Call Detail
Congress Park Pool & Playground Public Art Project
Entry Deadline: 11/16/20
Application Closed
Work Sample Requirements
Images | Minimum:Min. 6, Maximum:Max. 6
Video | Minimum:Min. 1, Maximum:Max. 1
Total Samples | Minimum:Min. 7, Maximum:Max. 7
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: Local
State: Colorado
Event Dates: 11/17/20 - 11/25/20


 Congress Park Pool & Playground Public Art Project

Budget: $80,000 USD

Eligibility: Artists residing in the State of Colorado

 DEADLINE: Monday, November 16, 2020, 11:59 pm MST


The City of Denver's Public Art Program seeks to commission an artist or artist team for site-specific artworks at the soon-to-be renovated Congress Park Pool & Playground, located at 850 Josephine St.

 The goals of the public art commission are to create an inspiring, joyful, safe, and welcoming experience for the users of the pool, playground, and park. Artist(s) should consider how the artwork will enhance the neighborhood culture, celebrate the public space, and improve the urban playground. The Congress Park Pool & Playground Public Art Project Selection Panel is open to the possibility of tactile, interactive, and kinetic artworks.


Built in 1955, the Congress Park Swimming Pool is one of the oldest outdoor pools in the City of Denver. The rehabilitation of the swimming pool will accommodate the growing population and recreational trends and meet modern safety and maintenance standards. The project includes the design and construction of a new, state-of-the-art swimming pool, bathhouse, and pump house, including surrounding landscaping.

 The Congress Park playground project aims to replace the existing playground with a more extensive new playground that meets the community's needs for play value, accessibility, and safety. The redesigned playground will be in the same general area as the existing playground and will be coordinated with the ongoing redesign of the Congress Park Swimming Pool. Public engagement specialist will work with stakeholders and conduct public meetings specific to the playground and walk connections. The project will look at ADA accessibility related to the playground, restrooms, and tennis courts to connect accessibility routes across the site. The picnic shelter and tables will be evaluated and revised to ensure they are appropriate for the community needs and Denver Parks and Recreation summer programs.  


Congress Park is part of a central Denver neighborhood of the same name, developed as a residential area in the late 1800s. The former cemetery and City Nursery that occupied the land is now home to the popular outdoor spaces of Congress Park, the Denver Botanic Gardens, and Cheesman Park. Congress Park is a traditional city neighborhood with a small-town atmosphere, diverse cultures, ages, and economic backgrounds that share a sense of community.

 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 will 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. Finalists are encouraged to consult with a professional conservator before the submission of a final proposal. The chosen proposal will be reviewed by the City of Denver's Public Art Committee to ensure conformity with city standards of maintenance and durability, as well as ADA standards. The selected artist/team is expected to stay on budget and to complete work in an approved time frame.


This project is open to artists who currently live and work in the State of 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. The selection panel is interested in artists who can demonstrate an understanding of the area's residents, culture, and surrounding neighborhoods. Emerging artists and artists working in media that is pedestrian-scaled and suitable for outdoor display are especially encouraged to apply.

 Artwork Locations

Finalists are required to activate both sites and are encouraged to apply as teams. The selection panel is seeking artists who can demonstrate experience integrating artwork into the built environment and the surrounding landscape. The locations for the proposed artworks are:

 •             Park space located between the main entrance of the swimming pool and playground.  Please note the concrete walk currently shown in the aerial image will be removed and replaced. The commissioned artist or artist team will work with the playground design team to finalize the placement for the artwork. The artwork shall not interfere with the sports field or the playground activities; instead, it should enhance the setting.

 •             Eastern Pumphouse wall facing pool, treatment can include painting or elements that are affixed to the wall that does not infringe with safety or use of the swimming pool.

 Can a team apply?

Applicants may apply as a single artist or multi-person collaborative group. If applying as a team, please submit one résumé for the team, with one page per team member.

 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 finalists who will create site-specific proposals and be interviewed in a virtual format. Artists will be paid an honorarium for this work. Artists/teams selected as finalists will be required to submit a Diversity & Inclusiveness Form 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 guide on filling out this form. From the interview and proposal, an artist or artist team will be selected for this commission. The selected artist or artist team will collaborate with the Public Art Program staff and the Congress Park Pool & Playground design and construction team when finalizing their designs for installation.

 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 mean 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 $80,000.00 USD which will be allocated to the artist/team selected. 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.


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

Monday, November 16, 2020; 11:59 P.M. MST                    Deadline for entry (via CaFÉ™ system)

January 2021                                                                                      Finalist Selection

April 2021                                                                                            Artist Selection and Notification

 Project Selection Panel

According to Denver's Public Art Policy, the art selection panel plays an active role in the acquisition of public art for Denver. The Congress Park Pool & Playground art selection panel is comprised of 11 voting members and additional non-voting advisors. The selection panel is responsible for reviewing the site, establishing criteria for a request for qualifications, reviewing applications, selecting and interviewing finalists, and for selecting an artist or artist team for the commission. 

 Selection Process

Up to five artists or teams will be selected as finalists. Those selected will receive more specific information regarding the site and have the opportunity to meet with site representatives, the design team, and public art staff. The finalists will receive an honorarium to prepare and present the proposal in person. The selection panel will review the proposals, interview the finalists in a virtual format, and recommend an artist for the commission. The final recommendation of the selection panel will be presented to the Public Art Committee, the Denver Commission on Cultural Affairs, and the Mayor of Denver 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 ImagesTo 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 will have the opportunity to upload up to two video files.

 IMPORTANT: if submitting audio or video files, do not use them as your very first image. They must be submitted last in your image sequence.

 Instructions on how to format images to CaFÉ™ specifications can be found at Assistance in using the CaFÉ™ system is available here: If an artist does not have access to a computer, he/she may call 720-865-5575 to use a computer at the Denver Arts & Venues offices.

 Statement of InterestPlease submit a statement outlining your interest in the Congress Park Pool & Playground public art project and why it is of special interest to you (2,000 character maximum) via CaFÉ™. 

 RésuméSubmit 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 page per team member.

 Survey Applicants will also be required to fill out a short demographic survey that will be sent via the Survey Monkey website to the email on file from the CaFÉ™ application.

 References – Applicants who are selected to be finalists will be required to provide three professional references.

 Please direct all questions about the project to:

Rudi Cerri, Public Art Program Administrator,, 720-865-5562

 For more information on the Congress Park Pool, visit this website:

 For more information on about the Congres Park neighborhood, visit these sites:




Application Requirements

Eligibility Criteria