Burlington City Arts


Deadline: November 6, 2020 

Read FAQ's FAQ's will be updated when new questions are submitted for the benefit of all applicants, Please revisit this section prior to submission.


Burlington City Arts and the Office of Racial Equity, Inclusion and Belonging are partnering on a call to artists for a public mural project. 

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, The City of Burlington has declared racism a public health crisis, in an effort to combat the inequities caused by racism in every facet of our society--from education and housing to employment, justice and health outcomes, as well as within the arts. Many of the systems that create racism reduce the meaning of lives, but the arts have the potential to create meaning, and to express the beauty and trauma of the human experience. BCA appreciates the opportunity to connect with Vermont’s BIPOC artist community and work closely with colleagues from Burlington’s Office of Racial Equity, Inclusion and Belonging as one small step forward in the organization’s efforts to advance racial equity. 

The goal of this project is to create space for Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color to share their unique stories with the world and to create visibility for the impact racism has on our society through artistic expression, resulting in an outdoor exhibition of murals installed in public locations throughout the City of Burlington. 


The project will provide selected artists/artist teams with a $500 stipend to create a work of art on a sheet of 4’ x 8’ material provided by BCA. Work can be executed using any medium that will withstand outdoor elements for up to 4 months, as long as the work is dry and ready to hang when returned for exhibition. Multidisciplinary artist teams are encouraged to expand artistic potential and make it possible to bring performance artists, writers, poets and other non-visual art forms to the technical requirements of the mural medium. Therefore, artists from any discipline, such as poetry, music, dance, etc., are encouraged to apply in addition to visual artists as long as the technical requirements of the project can be met. Up to 20 artists may be selected to participate. Murals will be returned to the artist/artist team upon completion of the exhibition. 


November 6: Deadline for Proposals
November 13: Selection of artists (estimated)
December 7: Artwork Due for installation
December 18 – April 16: Outdoor Exhibition 


Submissions should consist of 3 PDF Documents that include: 

a. Brief artist(s) bio 

b. Description of past artistic activities 

c. Description of the concept behind the proposed submission and materials proposed for use 

d. Sketch/rendering of proposed concept 

To submit, login or create an account at and select 4x8 Call to Artists category. If access to technology or other barriers for submission arise, please contact or 802-865-5356. 


Proposals will be reviewed and selected by a Public Art Review Panel (PARP) comprised of community members, artists and arts professionals representing the area’s multicultural communities and Burlington’s geographic neighborhoods. 


Criteria for selection will include: 

 Ability of submission to address or reflect project goals (create visibility for the impact racism has on our society through artistic expression, and/or provide opportunity for Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color to share their unique stories with the world) 40% 

 Unique identities and experiences of artist/artist team demonstrated by the artist bio(s) 40% 

 Clarity and professionalism of submission materials 20% 


 Vermont Artists over the age of 14 years old working in any medium are eligible to submit. 

 Artists must be able to deliver work to Burlington by due date. 

 Previous mural experience is not required. 

 Concepts will not be eligible that incorporate hate speech, hate symbols or profanity. 

 BCA Board of Advisors and BCA Regular staff members are not eligible to apply. 

Selected artists will be required to sign an agreement with the City of Burlington (Attachment A to this Request for Proposals). If selected artist is younger than 18 years of age, a legal parent/guardian will be required to sign the agreement on behalf of the selected artist. 

For questions, contact Sara Katz at 


The City assumes no responsibility or liability for the response to this Request for Proposals. 


Any costs incurred by any person or entity in preparing, submitting, or presenting a proposal are the sole responsibility of that person or entity, including any requests for additional information or interviews. The City will not reimburse any person or entity for any costs incurred prior to the issuance of the Agreement.


Any party responding to this Request for Proposals is acting in an independent capacity and not as an officer or employee of the City. Any party responding to this Request for Proposals will be required to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless the City, its officers, and employees from all liability and any claims, suits, expenses, losses, judgments, and damages arising as a result of the responding party’s acts and/or omissions in or related to the response.


The City reserves the right to reject any or all proposals, or to award the contract to the proposals that the City deems will meet its best interests. The City reserves the right to re-advertise for additional proposals and to extend the deadline for submission of the proposals. This Request for Proposals in no way obligates the City to award a contract. 


Any materials submitted to the City in response to this Request for Proposals shall become the property of the City unless another arrangement is made by written agreement between the City and the responding party. The responding party may retain copies of the original documents. 


Any and all records submitted to the City, whether electronic, paper, or otherwise recorded, are subject to the Vermont Public Records Act. The determination of how those records must be handled is solely within the purview of City. All records the responding party considers to be trade secrets, as that term is defined by subsection 317(c)(9) of the Vermont Public Records Act, or that the responding party otherwise seeks to have the City consider as exempt must be identified clearly and specifically at the time of submission. It is not sufficient to merely state generally that a proposal is proprietary, contains a trade secret, or is otherwise exempt. Particular records, pages, and sections which are believed to be exempt must be specifically identified as such and must be separated from other records with a convincing explanation and rationale sufficient to justify each exemption from release consistent with Section 317 of Title 1 of the Vermont Statutes Annotated. 


Bidders are advised that public health emergencies, as declared by the City, the State of Vermont, or the Federal Government, including the current pandemic of Novel Coronavirus (COVID–19), may introduce significant uncertainty into the project, including disruption of timelines or revised practices. Artists shall consider public health emergencies as they develop project schedules and advance the work. 

The City will retain the right to inspect all work to ensure compliance with health and safety standards, and may at any time require the Artist to stop work because of the emergency. 

If a public health emergency is declared, the City will not be responsible for any delays related to the sequence of operations or any expenses or losses incurred as a result of any delays. Any delays related to public emergencies, including the current pandemic of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), will be excusable, but will not be compensable. 


Attachment A: Artist Agreement 




  • What happens to the artwork when the exhibition is over?
    • Artwork is returned to the artist after the exhibition period is complete.
  • Can I submit to this RFP if I'm a musician, poet or dancer?
    • No previous mural experience is necessary to apply to this call to artists, but teaming up with another artist who has the technical skills to complete a piece can be a great way to include traditionally non-visual media into this project. For example, a poet's word can be written out by a calligraphic artist, or a graphic artist could design a font for the words to be laid out in paint.
  • If I submit as a team of two artists, would we each receive a stipend?
    • There is only one $500 stipend budgeted per mural at this time.
  • I am a white artist. Am I eligible to apply?
    • Yes, all artists living in Vermont are eligible to apply.
  • I am an artist living in New York State. Am I eligible to apply?
    • No, this project is limited to Vermont artists.
  • Are there any indoor sites for this project?
    • No, all sites will be outdoors, so consider this when selecting materials for your 4'x8' mural.
  • Can I propose collaging materials to make a mural?
    • Yes, as long as you present a method to adhere and protect the materials while the piece is outdoors and your proposal is an original artistic vision, you can use collage materials
Burlington City Arts
135 Church Street
Burlington, VT 05401