Public Art Program

The City of Baltimore, named the “Monumental City” over 175 years ago, expands public experience with visual art by creating a public artwork program that encourages the direct commission of artwork for municipally supported projects; and engages the individual and collective imagination of artists who create artwork for public places.

BOPA enforces the One Percent for Art Ordinance, which administers the expenditure of public funds for fine arts additions to public projects.

What is Public Art?

Public Art is more than just an artwork temporarily or permanently placed in a public space. Public art  can be a variety of artistic forms and media. Works can be created for inside or outside spaces; be naturalistic or conceptual. Public art can be integrated within architecture, landscape or infrastructure. It can be functional, commemorative, decorative, or interactive. It can employ technology, text, or sound.

Both the form and role of public art varies from community to community.
Public art can contribute to the visual and textural character of a community, create a sense of place or foster a sense of spirit by celebrating history or cultural heritage. Public art seeks to inspire relationships and communication.

 % for Art Program

The Baltimore % for Art Program was the second such program in the country.  The % for Public Art Program requires that at least 1% of all eligible funds for a construction project shall be allocated for artwork for that specific project or another public art use as determined by the Public Art Ordinance.

Public Art News

Call for Artists: Public Art Project (Philadelphia) -   Call to Artists | Requests for Qualifications Project Budget: $37,000 Deadline for Submissions: March 29, 2017 Download the Full Call to Artists Here Application Synopsis Introduction The City of Philadelphia’s Percent for Art Program, through the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE) announces a $37,000 competition to commission a site-specific artwork Read More →
Call for Artists: Maryland Public Art Project - Easton Readiness Center Public Art Project Opportunity for Maryland Artists; Background qualifications application deadline: Friday, March 24, MIDNIGHT The Maryland State Arts Council is now accepting applications for the Maryland National Guard Easton Readiness Center public art project. Professional artists or artist teams residing in the state of Maryland are eligible to apply. The permanent Read More →
Call for Artists: Public Art Projects in Hagerstown, MD - The Hagerstown Cultural Trail has released two fast track calls at the links below: — interactive sculpture project, Submission deadline is one month away on 2/15/17 and we hope to have sculptures in place by June; open to artists who work or live within 75 miles of Hagerstown; this includes Baltimore and Washington DC and Read More →
Call for Artists: Public Art Project (Florida) - Commission Name: Nathan Benderson Park and University Town Center Budget: $500,000 Application Deadline: 01/13/17 Commissioning Entity: Benderson Development City, State, Country: Sarasota, FL United States Link to this call here:
Call for Artists: Public Art Project (Colorado) - CENTRAL RECREATION CENTER, AURORA, CO                     The city of Aurora, CO is seeking an individual artist or team of artists to join the design team for a new recreation facility.  Integrating art elements that create a warm, welcoming and transformative experience as people enter the building is a primary interest. Especially desired is art work Read More →
Call for Artists: Public Art Project (Seattle, WA) - The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS), in partnership with Seattle Public Utilities (SPU), seeks to commission an artist or artist team to create a site integrated or site specific artwork that is reflective of Coast Salish historic and cultural connections to the Salmon Bay and Shilshole areas for SPU’s Ship Canal Water Quality Project Read More →
Call for Artists: Public Art Project, University of Maryland Baltimore County - The Maryland State Arts Council and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) are now accepting applications for the Interdisciplinary Life Sciences Building public art project. Artists residing in the United States are eligible to apply. The permanent public artwork will be two-dimensional, integrated on three large interior walls viewable from the first and second Read More →
Q&A With Shawn James of Mural Masters, Inc - If you’ve driven down East Fayette Street in the last month, you may have noticed a new mural going up. Shawn James and Charles Lawrance of Mural Masters Inc have been working on their Patterson Park Chesapeake Mural along with Kyle Miller and Tim Scofield who are fabricating a matching sculptural bus bench to be Read More →
Call for Artists: Charlotte (NC) Airport Public Art Project - Charlotte Douglas International Airport Concourse A Expansion–Phase I An Arts & Science Council project for the City of Charlotte and Charlotte Douglas International Airport Submission Deadline     DECEMBER 15, 2016 by 5:00 p.m. E.S.T. Applications will be received via (, an online application system. There is no fee to submit qualifications. Project Background The Arts & Science Council Read More →
Call for Artists: Public Art Project (Colorado) - Request for Qualifications: Colorado State University – Chemistry Building and Science Quad Total Budget: $284,000 Deadline: November 7, 2016 Applications can be submitted via, here. Qualifications are requested from artists and/or artist teams interested in creating a site-specific exterior public artwork or series of artworks for Colorado State University’s new Chemistry Building and Science Read More →



2 Thoughts on “Public Art Program

  1. Morenike Seaborn-Keys 2 Life Community Outreach on September 15, 2013 at 9:02 pm said:

    My church is renovating the basement for the daycare and youth initiatives program. How can we get our youth involved, and can our youth be apart of the project?

  2. You could hold a meeting for the young people in your church to discuss the project and brainstorm about ways they can participate in the renovation of your basement. Develop their leadership skills by making two or three of them chairs of the youth committees and let them organize their efforts. Provide adult supervision and supplies, give them a realistic time-line, and let them take the lead.

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