Horizon – Permanent Public Art Commission, City Fields, Wakefield

Deadline: 21/09/2017  |  Published: 21/08/2017  |  City: Wakefield  |  Region: West Yorkshire  |  Country: United Kingdom  |  Beam

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Beam, on behalf of Wakefield Council, is seeking to commission a new permanent site-specific artwork to be located at a key gateway to the City Fields urban extension just East of Wakefield city centre.

Artist Brief (Revised 21.08.17)

Horizon – Permanent Public Art Commission, City Fields, Wakefield


1.1           Introduction

Beam has been appointed by Wakefield Council to manage the commissioning of a permanent artwork for the new City Fields development primarily funded through Section 106 monies derived from a recent residential development.

1.2 Approach

Our approach encompasses a broad definition of public art. Public Art is a specific process and a way of engaging with art, artists, communities and public space. For the purposes of this commission public art is defined as –

The Arts Council considers public art to be works of art in any media created for and in the context of the civic realm, be it the built or natural environment.

A shortlist of artists will be invited to interview to present their response to this brief and their approach to the project. Following this, one artist will be selected to undertake concept and detailed design, fabrication and installation of the work.

1.3 Strategic Context

Wakefield is a city with ambitions to promote culture as part of its character & offer, and with a commitment to the integration of public art in new and existing developments.

Wakefield is already home to The Hepworth Wakefield and The Yorkshire Sculpture Park, both cultural destinations attracting national and international audiences as well as demonstrating a commitment to high quality cultural provision for residents and visitors; they are both part of The Yorkshire Sculpture Triangle, in connection with The Henry Moore Institute. The Wakefield District boasts a number of museums, heritage attractions and a range of arts and cultural organisations creating a diverse cultural scene.

Wakefield as a City and the City Fields area in particular, have a rich local heritage, celebrated in local museums and treasured by local people. Stanley Ferry and the waterside areas have a rich industrial and domestic heritage dating to pre-Viking times, which will be valued by and enrich the cultural programme proposed for this development.

City Fields is a large urban extension to the east of Wakefield city centre. It is identified in the Council’s Local Development Framework in the Site Specific Policies Local Plan adopted in September 2012 and is covered by a specific policy, namely Special Policy Area (SPA) 2. The overarching principle for City Fields is to deliver and create a sustainable eastern expansion of Wakefield that will deliver social, environmental and economic benefits and improve the quality of life for its local population. The City Fields site sits amongst neighbouring communities including Stanley, Eastmoor, Agbrigg, Belle Vue and Portobello.

The development of City Fields aims to deliver a wide choice of high quality homes and create a new sustainable, inclusive community. The development may also include new/ enhanced school provision, new health, retail and community facilities in a new district centre, along with outdoor leisure opportunities via the 2km water frontage, open space provision and walking and cycling links to both the city centre and surrounding areas.  City Fields will create a high-quality living environment with both easy access to the city centre and transport links, and to green, open space and leisure/outdoor activities. The City Fields Masterplan Framework 2017 can be found at the following website address: http://www.wakefield.gov.uk/Documents/planning/planning-policy/supplementary-planning-documents/city-fields-wakefield-masterplan-framework.pdf

Public art will play an integral role in attracting and engaging people with these new spaces, and Wakefield Council considers there to be a significant opportunity within this ambitious development to promote the innovative use of public art in place-making and Wakefield as a creative and engaging city.

Public art consultants Beam were appointed to develop a Public Art Plan for City Fields through a collaborative approach with key stakeholders, to be integrated into the Master Plan Framework. The Public Art Plan supports the creation of a strong, resilient and healthy community at City Fields using examples of best practice within the sector and the exploration of new and innovative approaches. The Plan is intended to guide the future provision of public art across the development and support the creation of a distinctive identity for the new community at City Fields.

City Fields Public Art Action Plan Overall Vision
Planting Seeds and Taking Root  - Our vision for this site is to use culture and arts to support the growth of a creative, healthy and integrated, engaged, resilient and caring community.

Key Objectives:
•       Growing, inspiring and integrating communities:
•       Drawing influences from the site and local area, including the natural environment and rich local heritage
•       Community engagement and participation leading to longer term/ permanent commissions

A copy of the Action plan can be downloaded here: http://www.beam.uk.net/events/public-art-at-city-fields 

Horizon is the first permanent public artwork to be commissioned for City Fields in a 20-year programme of integrating public art within a new community.As such it is an unparalleled opportunity to develop new methods of community building through arts and culture.

This commission will be sited at one of the key gateways to the development; and will be a statement piece which will set the precedent for quality, approach, and integration of the arts in cultural and everyday lives of new residents.  The longer-term plan includes two further Horizon commissions.

