an artist teams and/or multidisciplinary infrastructure design team;
  • Demonstrated experience with managing and authoring projects over $500,000.00 CND;
  • Knowledge and ability to read and interpret architectural drawings and meet requirements for engineering preliminary design, final design and construction as well as fabrication and installation of public art, including tendering process;
  • Availability for the duration of the project timeline.

Learning Series

The Public Art Learning Series is presented by the City of Ottawa Public Art Program’s O-Train Public Art Program to provide artists and arts professionals with the knowledge to bring ideas from the studio into the field of public art. Sessions 2 and 3 are presented with contributions by the Ottawa Art Gallery. The first session was held in November 2018.

The Public Art Learning Series is made possible by the O-Train Stage 2 Public Art Program funding.

New! Free admission! The following sessions are now open for registration: Session #2 & Session #3.

Session 2: From a Studio Practice to Creating Public Art

blue and green large sculptures

This public lecture will explore and contextualize contemporary public art from large-scale permanent commission works to smaller community-based projects. Hosted by Adrian Göllner, local artists Jesse Stewart and Cara Tierney will speak to their experiences of adapting their studio practices into the realm of public art, while Ryan Stec of Artengine will relay how their artist-run centre has worked to develop technology-based public artworks. This panel discussion will be followed by a keynote presentation by the Toronto-based artist team of Jennifer Marman and Daniel Borins. Marman and Borins have created a dynamic in which their studio-based works and public artworks continually inform and enrich each other.

This session will be presented in English with optional simultaneous translation in French.

Registration required.

Photo: Jennifer Marman and Daniel Borins, The Water Guardians, 2015, West Donlands, Toronto, galvanized steel, polyurethane enamel, rubberized surfacing, pavers, 24’h x 14’w x 5’d. Commissioned by Waterfront Toronto. Image courtesy of the artists.

Session #3: Public Art Workshop

glass hole on ceiling

The Public Art Workshop is intended for artists with studio practices but who have little experience with public art. This workshop will introduce attendees to the public art process and the challenges involved in winning a commission. Artist Adrian Göllner will lead the workshop which will include presentations by a professional public art manager and Mike Bilyk, a fabricator specializing in public art.

Registration required.

Photo: Adrian Göllner, North, 2005, dichroic glass and aluminum, 6.2m round. Canadian Embassy, Berlin. Photo credit: Karen Mills.