Public Art Project: Morrison Road Plazas 
     Art Students League (North Plaza): Approximately $100,000
     City of Denver Public Art (South Plaza): Approximately $100,000
Eligibility: Artists or Artist Teams residing in the United States 
DEADLINE: Monday, August 19, 2024, 11:59 P.M. MST

Denver Public Art, in collaboration with the Art Students League of Denver, seeks to commission artists or artist teams to create original public artworks for two future pedestrian plazas located in the Westwood neighborhood in Denver, CO at the intersections of Morrison Road and S. Newton Street and W. Custer Place.

This is a joint call for artists between two entities – the Art Students League of Denver and the City and County of Denver (“City of Denver”). Art Students League of Denver will contract with one artist or artist team and supply the budget for the North Plaza (S. Newton St). The City of Denver’s Public Art Program will have a separate contract and budget for the artist(s) or artist team selected for the South Plaza (W. Custer Place). Both pieces will be added to the Denver Public Art collection; upon completion, Art Students League will be donating the North Plaza artwork to the City of Denver. All applicants submitting qualifications will be considered for both projects. Each project will have a separate contract with the respective entity (Art Students League of Denver or City and County of Denver Public Art Program). Both commissions will be selected by a 13-member selection panel of community representatives, arts professionals and civic leaders that have been assembled to select and recommend artist(s) or artist team(s) for these projects.

The goal for the two public art projects is to celebrate and reflect the culture, people and ecosystem that has been created and sustained in the Westwood neighborhood in Denver. The selection panel wishes for future artworks to speak to the uniqueness of the young, diverse, vibrant and artful culture of Westwood and to celebrate the community’s hard work in building a place that is collaborative, symbiotic and thriving, and works together to meet community needs. The panel is interested in artists who deeply understand the community’s sensitivities to potential displacement and gentrification, can demonstrate an interest in local involvement and community engagement, and will prioritize listening and collaboration.

Denver Public Art and the Art Students League of Denver will host a hybrid information meeting for artists on August 12, 2024 at 6 p.m. for interested applicants in person in Westwood, and online via Zoom. The meeting will cover project background and goals, and the application process for this Request for Qualifications (RFQ), as well as the Westwood Recreation Center Public Art Project (a separate RFQ published by Denver Public Art that is in proximity to this project’s location). Attendees will also receive information on through which artists may apply. Interested applicants are asked to register to get information on how to join prior to the event. If interested applicants cannot attend, a recording will be available on the Denver Arts & Venues Vimeo channel.

Denver Arts and Venues Land Acknowledgment
We acknowledge that the land Denver’s Public Art Collection occupies – – land where we stand, live, work and learn — is the traditional territory of the Ute, Cheyenne and Arapaho Peoples. We also recognize the 48 contemporary tribal nations that are historically tied to the lands that make up the state of Colorado. Our nation was founded upon and continues to enact exclusions and erasures of Indigenous Peoples. May this acknowledgment demonstrate a commitment to dismantling ongoing legacies of oppression and inequities, as we intentionally honor and celebrate the Indigenous communities in our city and express our gratitude for their ongoing and significant contributions. Let’s not forget that this land was theirs long before we made it ours.

About Westwood
The Westwood neighborhood is one of the most culturally vibrant neighborhoods in the Denver Metro area. The neighborhood is in southwest Denver, bounded by Sheridan Boulevard on the west, Federal Boulevard on the east, Alameda Avenue on the north, and Mississippi Avenue on the south, with Morrison Road diagonally bisecting the neighborhood. The Westwood community has a culturally rich population known for its grassroots efforts in collaboration, advocacy and the arts. Westwood is home to many cultures, including Mexican, Vietnamese and Native American, which contribute to its rich cultural landscape and identity. The neighborhood is predominately Latino/x, comprised of first and second generation Mexican American immigrants who care deeply for their community and are committed to preserving and celebrating their culture. Westwood is home to many dynamic community organizations and non-profits that are committed to reinvestment and successful growth of the neighborhood. Morrison Road serves as the predominant commercial corridor for the neighborhood, known for its bright colors, murals, and diversity of businesses, housing and the arts. Strong community cohesion, a unique mix of cultures and civic pride bolster the neighborhood. As residents and stakeholders anticipate neighborhood improvements, there is a common hope and desire that progress will not result in displacement and that affordable housing and employment opportunities will continue to be within reach in the future. Many changes are on the horizon for the neighborhood (including the new recreation center, street, and pedestrian infrastructure improvements, etc.), and the public art projects at Westwood Recreation Center will be a notable addition to the improvements in the neighborhood.

*Information referenced above is from the Westwood Neighborhood Plan, adopted by Denver City Council in 2016. The full document is located here: Westwood_Neighborhood_Plan.pdf ( Please visit this link for more information about the Westwood neighborhood.

