Donation Guidelines

Guidelines for Potential Donors of Public Art to Baltimore

The potential donor should contact the Public Art Commission staff as early as possible to schedule and coordinate the presentation to the Commission of the proposed gift of public artwork, and to allow the Commission staff enough time to locate possible locations for the artwork.

  • Commission Staff:    C. Ryan Patterson, Public Art Administrator
  • Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts
  • 10 E. Baltimore Street, 10th Floor
  • Baltimore, MD  21202
  • Tel.: 410-752-8632

The goal for the presentation is to provide enough materials for the Commission to get a strong sense of what the actual artwork will look like, information on the medium employed in the work, and knowledge of the artist’s vision for the work. All presentations must include the following and be provided to the Commission Staff one week prior to the scheduled presentation to the Public Art Commission:


  1. Electronic images (in a Powerpoint or jpeg format) of the proposed donation: if the artwork already exists, a complete image of the artwork should be prepared; if the artwork is in the planning stages, as complete a representation as possible should be prepared, along with other electronic image examples of the artist’s work; and 
  2. If a specific location is desired for the artwork (please keep in mind that the Commission may choose to accept the artwork, but not the desired location), an electronic image of the proposed donation super-imposed onto that location; and 
  3. If the materials used in the work are unique, a small sample of that material should also be included in the presentation. 
  4. Inherent in the artwork donation, the donor should please remember that they must also cover the costs of the installation of the artwork.  This includes any costs associated with the installation of the artwork, including, but not limited to, any architectural or engineering services, equipment rental, location preparations and landscaping necessary for a fitting installation of the artwork. 
  5. Conscientious ownership of public art requires a commitment to complete regular maintenance of the work and grounds that surround the piece, as well as a commitment to conserve and protect it.  Public artwork can only be accepted if the donor agrees to provide funds necessary for conservation and maintenance that requires a conservator or other professional for a period of at least ten years after the piece is installed.  The City, in accepting the gift of artwork is accepting the responsibility to complete regular maintenance (light cleaning not requiring a conservator and attending to grounds around the artwork) of the artwork. 
  6. Upon the presentation of the artwork or proposed artwork to the Public Art Commission, any of the following may happen:


    1. The Commission has the option of voting immediately following the presentation and discussion or in an upcoming meeting pending resolution of outstanding questions or completion of additional research.
    2. If the artwork is approved, the Commission may provide input on the possible site for the artwork and requires final approval on the chosen location.  Once a site has been agreed upon, the Commission staff then works with the donor, artist, affected City agency and community, and other installation professionals to see the project through to completion.
    3. If the artwork is approved with conditions, the above is completed in accordance with those conditions set forth by the Commission.
    4. If the artwork is not approved and the artwork was in the proposal stages, the artist may make adjustments to the design and resubmit it to the Commission.



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