Auraria Campus Denver

The Auraria Library, a space shared by three separate and distinct institutions of higher learning – the Community College of Denver, Metropolitan State University of Denver and the University of Colorado Denver, is being renovated to keep up with students’ changing needs. The panel is requesting proposals for outdoor artworks, either 3D or sculptural installations, and is seeking an artist to meet the challenge of how to best integrate artwork into the previously designed and constructed building. The deadline for submission is July 31st, 2015. Click through for full information.

This construction project, slated to be completed in December 2016, is a renovation project to update the Auraria Library in order to better serve the changing needs of the students on Auraria Campus in Denver, Colorado.

The Auraria Campus is a dynamic academic environment shared by three separate and distinct institutions of higher learning – the Community College of Denver, Metropolitan State University of Denver and the University of Colorado Denver. AHEC is a separate state entity whose role is to provide and manage shared services, facilities, and property to support these prominent institutions in achieving their goals. The collective student population is nearly 44,000, with an additional 4,000 to 5,000 faculty and staff.

The renovation of the Auraria Library is transforming the very idea of the term “library.” Renovations are creating a physical and intellectual space specifically designed to support excellence in teaching and learning , research and creative work, community engagement and workforce preparation and exploration of a rich, diverse information environment. Auraria Library is accustomed to being on the cutting edge. As the only tri-institutional academic library in the nation, the Auraria Library serves the students, faculty and staff of three leading urban institutions – the University of Colorado Denver, Metropolitan State University of Denver, and the Community College of Denver. The Auraria Library renovations will result in flexible spaces that are innovative, comfortable and that meet the needs of the students of today and tomorrow. When the Library first opened in 1976; it was designed to serve a maximum of 15,000 students. Today, it is the intellectual home of over 51,000 students. Almost a million people walk through the Library doors annually. Not only is Auraria Library serving more people, it operates in an entirely new context. The nature and technology of information exchange and knowledge creation are constantly evolving. The first floor of the library will be lively and active, and built with spaces for interactive student engagement and collaboration. The second floor will have more traditional, contemplative study space.  The footprint of the original library will not change, but the library’s internal courtyards that are exterior spaces will be updated, and outdoor patio space will be added to the library’s exterior. The overall exterior of the original building will be maintained, with the addition of a metal sculptural element at the main entrance.

BUDGET: $166,400
The public art budget is $166,400. All costs associated with the public art project including, but not limited to, artist design fee, structural engineering, insurance, materials, fabrication, transportation, installation, building or site modifications, travel to and from the site, per diem expenses, project documentation, contingency to cover unexpected expenses and any other costs related to the project.

Selected semi-finalists will be invited to propose artwork for one or all of the locations listed below. An honorarium will be provided in the amount of $1,000-$1,500.

Through the public art process, the Art Selection Committee will select the finalist artist(s)/team(s) who will work closely with the project architect and Art Selection Committee on the best approach to integrate the artwork(s) into the previously designed and constructed building. The building will be in use throughout the phased construction, which is slated to be completed December 2016.

The panel is requesting proposals for outdoor artworks, either 3D or sculptural installations. The panel will consider artworks of all media, with a preference for suspended, multipurpose, and/or interactive artworks. Areas of opportunity include the exterior of the building and one or more of the library’s internal outdoor courtyards.

Panel will consider the following:

  • Artistic excellence;
  • Technical competence;
  • Suitability to potential site;
  • Conceptual compatibility
  • Scale, material, form and content
  • Appropriate relationship to the function of the site
  • Contribution to diversity of the State’s public art collection
  • Structural and surface integrity;
  • Accessibility by the public;
  • Resistance to general wear, vandalism, or theft;
  • Ease of maintenance, minimal and low cost maintenance;
  • Compliance with applicable public safety codes.

Public art must be sustainable:

  • Artwork in exterior spaces would need to be able to withstand the intense sun and snow, wind and temperature extremes and fluctuations characteristic of the Denver area.
  • The artwork must be designed and fabricated to be durable, require low maintenance and low cost maintenance.

All applicants are expected to consider the issues of long-term preservation and maintenance of public art, along with the timeline and budget. Public art projects are in the public realm and may therefore be exposed to environmental challenges  and subject to vandalism. Public art projects should be fabricated of highly durable, low maintenance materials. Semi­finalists are encouraged to consult with a professional conservator prior to the submission of a final proposal.

All works of art purchased or commissioned pursuant to this request are owned by the State of Colorado via the University of Colorado Denver.   De-accession of the public art, if necessary, will follow the policies and procedures established by the Colorado Creative Industries.

All applicants must be legal residents of the United States. The artists or artist teams must have the skills and experience commensurate with the responsibility of successfully completing a major public art installation.  The Program is open to all artists regardless of race, color, creed, gender, gender variance, national origin, age, religion, marital status, political opinion or affiliation, or mental or physical handicap. The Art Selection Committee reserves the right to give preference to those artists residing in Colorado.

The Art Selection Committee will review all complete submittals. A short list of semi­finalists will be invited to prepare and present a final proposal in person and be paid an honorarium of $1,000 for in-state artists and $1,500 for out of state artists. Travel expenses may be reimbursed. Final selection(s) will be made from the semi­finalists’ proposals. The schedule is as follows:

July 31, 2015, 11:59 MDT – Deadline for receipt of submittal via CaFÉ™ system
August 2015 – Selection panel meets to select Semi-Finalists
August 2015 – Semi­finalists notified
September/October  2015– Semi­finalists visit campus
November/December 2015  – Semi­finalist presentations to the committee
February 2016 – Execute artist’s contracts
Summer/Fall 2016 – Installation of artwork(s)

All applications for this project are being accepted through CaFÉ™
( ). No hard copy submissions will be accepted. The applicant will be asked to submit six digital images of art and/or videos (see below for more information), a resume, a statement of interest and responses to questions. There is no application fee to apply or to use the CaFÉ™ online application system. Applications must be submitted through CaFÉ™ to be considered.

Digital Images. In order to be considered for this project, the applicant must electronically submit six digital images of previously completed artworks through the CaFÉ™ system.

Instructions on how to use CaFÉ™ and format images/video can be found at Assistance in using the CaFÉ™ system is available during regular business hours by calling 303­629­1166, 1­888­562­7232 or e­mail

Resume: Submit a current résumé, via CaFÉ™, that outlines your professional accomplishments as an artist. Your resume may be any length, but the committee members are only required to read to the first two pages.  If applying as a team, please submit a resume for each artist, with the lead artist first.

Statement of Interest and Responses to questions: A statement of interest in 250 words or less must be submitted via CaFÉ™.  It should briefly outline the artist’s interest in the specific opportunity and the artist’s experience working on projects of this scope. Please also include answers to the questions specified in the CaFÉ™ application.

Questions: Questions posted on CaFÉ™ related to this project must be answered.

If you require more information or clarification, please contact Ruth Bruno, Public Art Program Manager, Colorado Creative Industries at 303-­892-3813 or .

Full information found at:

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