What community members say is unique about the Westwood neighborhood:

  • The Latino/Asian fusion
  • “The way we are able to work together to meet community needs.”
  • That many artists live and work there
  • One of the youngest populations demographically in Denver
  • The culture and generations that exist there and how it’s changed over time
  • “The geography of a mile and a half, diagonal road – you know you’re in Westwood when you’re on Morrison Road.”
  • The unique architecture
  • Gardening and agriculture, and the education that occurs surrounding those practices
  • The art and music created there
  • “The vibrant colors make it unique; it makes it feel like I belong there.”

*The above information was gathered from an open community meeting about the project on 3/18/24

 Goals, Site, Media & Materials
The selection panel members have set forth specific goals for this public art project with the hope of creating unique and inspiring works of art for the diverse communities along the Morrison Road corridor.


  • Artworks should enhance the cultural vibrancy of the neighborhood and reflect and celebrate what has been previously built by the community that lives there.
  • Artists should be locally involved and/or focus on community engagement, and should be sensitive and aware of community needs and concerns around displacement and gentrification.
  • Artists are encouraged to consider themes of celebrating the neighborhood’s vibrancy, resilience and uniqueness (and are encouraged to draw from themes laid out in the “About Westwood” section above).

Artwork Sites
Finalists will be asked to create an outdoor public artwork within one of two public pedestrian plazas along Morrison Road. The selection panel has identified locations for potential artworks within two (future) raised pedestrian plazas.

North Plaza (Morrison Road at S. Newton Street)
To be contracted with Art Students League of Denver

South Plaza (Morrison Road at W. Custer Place)
To be contracted with the City and County of Denver

Media & Materials:
The selection panel is open to artwork in all media and materials suitable for outdoor display. Durability and ease of maintenance are important at this location.

Maintenance & Durability
Both artworks will become a permanent addition to the Denver Public Art collection. All applicants must consider the issues of long-term conservation and maintenance of public art, along with time and budget. These projects are in the public realm and will be exposed to physical stresses, as well as being subject to vandalism. Public art projects should be fabricated of highly durable, low-maintenance materials. Finalists are encouraged to consult with a professional conservator prior to the submission of a final proposal. Artist proposals awarded contracts will be reviewed by the City of Denver’s Public Art Committee to ensure conformity with city standards of maintenance and durability, as well as Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards. All finalists are expected to stay on budget and to complete work in an approved timeframe.

Who May Apply
This project is open to artists residing in the United States. Denver Arts & Venues and Art Students League of Denver are committed to supporting a public art collection that represents a broad diversity of artists and encourages applicants from historically marginalized and underrepresented communities, including artists who identify as Black, Indigenous, Latino/x, People of Color (BILPOC), people with disabilities, and members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersexual, asexual, Two-Spirit+ (LGBTQIA2S+) communities. Denver Arts & Venues and Art Students League of Denver also encourage applicants at various stages in their career and applicants practicing a variety of artistic disciplines.

Can a team apply?
Applicants may apply as a single artist or multi-person collaborative group. If applying as a team, please submit one résumé for the team, with no more than one page per team member.

Applying for these opportunities
In response to this RFQ, applicants will be asked to submit the following items via (CaFÉ™).

  1. Six digital images of past work
  2. Résumé
  3. Statement of interest no longer than 2,000 characters

From these applications, the selection panel will choose three to five finalists per location who will create site-specific proposals and be interviewed in person or virtually. Artists will be paid an honorarium for this work. Artists/teams selected as finalists will be required to submit a Diversity & Inclusiveness Form for their proposals to be considered, which will be provided upon notification. As directed by Executive Order 101, this form must be submitted for all city solicitations of proposals. Denver Public Art staff can guide you in filling out this form.

Based on the interview and proposal, an artist or artist team will be selected for this commission. The selected artist or artist team will work with Denver Public Art staff and Denver Department of Transportation and Infrastructure (DOTI) when finalizing their designs for installation.

Diversity and Inclusiveness
Denver Executive Order No. 101 establishes strategies between the City and private industry to use diversity and inclusiveness to promote economic development in the City and County of Denver and to encourage more businesses to compete for City contracts and procurements. The Executive Order requires, among other things, the collection of certain information regarding the practices of the City’s contractors and consultants toward diversity and inclusiveness and encourages/requires City agencies to include diversity and inclusiveness policies in selection criteria in solicitations for City services or goods when legally permitted. Diversity and Inclusiveness means inviting values, perspectives and contributions of people from diverse backgrounds, and integrating diversity into hiring and retention policies, training opportunities and business development methods to provide an equal opportunity for each person to participate, contribute and succeed within the organization’s workplace. “Diversity” encompasses a wide variety of human differences, including differences such as race, age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, physical disabilities, appearance, and historically underutilized and disadvantaged persons, as well as social identities such as religion, marital status, socio-economic status, lifestyle, education, parental status, geographic background, language ability and veteran status.


Denver Public Art Budget
The Denver Public Art budget for the South Plaza (Morrison Road and W. Custer Place) commission is $100,000 which will be allocated to the artist/team selected. These funds come from the City of Denver’s 1% Percent for Public Art Ordinance resulting from the Morrison Road Improvement Project. This contract amount is inclusive of all costs associated with the project including, but not limited to, the artist’s design fee, other consultation fees such as structural engineering consultation, insurance (including Colorado Workers Compensation), tools, materials, fabrication, transportation, installation, any building or site modification required, travel to and from the site, per diem expenses, project documentation, a contingency to cover unexpected expenses, and any other costs. For all work done on city property, prevailing wage requirements will be applied.

