Karsh-Masson Gallery and City Hall Art Gallery
(left) Cheryl Pagurek – Fragile, City Hall Art Gallery.
(right) Barbara Brown and Cynthia O’Brien with Judith Parker, curatorial collaborator – LifeCycle Conversations, Karsh-Masson Gallery. Photos: City of Ottawa
Deadline: Wednesday, May 8, 2019, 12:00 pm (noon) EDT
Information meeting: Wednesday, April 10, 2019, 7 pm at Karsh-Masson Gallery, 110 Laurier Avenue West.
A short presentation will be followed by a question and answer period.
The City of Ottawa Public Art Program is now accepting exhibition proposals from professional artists and curators working in all media. Applications will be reviewed by a peer assessment committee and selected exhibitions will be presented at either Karsh-Masson Gallery or City Hall Art Gallery in 2020. All applications will be considered for both galleries. A preference to exhibit at either gallery may be indicated, however the Public Art Program will determine the final schedule and location of each successful exhibition.
About Karsh-Masson Gallery and City Hall Art Gallery
Karsh-Masson Gallery and City Hall Art Gallery are located on the main level at Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West. Both galleries are open daily from 9 am to 8 pm and are wheelchair accessible. Admission is free.
Exhibitions at Karsh-Masson Gallery and City Hall Art Gallery feature the work of professional artists working in all media and include solo, group and curated exhibitions, exhibitions from the diplomatic sector, and circulating exhibitions from other institutions. Both galleries present a combined total of approximately 11 exhibitions annually, each of which lasts approximately seven weeks. Annual programming consists of artist talks and tours, one exhibition of the City of Ottawa Art Collection, and one exhibition by a graduating student from the University of Ottawa MFA program. An exhibition related to the Karsh Award is presented every two years at Karsh-Masson Gallery and the next one will occur in 2020.
A public gallery is a forum for the exploration of diverse ideas. The City of Ottawa exhibits artwork in all media that are of interest and importance to the community, that foster a sense of who we are, and that reflect current artistic practices. These exhibitions are presented in the public domain allowing for an appreciation, understanding and interpretation of our past and present through gallery programming.
The City of Ottawa supports cultural activity that is inclusive of Ottawa's diverse community, including people from diverse ancestries, abilities, ages, countries of origin, cultures, genders, incomes, languages, races and sexual orientations. The City of Ottawa recognizes the Algonquin Anishinabe 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 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.
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.
Gallery Floor Plans
• Karsh-Masson Gallery
• City Hall Art Gallery
- This call for proposals is open to professional artists and curators working in all media. A professional artist is someone who has specialized training in his or her artistic field (not necessarily in academic institutions), who is recognized by his or her peers as such, is committed to his or her artistic activity, and has a history of public presentation.
- National and international applicants are eligible, however priority is given to applicants who live, or have lived, within a 150 km radius of Ottawa or who have a local connection, such as participating in the local arts community. Successful applicants will be responsible for all costs related to shipping artwork to and from the gallery, travel and accommodation.
- Applicants who have exhibited at Karsh-Masson Gallery or City Hall Art Gallery within the last two consecutive years are not eligible to apply.
Only one proposal per applicant will be considered. City of Ottawa employees or elected representatives are not eligible to apply.
Artworks with electrical components:
- Artworks that require electricity must be approved by an accredited certification or evaluation agency prior to being installed at Karsh-Masson Gallery and City Hall Art Gallery. The object(s) must have an official certification mark or label indicating that the product has been independently assessed for safety. A list of recognized certification marks and labels is available at www.esasafe.com/electricalproducts/marks.
- For more information, visit the Electrical Safety Authority at www.esasafe.com or call 1-877-ESA-SAFE (372-7233).
- Any costs associated with meeting the certification requirement are the sole responsibility of the artist.
- Applicants must provide documentation that their artwork(s) meets ESA standards (i.e. certification mark) in their proposal.
- Exhibiting artists will be paid an exhibition fee as outlined by the 2020 CARFAC Fee Schedule (A.1 – Category I). Curators will receive a professional curatorial fee.
- The City of Ottawa Public Art Program does not reimburse expenses related to travel, transportation of artwork and accommodation, nor are per diem fees paid.
- Complex installations of any kind which require support beyond the exhibition budget are the sole responsibility of the artist.
Assessment criteria and process
All eligible applications are reviewed by a peer assessment committee based on the following criteria:
- Artistic merit, originality and professionalism
- Cohesiveness of the artwork examples and the written proposal statement
- Appropriateness of the proposal to the highly public nature of the gallery spaces
- Regional importance
Peer assessment committee members first review eligible applications individually then meet to review them together. The composition of each 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 committee change with every competition. City employees are responsible for the selection of peer assessment committee members. If you are interested in participating as a peer assessment committee member, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- A complete application must include the support material listed below
- Support material may be written in English or French
- Files must be saved in a format compatible with Windows 10
- To format a PDF document, utilize “Save as” or “Export” from a Word or similar text-based document
Save item 1 as one PDF. Save items 2, 3 and 4 as one PDF. Applicants should send two PDFs in total.
