Call Detail
Request for Proposals: Outdoor Public Sculpture Frankfort, KY
Entry Deadline: 5/30/22
Application Closed
Number of Applications Allowed: 3
Work Sample Requirements
Images | Minimum:Min. 5, Maximum:Max. 10
Total Samples | Minimum:Min. 5, Maximum:Max. 10
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: Unspecified
State: Kentucky
Budget: 15,000

In partnership with the City of Frankfort, Josephine Sculpture Park (JSP) is seeking to commission an original outdoor site specific public artwork that is inspired by nature native to Kentucky. The work of art will be permanently installed in the Second Street Corridor, located between historic downtown Frankfort and the Capitol. 


This project is part of a multi-year public art initiative, installing sculptures, murals, and sidewalk poetry in historic Frankfort in an effort to make Frankfort the “Public Art Capital of Kentucky.”  Eye-catching art will transform empty walls and infrastructure into public canvases, showcasing what’s unique about Frankfort. This artwork will provide a sense of place, inviting people to slow down and appreciate the city's cultural heritage and history.

Frankfort, located between the state’s two largest cities, Lexington and Louisville is the capital of Kentucky.  It is a small historic town with a population of 28,000 in the city and 50,000 in Franklin County. It lies in a verdant landscape of bluegrass fields and forested hills and is bisected by the Kentucky River, which has carved a sharply defined geography through limestone palisades. Second Street is a corridor on the south bank of the river in the South Frankfort neighborhood that sits between the state capitol and downtown Frankfort on the north shore. It is located within two districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

The Second Street Corridor consists of a mix of commercial, residential and civic uses. Most buildings are from the late 19th or early 20th century and are two to three stories in height. This streetscape is scaled to people, consistent with its function as a neighborhood center.

The project is a collaboration between the City of Frankfort and several community organizations, including the Josephine Sculpture Park (JSP) who manages and curates the project. JSP is a 30 public sculpture park in Frankfort open to visitors for free from dawn until dusk 365 days per year with the mission of connecting people to each other and the land through the arts. JSP will serve as the main point of contact for all aspects of this project.


The sculpture will be a permanent installation at the corner of Second Street and Bridge Street.  Adjacent to the installation is Second Street School, a public Pre-K through 8th grade school in the Frankfort Independent School District.  The sculpture will be nestled in a newly re-designed triangular landscaped plaza viewed by both pedestrians and drivers on opposite sides.  It will be installed on a raised circular concrete pedestal that is 3 feet in diameter.  The pedestal will be surrounded by an ornamental dwarf Fountain Grass called Pennisetum, cultivar “Hamelyn” that will reach approx 18 inches tall with coloring of bright green, golden yellow and beige.  Surrounding the Pennisetum are hard-scaped designs of red brick pavers. A street light adjacent to the paver area will provide general lighting for the sculpture at night.  There is no underground power supply servicing the sculpture pedestal.  Architectural plans and “in progress” photographs of the site are included and should be thoroughly reviewed and considered before submitting a design. 


Artists submitting proposals for consideration are strongly encouraged to propose sculptures inspired by nature. This includes artwork relating to sustainability, recycling, or environmental preservation as well as plants and animals native to Kentucky, the KY River and river palisades. Artwork created using sustainable and recycled materials are encouraged if they meet durability conditions.  The nature theme was determined with input from local students, teachers and community members as they gathered to discuss their vision for the area. 


  • Must be suitable for a hands-on outdoor exhibition in a public space and designed with consideration of the safety of the public.
  • Capture attention, engage the public, and be appropriate to its location.
  • Aesthetically enhance the surrounding area and otherwise interact with its surrounding environment.
  • Must fit on a 3’ diameter circular raised concrete pedestal although some elements of the sculpture may extend beyond the 3’ base. Sculpture should be proportional to base and no taller than 15’.
  • Must be able to be anchored to the base to prevent the sculpture from being removed, tipped, broken or overturned.
  • Be constructed of permanent, durable materials and preferably be maintenance-free.
  • Be capable of withstanding adverse weather conditions including high winds, high temperatures, heavy rain, storms, etc.


