Call Detail
Paco Sanchez Park Public Art Project

Contact Email:
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: Local
State: Colorado
Entry Deadline: 1/23/17
Application Closed
Media Images:8


Paco Sanchez Park Public Art Project
Budget: approximately $18,000 USD
(Colorado artists only)

DEADLINE: Monday, January 23, 2017 11:59 PM MST

The Denver Arts & Venues Public Art Program and the Paco Sanchez Park Art Selection Panel has released a Request for Qualifications for artists who wish to work on a public art project for the Paco Sanchez Park. Paco Sanchez Park, located at 12th Avenue and Federal Boulevard in the West Colfax and Villa Park neighborhoods of west Denver. The park is the new site for the Re-imagine Play project.  Re-imagine Play is an innovative concept that goes beyond the traditional playground. It is intended to be a multi-generational activity and play area that gives park users of all ages the opportunity to remain active and enjoy a healthy lifestyle. The park will contain some traditional playground elements, but will also include custom-designed structures and landscapes that provide a more natural environment, encouraging park visitors to use their imaginations to create new, unique experiences every time they visit.

Paco Sanchez Park
This fitness, play, and leisure landscape expands the definition of play to promote public health in the underserved communities around Paco Sanchez Park. Traditional play features are enlarged, combined, and given new forms to encourage people of all ages to play -- from big bowl shaped slides to lounge nets and striped climbing walls. Unlike traditional playgrounds, which occupy a single site in the corner of a park, this one combines a series of play areas that are spread out across the park. Features are clustered around a natural amphitheater, so that play equipment doubles as seating for musical performances and movies.

Paco Sanchez
Francisco Paco Sanchez came to Denver in 1948 as the lead singer of his Latin music band. Six years later, he launched Denver's first Spanish-language radio station from his home. The same year, Sanchez and other community activists formed a credit union called the Good Americans Organization (GAO) to support economic development in the community. In 1968, GAO became the first private sponsor of a low-income housing project in Denver - the Avondale Housing Project on West Colfax. GAO continued to support affordable housing projects throughout Denver and Colorado. In addition to being a radio broadcaster and affordable housing advocate, Sanchez was chairman of the Coronado National Bank, a commissioner of the Denver Urban Renewal Authority and a founder of the Latin American Educational Organization. Notably, he was elected to a two-year term in the Colorado House of Representatives in 1968. Paco Sanchez died at age 57 in 1973.

The artwork or artworks can be located anywhere in Paco Sanchez Park. Specific locations for proposed artworks, to be determined at semifinalists’ site visit.      

Parameters & Goals
The selection panel members have set forth goals and parameters for this public art project with the hope of creating a unique and inspiring destination those who visit the parks. 

Materials & Media
The selection panel is open to artwork in all media and materials, including light and sound. 

Appropriate & Unique 
The selection panel seeks a unique, one-of-a-kind artwork(s) appropriate for  Paco Sanchez Park and for the visitors who utilize the park. The artwork should speak to community-based connections: history of the area, the legacy of Paco Sanchez, and the native residents of the Villa Park neighborhood. The selection panel is looking for artists who can demonstrate experience integrating artwork into the built environment and into the surrounding landscape. The art selection panel would like to ensure that artwork is commissioned from a Colorado resident.

Maintenance & Durability
All applicants are expected to consider the issues of long-term conservation and maintenance of public art, along with time and budget. These projects are located in the public realm and may therefore be exposed to weather and physical stresses, as well as be subject to vandalism. Public art projects should be fabricated of highly durable, low-maintenance materials. Semifinalists 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 and the Department of Construction and Engineering to ensure conformity with city standards of maintenance and durability, as well as ADA standards. All finalists are expected to stay on budget and to complete work in an approved timeframe.

This project is open to artists residing in Colorado, regardless of race, color, creed, gender, gender variance, sexual orientation, national origin, age, religion, marital status, political opinion or affiliation, or mental or physical disability. Artists working in any media are eligible to apply. Artists are not required to have previous experience in public art. Emerging artists are encouraged to apply for this commission. Contact the Denver Public Art office with any questions regarding this designation. The art selection panel would like to ensure that in addition to commissioning an artwork from a Colorado resident, that the artwork itself is fabricated in Colorado as well.