Art Students League Budget: NEA Our Town Grant
The Art Students League of Denver applied for and received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) “Our Town” grant to support public art for the Westwood Community. The focus of the grant is to supplement community engagement and public art in Westwood. Art Students League is seeking to combat Denver’s rapidly changing landscape through this public art process by representing and remembering the Mexican American, Native American and Asian American cultures and acknowledging the land and history of Westwood. The artworks are intended to enhance the redevelopment taking place in Westwood, and supplement community engagement and community connection through the creation of public art.

Art Students League’s budget for the North Plaza (Morrison Road and S. Newton St) commission is $100,000, which will be allocated to the artist/team selected. This contract amount is inclusive of all costs associated with the project including, but not limited to, the artist’s design fee, other consultation fees such as structural engineering consultation, insurance (including Colorado Workers Compensation), tools, materials, fabrication, transportation, installation, any building or site modification required, travel to and from the site, per diem expenses, project documentation, a contingency to cover unexpected expenses, and any other costs. The contract will be in accordance and compliance with The Davis-Bacon and Related Acts (DBRA). 

(Except for the online application deadline, the timeline is subject to adjustments)
August 19, 2024 11:59 P.M. MST               Deadline for entry (via CaFÉ™ system)
September/October 2024                           Finalist Selection
December 2024                                           Artist Selection and Notification

Project Selection Panel
According to Denver’s Public Art policy, the project selection panel plays an active role in the acquisition of public art for the City and County of Denver. The Morrison Road public art selection panel is comprised of 13 voting members and additional non-voting advisors. The selection panel is responsible for reviewing the site, establishing criteria for a request for qualifications, reviewing applications, selecting and interviewing finalists, and finally for selecting an artist or artist team for the commission.

Selection Process

  1. Three to five artists/artist teams will be selected as finalists. Those selected will receive more specific information regarding the sites and have the opportunity to meet with community members from the selection panel, Denver Public Art staff, Art Students League of Denver staff, and Denver Department of Transportation and Infrastructure staff. The finalists will receive an honorarium to prepare a proposal and present it in person or virtually.
  2. The selection panel will review the proposals, interview the finalists, and recommend an artist/artist team for the commission.
  3. The final recommendations of the selection panel will be presented to the Denver Public Art Committee, the Denver Commission on Cultural Affairs, and the mayor of Denver for final approval.

*All decisions of the City and County of Denver and Art Students League of Denver are final.

Materials to be Submitted
Please read this section carefully. Incomplete applications will NOT be considered. The applicant’s name must appear on all materials submitted.

All materials must be submitted online, via the CaFÉ™ website ( There is no application fee to apply or to use the CaFÉ™ online application system.

Digital ImagesTo be considered for this project, the applicant must electronically submit six digital images of previously completed artworks through the online CaFÉ™ system. Artists who wish to submit kinetic, sound or media works must submit a complete CaFÉ™ application and will have the opportunity to upload one video file.

IMPORTANT: if submitting audio or video files, do not use them as your very first image. They must be submitted last in your image sequence.

Instructions on how to format images to CaFÉ™ specifications can be found at Assistance in using the CaFÉ™ system is available here:

If an artist does not have access to a computer, s/he/they may call (720) 515-5768 to make arrangements to use a computer at Denver Arts & Venues.

To request this RFQ in an alternate format (such as Braille, large print, or accessible electronic format) please contact

Statement of InterestPlease submit a statement (2,000 character maximum) outlining the following:

  • Why the Morrison Road Public Art Project is of special interest to you (and/or your connection to Westwood if you have one)
  • Your interest in or relationship to themes of cultural vibrancy, resilience, collaboration or other themes discussed in the “about Westwood” section
  • Your experience with community engagement, and your approach to working with communities dealing with concerns around displacement and gentrification
  • Your design approach and experience working on public art projects

RésuméSubmit a one to two-page current résumé via CaFÉ™ that highlights your professional accomplishments as an artist. Please name your résumé file accordingly: Last name. First initial (i.e. Smith.J.pdf).  Résumés that are more than two pages will not be downloaded. If applying as a team, please submit one résumé with no more than one page per team member.

SurveyApplicants will also be required to fill out a short demographic survey that will be part of the CaFÉ™ application.

References – Applicants who are selected to be finalists will be required to provide three professional references.

Please direct all questions about the project to:

Hannah Leathers, Public Art Program Administrator,, (720) 515-5768
Rachel Basye, Executive Director, ASLD,, 720.638.7324

To request this RFQ in an alternate format (such as Braille, large print, or accessible electronic format) please contact

Denver Arts & Venues complies with applicable Federal, State, and local civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, gender, or language. It is your right to request oral or written language assistance services in your primary language, as well as ASL interpretation if needed. Please contact Denver Arts & Venues at and these services will be provided to you free of charge.