The purchase price for the sculpture is $15,000. This includes all costs related to the artist’s design, supplies, materials, fabrication, site visit, transportation and delivery of the sculpture and all other costs associated with the art project up to receipt of the sculpture by the City. Installation, sign, and ongoing maintenance costs will be the responsibility of the City and Josephine Sculpture Park.  JSP will provide professional installation of sculpture with crane service available. 

Payments will be made directly to the artist(s) using the following schedule:

  • 30% of total agreed upon fee is paid when contract is signed.
  • 30% of total agreed upon fee is paid upon approval of final design.
  • 40% of the total agreed upon fee is paid within 30 days of receipt of sculpture in Frankfort.


Submissions will be judged/scored on the following,

  • Artistic quality of proposed artwork.
  • Appropriateness of proposed artwork to the site and theme of the project.
  • Experience with public art installations.
  • Permanence, durability, maintainability and use of high-quality materials.
  • Absence of hazards to the public.
  • Innovation in use of materials and techniques.
  • Ability of the artist to create and install the artwork within the established timeframe.


April 18, 2022Call for Art issued
May 30, 2022Deadline to apply
June 1- June 15, 2022Proposals reviewed
June 20, 2022Artists Notification
July 8, 2022Final Design Due
July 11, 2022Final Design Approval
Oct 2022, Dates TBDSculpture Installed

Timeline and Process Notes

Artist/artist team must be able to adhere to the above project timeline. After being awarded the commission, the selected artist/artist team will be provided with input and feedback from the selection committee on their submitted draft design. The selected artist/artist team is encouraged to visit the site and collaborate with the committee prior to submitting a final design for approval in July. 


Please direct all questions or requests for assistance to:

Josie Kirker, Grants Manager

Application Requirements


Submissions may only be submitted electronically through the CaFÉ website ( An artist may submit up to 3 designs. To aid the jury process, each design must be submitted in CaFÉ as a separate application.  Artist submissions will be reviewed by a selection committee comprised of art and design professionals, key funders/sponsors, community members, and property owners.

  • Current CV/resume. Teams must submit one resume/CV per team member.
  • Artist Statement. Limited to 2000 characters including spaces.
  • Draft conceptual design of proposed artwork. Acceptable formats include sketches, image of maquette, computer generated drawing, or other comparable media. This must be submitted as the first work sample. An artist may submit up to 3 designs. To aid the jury process, each design must be submitted in CaFÉ as a separate application.
  • Document with details of proposed design, including dimensions and weight of proposed artwork, description of materials, explanation of maintenance requirements, and timeframe in which you would be able to complete or deliver the sculpture, from award of contract to installation.
  • Work Samples in addition to draft design.  Min of 4, max of 8.  Up to 8 images max of previously completed work. Strongly encouraged to include work that is similar in size and nature to this project.  Please review and follow the printable image preparation guide on the CaFÉ website and provide work sample details as outlined in CaFÉ upload process including: title, media, dimensions, date, etc.
  • Three (3) professional references. Please include name, title, address, affiliation, phone number, and email address.
  • Optional. Artists may include up to three (3) selections of support materials such as reviews, news articles, and other related information.

Eligibility Criteria

The project is open to all established and professional artists in the United States, age 18 and over, regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, military status, sexual orientation, marital status, or physical or mental disability. Artist teams are eligible to apply, including teams of artists from multiple disciplines.

Applicants should have experience creating, fabricating and installing public art. Only artists with reviewable portfolios are eligible to submit proposals. Applicants who wish to be considered for this project should have experience creating durable outdoor public art pieces, working within the public process, proven ability to fabricate their own work/designs or to work with fabricators and installers. Artists working in a variety of materials are encouraged to apply, including but not limited to stone, metal, wood, concrete, found objects, natural materials, plastics, fiberglass, light, sound, etc.