Call Detail
Bridge Art for Interstate 25/ University Avenue Interchange Improvements, Las Cruces, NM
John Taschek, Senior Project Manager
Ecosphere Environmental Services, Inc.
1660 Old Pecos Trail, Suite H
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505

Contact Email:
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: Local
State: New Mexico
Entry Deadline: 1/22/18
Application Closed
Images - Minimum: 3, Maximum: 10
Total Media - Minimum: 3, Maximum: 10

The NMDOT Bridge Art Program enriches New Mexico’s public spaces through an innovative and diverse public art collection.  Our goal is to reflect the diversity of the arts in New Mexico, the Southwest, and the nation while building a dynamic public art collection for the State of New Mexico.
Through a fair and open public involvement process, a committee made up of local and regional representative will work with NMDOT to select an artist to work on the project.  NMDOT will then commission imagery that is designed for integration directly into the architecture and design of the bridge.

The Bridge Art Selection: Local Selection Committee (LSC) is seeking an artist or artist team to create site-specific designs for the I-25/University Avenue Interchange Improvements in Las Cruces, New Mexico.  The design, which will be developed by the artist, should express local values, relate to the local context, and provide a visual narrative for the traveling public.  The images are anticipated to be cast with form liners into the concrete bridge abutments and wall barriers.  The artist will be expected to be conversant with the selected media.  The commissioned work should address textures and colors as well as form.  The actual fabrication will be done through the project general contractor.  With consideration of public input, the design theme will include one or more of the following:

  • A native plant theme should be incorporated into the overall design, including concepts that tie native and agricultural plants from the region and the proposed project landscaping into the features of the interchange project.
  • Dual Gateway Concepts: 
  1. A City of Las Cruces gateway concept is planned for the I-25 interchange. The I-25 southbound retaining walls, the I-25 bridge and the northern Triviz roundabout should emphasize the City of Las Cruces gateway theme. 
  2. A New Mexico State University (NMSU) gateway concept is planned for the University/Triviz Bridge.  The University/Triviz Bridge and the southern Triviz roundabout should follow the NMSU gateway theme. A connection to the historic NMSU Miller Gates should also be included in the NMSU gateway theme art concepts.
  • The artwork design should consider the Federal Highway Administration’s Gateway Monument Program Guidelines and NMSU’s Master Plan.

All elements of the artwork should also connect visually to the surrounding area. The themes may be interpreted symbolically or figuratively.

The selected artist will be expected to attend all meetings for the design and approvals process.  If the selected artist is a minor, an adult must be present at all meetings.  There will be an estimated three meetings required with additional meetings as necessary.  The artist will be responsible for all material costs for this process through the design phase and will work with the consultant on the project to integrate the approved imagery into the plan set.

This request for qualifications is open to all artists or artist teams that are legal residents of New Mexico.  Artists submitting qualifications should demonstrate a level of experience and professionalism that is commensurate with the scope and budget.

Approximately $17,000 is available for the bridge art project.  This amount includes all fees and expenses associated with the project including travel expenses and New Mexico gross receipts tax.

The LSC is made up of representatives from the City of Las Cruces, NMSU, NMDOT, and local arts community.  Under the guidance of the NMDOT, this group of individuals is responsible for prospectus development, submission review, finalist selection, and ultimately selecting the artist or artist team to be awarded the commission.

The selection criteria shall include, but are not limited to:

  • The qualifications of the artist(s) as demonstrated by the supporting materials.
  • Proven ability to undertake the bridge art project of the described scope.
  • Attractiveness and potential of artwork design to enhance the project.
  • Artistic merit and superior caliber of craftsmanship shown by the images.
  • The degree to which the artwork fits within the context of Las Cruces.
  • The artwork design’s uniqueness and presentation of a distinctive visual image.
  • The use of themes that align with the public’s preferences and include the following: native and agricultural plants from the region and a dual gateway concept, split between NMSU and the City of Las Cruces, as described above.
  • Legal resident of New Mexico.

Up to five finalists will be invited to submit a formal proposal for the project.  An honorarium of $500 will be awarded to each finalist for submitting a proposal and attending the selection meeting to present concepts to the LSC.  The selected artist (or artist team) will also present their artwork proposal at a public meeting.  All maquettes (mini models), samples, and written proposals will become the property of NMDOT.  The selected artist will be required to enter into a contractual agreement with the engineering consultant (Molzen Corbin and Associates).

Please read the following information carefully as incomplete or late submissions will not be accepted:

  1. The artist will post on the CallForEntry (CaFÉ) website 3 to 10 images of previously completed work.  Please review and adhere to the CaFÉ website instructions and requirements (see this link:  Tutorials can be downloaded using the links near the bottom of the web page.
  2. The submission on CaFÉ must include a written letter of interest that addresses the needs of the bridge art project, the artist’s interest and motivation in preparing artwork for the project, and an outline of the artist’s specific professional qualifications.
  3. The submission on CaFÉ must include a current chronological resume or curriculum vitae demonstrating relevant work experience, particularly public art or privately funded commission projects.  Please note that a biograph or autobiography will not fulfill the requirement of a current resume.
  4. The submission will include an annotated image list containing the title, media, dimensions, year of completion, project description, budget, and commissioning agency.
  5. All materials must be submitted in digital format according to the specifications outlined by CaFÉ.
  6. Please note that by default, CaFÉ will organize the images in your submission alphabetically.  If you wish to present the images to the committee in a different order you must prioritize the images before submitting the application.
  7. The LSC will not review supplemental information beyond what is requested, including materials specific to this project.
  8. Failure to provide any of the published requirements will result in disqualification from the competition.
  9. The initial submission consists of only the artist’s general qualifications and experience on projects of similar scope and intent. The initial submission should not be a site-specific concept.  Semi-finalists will be expected to submit a sample drawing or rendering relevant to the bridge art project.

The following are key dates in the selection process:

  • December 2017 – Request for submissions posted on Café website.
  • January 22, 2018 12:00 pm – Electronic Submission Deadline.
  • February 2018 – Electronic Notification of Finalists.
  • March 2018 – Finalist Presentations, Commission awarded.
  • April 2018 – Interim reviews, public meeting, and final artwork due
  • May 2018 – Artwork scans completed and delivered to NMDOT in specific form.

Questions regarding the bridge art project should be directed to John Taschek by phone at (505) 980-0993 or by email at

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