Call Detail
San Rafael Parking Public Art Project
Entry Deadline: 9/6/19
Application Closed
Work Sample Requirements
Images | Minimum:Min. 1, Maximum:Max. 3
Total Samples | Minimum:Min. 1, Maximum:Max. 3
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: Local
State: California

The City of San Rafael’s Parking Division & an anonymous Committee appointed by the Downtown San Rafael Arts District (DSRAD), announce a Call for Artists to submit digital images of public art to be temporarily installed at the parking structure entrance located on the corner of Fifth Avenue & C Street in the City of San Rafael.

The Parking Services Division believes in the importance of art and creativity, and supporting that belief, has dedicated two areas on an existing blank sign/apparatus to rotating 6-month public art installations. The selected art pieces will be printed onto 36wx 76h inch panels, and installed on the current lighted sign apparatus (in a landscaped planter) of the Fifth & C St. public parking facility (see for location information).

Artists are encouraged to submit vibrant, colored and spirited designs inspired by the local natural beauty, environment and culture of San Rafael, that which will invoke a sense of community and engage pedestrians and drivers passing by this widely-used parking facility. This is an opportunity to be the first artist (or artist team) to showcase a piece at this location. At the close of this call, up to six pieces will be chosen for up to three, 6-month installations. The goal is to feature artworks from youth artists (age 18 & under) on one side of the sign and artworks from adults (age 18+) on the other side, in each installation. 

We are interested in images created from, but not limited to, the following techniques: oil & acrylic painting, digital painting or art, watercolor, color drawings, paper art.

Background / About the City of San Rafael

The 2017 designation of Downtown San Rafael as a California Cultural Arts District, prompted the creation of this project. The inclusion of Downtown San Rafael as one of 14 designated California Arts Districts, was done so “on the basis of its cultural and artistic resources and activities being available in a concentrated area as well as the community’s cultural allure among locals, visitors and entrepreneurs.” The Downtown Arts District, located along the spine of Fourth Street, serves as the hub of local business and community life. It features numerous arts-related organizations and a vibrant events schedule, including the 2ndFriday Art Walk.

San Rafael, The City with a Mission, is the economic & cultural heart of Marin County. Its high quality of life is centered on its commercial districts, strong neighborhoods, and community resources. The vision of the City is to be a vibrant economic and cultural center reflective of its diversity. Across the street from the Fifth & C St. parking facility, construction is well underway of a new Public Safety Center. Fulfilling a decades-long goal, this new Center will house both our police and fire departments. This is a huge milestone, making San Rafael a safer place for our safety personnel and for the community overall. The architectural goal of the new Center is to integrate it with the City’s existing infrastructure while offering a contemporary vibe. The proximity of the public art installation to the new facility could be taken into consideration.

To Qualify: Artists living in San Rafael, California only. All ages welcome.
All work must be original and produced directly by the artist.

Entry Fee: no cost to apply

Project Budget: A one-time stipend of $500 will be awarded to each chosen artist. Both the print work and the installation costs will be paid by the City and not by the artist.

Selection Process and Criteria

The Art Selection Committee is comprised of members representing the City of San Rafael and the Downtown San Rafael Arts District (DSRAD). The Art Selection Committee is responsible for submission review, recommendation, and selection of the finalists.

Artists may research the project using any resource with the exception of discussion with individual members of the City of San Rafael staff, Downtown San Rafael Arts District, or the Art Selection Committee. The Art Selection Committee may only discuss rankings amongst themselves when they meet and confer to determine the finalists.

The artist selection criteria shall include, but is not limited to:

  • Aesthetic contribution to this busy downtown intersection & public parking facility
  • Reflection of the San Rafael community spirit
  • Ability to create a focal point and an appreciation of the space
  • Artistic merit, strength & vision as evidenced by the imagery
  • Suitability of submissions to the project intent
  • Artwork appropriateness for viewing by all age groups and viewing in a public space
  • Photography and black & white images will not be considered. Artwork that depicts nudity, mature content, political statements, copyrighted work, or otherwise offensive or inappropriate content will not be considered. All text must be approved.

Existing artwork submissions will be accepted. Artwork must have been completed recently, no earlier than 2015. 

Applications must include:

  • Uploaded image files: Artist(s) may submit up to three pieces of artwork for consideration. One digital image per artwork is allowed. Artwork image dimensions must be scaled down to reflect the 36"w x 76"h format. 
  • (Optional) Short statement describing your interest in the City of San Rafael Parking Structure Public Art Project and your process creating your submitted work(s).
  • (Optional) Artist Statement serving as a general introduction to your work, process and experience as an artist.


All applications must be submitted via the CaFÉ platform, Entries must be submitted on or before September 6, 2019, 5:00pm PST. Incomplete or late submissions will not be accepted. Upload requirements for image files:

Approved finalists will need to provide the image again, for print, using these parameters (this is not required for the application through CaFE):
File format
: .pdf, .ai, .eps, .jpg

Artwork Dimensions: Scaled for 36” wide x 76” tall rectangular-shaped image. Images submitted don’t need to actually be this size, but the final artwork will be displayed as such.

File Resolution: Raster art should be a minimum of 100 dpi at full scale (i.e. Photoshop); 300 dpi max

File size if vector file: 1-5 MB (.eps or .pdf)

File size if raster file: 5MB+ ok

The selection process will conclude by September 17, 2019, when applicants and finalists will be notified of the results.

If your application is accepted, you will need to sign, date and submit to the City of San Rafael an Artist’s Release and Waiver.


“The undersigned Artist hereby acknowledges and agrees that neither the City of San Rafael nor its officers, employees, agents, or volunteers shall be liable for any distortion, mutilation, modification or destruction, by accident, act of God or person, of any artwork created by Artist and displayed on public property of the City of San Rafael for and as part of the San Rafael Parking Public Art Project (the “Artwork”).   The undersigned Artist hereby waives any and all claims, arising at any time and under any circumstances, against City, its officers, agents, employees, and volunteers, arising under the federal Visual Artists Rights Act (17 U.S.C. Sections 106A and 113(d)), the California Art Preservation Act (Cal. Civil Code Sections 987 et seq.), and any other local, state, federal or international laws that convey rights of the same nature as those conveyed under 17 U.S.C. Section 106A, Cal. Civil Code Sections 987 et seq., or any other type of moral right protecting the integrity of works of art.  

The undersigned Artist further acknowledges that the digital reproduction of the Artwork will not be returned to Artist, and Artist grants to the City of San Rafael a permanent, unlimited license to use such digital reproduction to display the Artwork, including identification of the Artist where appropriate, as part of other displays and advertisements sponsored by and promoting the City of San Rafael.”

Application Requirements

Eligibility Criteria