1. Proposal synopsis (80 words maximum)
Summarize the proposal statement. The peer assessment committee will refer to the synopsis as a quick reference during deliberations.
2. Proposal statement (two pages or 1,000 words maximum)
- Describe the proposed exhibition’s content and theme, and how you will situate your artwork within the gallery space. A clear understanding of both spaces is necessary for the committee to visualize your exhibition (see gallery floor plans for reference).
- Two-person and group exhibitions must clearly outline a cohesive theme and rationale.
- Applications will be considered for both galleries. Requests to exhibit at either gallery must be explained in the proposal statement, however not all requests are granted.
- Due to the highly public nature of the galleries, proposed exhibitions must be as self-sufficient as possible.
3. Artistic resumé (three pages or 1,500 words maximum per artist)
Include contact information for the artist and for the applicant (if different from the artist): name, mailing address, telephone number and email address. If multiple artists are involved, include each artist’s resumé and indicate one contact person.
4. Image/media list (two pages maximum)
List the following information about each image/media file included in your application: artist’s name, artwork title, date, material and support, dimensions, and duration of artwork (if applicable). This list may also include additional information or a description about the individual artworks.
5. Digital images and/or media files
Send ten digital image files or ten minutes total of media content that support the proposal statement and follow the guidelines listed below.
- At least half of the images/media files submitted must be artwork that will be included in your final exhibition should your application be successful.
- Curated, two-person and group exhibitions: send ten files maximum.
- Applicants who wish to include a combination of digital images and media files: send ten files maximum with no more than ten minutes of content total. For each minute of video/audio content, remove one digital image (i.e. send 6 jpg images and one video file that is 4 minutes long or send 6 jpgs and 2 video files that are 2 minutes long each).
- Strict adherence to the naming convention outlined below is necessary for images to be uploaded into our database and successfully viewed during the peer assessment committee meeting.
Image files must be:
- Saved as JPG at 72 dpi and no larger than 2 MB each
- Named with the corresponding image list number, title, date, medium and dimensions, each separated by an underscore. Do not leave a space before or after the underscore. File names must not exceed 150 characters.
Format for naming image files:
01_The Mountain_2014_graphite, acrylic and metal_96 x 106 inches.jpg
02_Untitled 3 detail_2013_chromogenic print on paper_206 x 122 cm.jpg
03_Installation at Karsh-Masson Gallery_2005_mixed media_variable dimensions.jpg
Media files must be:
- Saved as MP4, AVI or WMV and no larger than 500 MB each
- Viewable in Windows Media Player or VLC Media Player
- Cued to the excerpt you want viewed (or provide detailed cue instructions in your media list)
- Named with the corresponding media list number, title, date, medium and duration, each separated by an underscore. Do not leave a space before or after the underscore. File names must not exceed 150 characters.
Format for naming media files:
|01_Memorial_2012_looped video_2 min.mp4
02_Echelles_2014_HD video_4 min 30 sec.mp4
03_Diaries_2018_installation documentation_6 min.avi
Support material that requires specialized software, plug-ins, extensions, or other executables that need to be downloaded or installed will not be reviewed. Applicants are responsible for testing support materials to ensure readability. The City of Ottawa is not responsible for any loss or damage to support material.
How to apply
Send all support material electronically to email@example.com using a file sharing web-based platform such as:
Send a CD, DVD or USB device containing all support material to the mailing address below. Include your name, mailing address, telephone number and email address on or with the CD, DVD or USB device. CDs, DVDs and USB devices will not be returned.
Call for proposals: 2020 exhibitions
City of Ottawa Public Art Program
172 Guigues Avenue
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 5H9
Applications can also be delivered in person to the Routhier Community Centre, 172 Guigues Avenue, at the customer service desk on Floor 1. Call the community centre directly to confirm hours of operation: 613-244-4470.
Do not deliver your application directly to Karsh-Masson Gallery or to City Hall Art Gallery.
Deadline and notification
Applications must be received by Wednesday, May 8, 2019 at 12:00 pm (noon) EDT for electronic applications or be postmarked on or before this date.
Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted.
The Public Art Program will send applicants a confirmation email when your application has been received and processed. If you do not receive an email from the Public Art Program two weeks after your submission, please contact us for confirmation.
Applicants will be notified of the peer assessment committee’s decisions by email within three months of the deadline date. Due to the volume of applications received for this competition, artistic feedback will not be provided.
Following the peer assessment committee’s deliberations, the selected exhibitions will be announced on ottawa.ca. Members of the public are invited to bring forward, within a 30 day period, any concern that the peer assessment committee did not comply with the publicly-announced criteria and procedures of the selection process.
Karsh-Masson Gallery and City Hall Art Gallery are operated by the City of Ottawa Public Art Program.
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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