Appalshop News

Call for artists to install public art on Appalshop grounds

3 months ago

Appalshop is seeking visual artists to design and install 3-6 new major public art installations around the Appalshop grounds. Recent grant funds were awarded to aid in a long-term goal of incorporating more public art into the grounds around the two main Appalshop buildings on Madison Avenue in Whitesburg. These installations can range from murals to sculpture to interactive installations or combinations of the above.  

In this process we are prioritizing local and regional artists, a diversity of artistic approaches and styles, long-term durability, and at least one interactive installation. Projects should be no more than $10,000 in cost, including materials and labor. However, we encourage $1-5,000 projects as well. Multiple proposals from a single artist or group are welcome.


  • Visually connect Appalshop Main and Boone Buildings.
  • Engage residents and visitors who pass by. 
  • Inform about the use and essence of Appalshop visually to visitors. 
  • Install 3 to 6 major public art installations. 



  1. RFP Released to public and sent directly to artists. 
  2. One group information session at Appalshop on Thursday, January 16th, 5:30pm at the Appalshop. There will also be opportunities for 1 to 1 visits with prospective artists and lead Appalshop staff before February 1. 
  3. Begin collecting proposals. The first 10 qualified applicants will receive $50 gift certificate.   
  4. Committee will review submissions, request clarifications and forward proposals to Appalshop Staff.
  5. Appalshop staff will review proposals, and select 3 – 6 artists through discussion and voting. 
  6. Artists will be awarded contracts to complete projects by Feb. 14th. 
  7. Projects must be completed by June 1, 2020.  

Qualified proposals will include

  • Sketch of project proposal in landscape of Appalshop grounds. 
  • Cover letter addressing Appalshop goals, project strategy/justification (max 2 pages)
  • Brief Project budget, including expected material and equipment costs, material source, and artist payment. 
  • Project timeline from selection to completion. 
  • 3 images or links to past work 
  • 3 professional references


Proposals should be submitted to [email protected] by February 1, 2020. Please include Public Art RFP in the subject line. Proposals can also be delivered to: Care Of Public Art RFP, 91 Madison Avenue, Whitesburg, KY.

The following ideas that have been generated by Appalshop staff, and can be used for inspiration for project proposals: 


  • Main parking lot
  • Solar Pavilion sides, ceiling
  • Between Boone & Appalshop
  • Boone exterior walls
  • Boone windows
  • Under the bridge on Madison Ave



  • Kinetic duck or opossum sculpture
  • Scrap metal shrubbery
  • Musical instrument sculptures
  • Giant mechanical camera
  • Timeline of Appalshop
  • Crosswalk and sidewalk painting between Boone and main Appalshop building
  • Marquees over entrances to Boone and main Appalshop building
  • Spray-paint wall
  • Quilt patterns
  • Native flying species and other items hanging in solar pavilion
  • Interactive music making sculpture



  • Music
  • Film
  • Heritage
  • Energy
  • Appalshop history
  • Bright / abstract
  • Invites play
  • Folk art / found art
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