Applying for These Opportunities
In response to this RFQ, applicants will be asked to submit six digital images, a résumé, and a statement of interest no longer than 2,000 characters via (CaFÉ™). From these applications, the selection panel will choose up to five semifinalists who will be brought in for an interview with the panel. If a formal proposal is requested, the artist will be provided an honorarium of $500 to prepare and present the proposal in person. Semifinalists will receive more specific information regarding the site and have the opportunity to meet with project representatives, the design team and Denver Public Art staff.  If a formal proposal is requested, the artist will be provided an honorarium to prepare and present the proposal in person. Artists/teams selected as semifinalists will be required to submit a Diversity & Inclusiveness Form in order 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 Arts & Venues Public Art Program staff can provide guidance on filling out this form. Semifinalists will be expected to pay for travel expenses from the honorarium. From the interview or proposal, an artist or artist team will be selected for this commission. The selected artist or artist team for the commission will collaborate with the Public Art Program staff and the Levitt Pavilion design team when finalizing their designs for installation.

Please visit: for examples of recent commissions.

Can a Team Apply?
Applicants may apply as a single artist or multi-person collaborative group. In the case of teams, please submit a single résumé for the whole team with one to two pages per team member.

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 where legally permitted in solicitations for City services or goods. Diversity and Inclusiveness means inviting values, perspectives and contributions of people from diverse backgrounds, and integrates diversity into its 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, 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.

The budget for this commission is up to $18,000 USD. These funds come from the City of Denver’s One Percent for Art Ordinance which allocates 1% of Capital Improvement Project budgets to be set aside for the commission of public artworks. 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, contingency to cover unexpected expenses, and any other costs. For all work done on city property, prevailing wage requirements will be applied. 

Tentative Timeline
(Except for online application deadline, timeline is subject to adjustments)

Monday, January 16, 11:59 MDT    Deadline for entry (via CaFÉ™ system) Selection
February                 Semifinalist Selection 
March                    Finalist Selection
April                     Finalist Notification

Project Selection Panel
According to Denver Public Art policies, the project selection panel plays an active role in the acquisition of public art for Denver. The Paco Sanchez Park Selection Panel is comprised of voting members and additional non-voting advisors. The selection panel is responsible for reviewing the site, establishing criteria, writing a call for entry, reviewing applications, and selecting and interviewing semifinalists and finalists.

Selection Process
Up to five artists/artist teams will be selected as semifinalists, depending on the number of responses to the RFQ. Those selected will receive more specific information regarding the site and have the opportunity to meet with project representatives, the design team and Denver Public Art staff. The selection panel will interview semifinalists and/or review proposals from the semifinalists and recommend finalists for the commission. The semifinalists will receive an honorarium of up to $500 to prepare and present the proposal in person. The final recommendation of the selection panel will be presented to the Public Art Committee, the Denver Commission on Cultural Affairs, and Mayor Michael B. Hancock for final approval. All decisions of the City and County 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 Images - In order to be considered for this project, the applicant must electronically submit six digital images of previously completed artworks through the CaFÉ™ system. Artists who wish to submit kinetic, sound or media works must submit a complete CaFÉ™ application and include links to the work uploaded online, such as YouTube or Vimeo. 

Instructions on how to format images to CaFÉ™ specifications can be found at Assistance in using the CaFÉ™ system is available during regular business hours by calling 303-629-1166 or 888-562-7232, or via email at If an artist does not have access to a computer, s/he may call 720-865-5563 to make arrangements to use a computer at Denver Arts & Venues.

Statement of Interest - Please submit a statement briefly outlining your interest in the Paco Sanchez Park Public Art project and experience working on projects of this kind (2000-character maximum) via CaFÉ™.

Résumé - Submit 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 one to two pages per team member.

Please direct all questions about the project to Public Art Administrator Rudi Cerri at 720-865-5562 or  
Print this Page    View Legal Agreement