Call Detail
53rd & 55th St. Viaduct Revitalization
Entry Deadline: 5/19/24
Application Closed
Work Sample Requirements
Images | Minimum:Min. 3, Maximum:Max. 5
Total Samples | Minimum:Min. 3, Maximum:Max. 5
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: Local
State: Illinois

Special Service Area 61 Hyde Park (SSA 61) welcomes artists to submit their artworks for consideration to revitalize the 53rd & 55th St. viaducts in Hyde Park. SSA 61 represents the welfare of the businesses in the Hyde Park district and understands the important role the viaducts play in welcoming visitors to explore those businesses. Each selected artist will be provided a set stipend of $3,000 per panel for the use of their artwork. Selected artworks will be reproduced on vinyl on the existing panels by third party printing and installation company, Moss Inc (Moss).

About SSA 61 and the South East Chicago Commission
The South East Chicago Commission is a 501c3 nonprofit organization that works to facilitate and support economic development within the Southeast lakefront communities of Hyde Park, Kenwood, Oakland, Washington Park and Woodlawn and to foster collaboration and coordination among businesses, organizations and institutions to promote the creation of jobs, investment and economic vitality. The SECC serves as the official Service Provider for Special Service Area #61 aka Downtown Hyde Park, which comprises the 53rd and 55th Street corridors connected by Lake Park Avenue. Special Service Areas, known as Business Improvement Districts or BIDs in other cities, are local tax districts that fund expanded services and programs through a localized property tax levy within contiguous areas.

A curatorial team of three representatives from the South Side will be responsible for the artwork selection and sequence. The jurors include Monique Brinkman-Hill, Executive Director of South Side Community Art Center, Mariela Acuña, Exhibitions and Residency Manager at Hyde Park Art Center, and Ciera McKissick, Public Programs Manager at Hyde Park Art Center. Chicago Public Art Group (CPAG) will not be selecting the artists.

Project Objective:

Successful submissions will approach the site with a bold and creative vision that reflects the community's best qualities - its connectedness, diversity, culture, entertainment, and residents. The viaducts connect the east and west side of the business districts allowing the art to seamlessly encourage movement throughout. Submissions should create an attraction that acts as an entry point for visitors to experience the viaducts as a "must see" amenity. This revitalization serves to improve the safety and well-being of pedestrians, bikers, and vehicular traffic by creating a sense of place for surprising, delightful interactions, welcoming visitors and residents alike to venture through Hyde Park.

The project goals are to connect with two groups: 

(1) Hyde Parkers, those who live east of the viaducts and need to walk through them to get to the restaurants and shops. The viaducts should be a joyful compliment to the local businesses and attractions that Hyde Park offers. This project is not intended to be a didactic display of South Side history. 

(2) Non-South Siders, fellow Chicagoans we want to pull in to Hyde Park for entertainment, shopping and eating. The goal is to make the viaducts welcoming and inviting for everyone.

There are a total of 19 landscape-orientation stainless steel panels: 13 on the Southside of 53rd St with most a variably standard size (8' x 12'), and one is longer (8' x 16'). The remaining 6 panels are on the Southside of 55th St: four are standard (8' x 12'), two are larger (8' x 16'). In submitting your artwork, please indicate on your annotated image list whether your artwork best fits on an 8' x 12' or an 8' x 16' panel. Due to the slight variations of each panel size, minimal cropping or image adjustments may occur at the discretion of Moss and CPAG. 

Each pre-existing panel will receive a large format, high quality digital print on 3M vinyl with self adhesive backing. The prints will be produced with a matte finish, professionally applied to the panels, and covered with a graffiti resistant coating. Moss will print and install each artwork. 

30 finalists will be notified and selected for their artwork submission to undergo review and approval by Moss. 19 or fewer artists will be awarded with a panel. 


The application is open from 4/5/24 - 5/19/24. Jury deliberation & Moss review will occur in May. Artist contracts will be awarded in June and artists payments will occur once artwork is print ready. Printing and installation will take place Summer 2024. The anticipated lifespan for the artwork is approximately 3 or more years. 

Application Requirements

Artists should submit 3-5 artworks. These can be pre-existing or newly developed artworks. At least one submission must be convertible to all size and electronic formatting requirements described in Moss' Color Management & Art Submission Guidelines included below. In addition to the jurors' selection, artworks submitted for reproduction will be pre-approved by Moss to guarantee they meet all requirements. Artists with a connection to Hyde Park are encouraged to apply. 

The artworks submitted for reproduction should provide an eclectic and pleasing aesthetic experience for passersby. Light, vibrant and bold colors are encouraged, but not required. Submissions can be digitally developed, or for existing work, can be photographed and processed digitally. Each panel will have a 10.5" explanatory text and credits on the bottom of the printed images in the same pre-existing brown color. Images of the viaducts can be found on CPAG's website project page linked above or the viaducts can be visited in person. 

Phase I & II

This is a two-phase submission process. Phase I includes everything on CaFE in the "What to Submit" section below. Due 5/19/24. 

(CaFE does not have the ability to accept submissions that will immediately meet Moss' Art Submission Guidelines)

In Phase II, the jurors will narrow the CaFE submissions down to 30 artworks. CPAG will ask artists to upload the selected artwork on Dropbox so it meets Moss' Art Submission Guidelines below. Artworks submitted that do not meet these guidelines cannot be considered for reproduction. Moss will conduct a review of each submission to ensure it is high resolution, reproducible and print ready. The jurors will make their decision on the final 19 artworks based on Moss' report. 


What to Submit

  • 3-5 images of your artwork. At least one of the images should be able to meet the guidelines below in Phase II. The additional artworks submitted should showcase previous experience.
  • Annotated Image List that clearly states which artwork is intended for this project's vinyl reproduction and what size panel it fits best: 8' x 12' or 8' x 16'. The Annotated Image List should also include the title, year, medium, size and location.
  • Artist Statement that describes your experience in Chicago as an artist and why you are interested in this project.
  • Responses to the two questions included in this call.


Helpful tips for submissions

  • The images you submit are exactly what the jurors are considering for reproduction.
  • The borders of the image should be the borders of your artwork.
  • Make sure your images are well lit, front facing, accurate alignment, not blurry, etc.
  • Images should be of your artwork only. No unveilings or backgrounds that do not directly apply to your artwork.
  • Be mindful of reflections if submitting an image of a wall mural.


Info Session

We strongly encourage applicants to attend the Zoom Info Session.

Wednesday, April 24 from 5:30 - 6:30pm CT

**The Info Session was not recorded. Please reach out to for any questions.



• Build exclusively as CMYK color space, Coated GRACol 2006 Profile.
• Ensure that PMS colors are designated in the art files supplied.
• RBG/HEX are not acceptable for print.

COLOR MATCH OPTIONS                  
We match color on the physical print material. Color match options are as follows:
• Ship or pick up one 1x1' physical hard copy for an additional fee.
• Pantone SPOT colors.
• Order physical proof(s) to approve color.
• Waive color approval/Print as is.

• Preferred file format is AI, but high res PDFs, EPS, PSD, PSB, and INDD files are also acceptable.
• Package files to ensure links are included.
• Preferred scale is 1:10 (10%).
• Bleed standard is 3% of overall file size; minimum ¼” - maximum of 4”.
• Large scale graphics, with critical art alignment, should be supplied as a single file. 

• Flatten all transparencies.
• Outline fonts.
• Images should be between 72-150 ppi at 100% of final size depending on process. At 1:10 (10%) 
scale, resolution should read 750- 1500 ppi.
• Link/embed any illustrations or graphics in the art.



Color Target for Pantone Colors
Pantone colors requested are compared and matched to the 2022 Pantone Color Bridge Coated book.

Art Requirements to Ensure Accurate Color Matching
• Apply Pantone colors to the corresponding art objects before submitting art files.
• Flatten any effects or transparencies present in the art.
• Use the Coated GRACol 2006 profile.

What is D50 lighting and why is it important?
D50 lighting was established as the standard for lighting utilized to view color and prints by the International Standards Organization (ISO 3664).
Color appearance can change in different lighting. It is important to use the D50 lighting standard to minimize color variations when viewing prints.

Eligibility Criteria

This call is open to Chicago and non-Chicago based artists over the age of 18. The artists will be selected on the basis of the quality of their work. This application process will also be used to assess skills in communication and time management. The selection will be restricted to artists who work in 2D formats in order to keep the reproduction on vinyl as true to the original as possible. This includes - but is not limited to - painters, muralists, photographers, digital painters and graphic artists.