The Horizon commission responds to one of the Plan’s strategic themes - Pride in Place: “To build a sense of community and community ownership of this emerging place in both physical and less tangible ways.”


2.1 Vision

To create an ambitious and contemporary permanent artwork at a key gateway to City Fields that reflects the natural environment of the area with particular emphasis on key water features and the green open space beyond.The work will act as a welcome for visitors, residents and workers, as well as supporting the development of the identity of this new neighbourhood.

2.2 Objectives

·       To implement a major permanent artwork to be situated on a key northern gateway route to the development that is accessible by pedestrians and also visible from public and personal transport
·       To create an artwork which is sensitive to the local environment and nature of the site.
·       To engage local community groups and individuals though meetings, events and activities and new technologies in the co-production of the design development process
·       Support the development of City Fields’ cultural identity, diversity and sense of pride and ownership for residents and integration with neighbouring communities
·       To create opportunities to stimulate social activity / interaction
·       Support wayfinding and legibility of the development for residents, neighbouring communities, businesses and visitors
·       To create a high quality artwork which raises the profile of the site and attract new residents and businesses.
·       To lay the foundations for future quality public art interventions throughout the site utilising the key themes and objectives  of the Public Art Action plan as a guide

2.3 Expected Outcomes

·       Artwork will contribute to the developing identity of City Fields as a place.
·       Artists will engage the key community stakeholders in the design development process.
·       Artwork will act as point of reference when entering/exiting City Fields.
·       Residents, visitors and workers will be able to experience and interact with a high-quality art intervention
·       Artwork will promote the site to a wider audience.
·       Artwork will stimulate social activity
·       Artwork can act as a focal point for future community engagement
·       Artwork will lay the foundations and set the level of quality expected for future public art interventions throughout the site utilising the key themes and objectives of the Public Art Action plan as a guide
·       Artwork will be robust and require minimal management and maintenance

2.4 Deliverables
·       Concept Design proposal and presentation
·       Detailed Design proposal and presentation
·       Consultation and engagement with key stakeholders/ community
·       Public art commission delivery
·       Management and Maintenance Plan
·       Documentation report (photographic and online e.g. Artist’s Blog)
·       Attendance at project meetings during the commission process as applicable
·       Attendance at evaluation meeting on completion of the commission

2.5   Site

·       The proposed site is at one of the Northern Gateways to City Fields from Aberford Road. Please see planning application reference 13/02623/HYB at: http://www.wakefield.gov.uk/residents/planning/planning/development-management/view-or-comment-on-planning-applications-online/view-applications-online
·       The site is subject to underground searches and planning permission for the final artwork
·      Close liaison with Highways authorities and Wakefield Council planners will be essential to the sign off the detailed design for the artwork


3.1 Artist Selection
- Deadline for applications: 10am 21 September

- Shortlisted artists invited to interview: w/c 25 September

- Interviews: w/c 2 October

- Appointment of selected artist by City Fields Public Art Board: w/c  2 October

3.2 Concept Design to Project Completion
- Artist site visit: w/c 9 October

- Artist commission contract completed: w/c 30 October

Artist concept development phase (Research, Initial community engagement / consultation): w/c – 30 October - w/c 27 November

- Artist concept presentations: w/c 4 December

- Detailed Design development phase: w/c 11 December - w/c 29 January

- Detailed Design Proposal & presentation: w/c 5 February

- Preparation and submission of planning application: By 19 February

- Planning application decision 6-8 weeks: w/c 9 April

- Production / fabrication period (The length of this period will depend upon the nature of the work): w/c 23 April – w/c 2 July

- Artist fabrication and installation complete: w/c 16 July

- Artist maintenance plan complete: w/c 23 July

- Evaluation: w/c 23 July


4.1 Concept Design Stage - £1,000 plus VAT (if applicable)
A Concept Design Proposal will be developed and presented to the City Fields Public Art Board for approval.

This fee includes all initial community engagement, attendance at project meetings, research and development of Concept Design Proposal (requirements detailed below) and any other associated expenses.

Concept Design Proposals should include:
Artists will need to submit an electronic report (PDF / Power Point) including:
·       Description of design concept/ statement
·       Detail of research and community engagement
·       Scale drawings / visualisations
·       Materials
·       Dimensions
·       Installation method statement (outline indication)
·       Health & Safety and Risk assessment (installation / in-situ – outline indication)
·       Access Statement (outline indication)
·       Maintenance requirements and decommission plan as applicable (outline indication)
·       Indicative costings (including provision for contingency)
·       Artist and identified sub-contractors
·       Public Liability insurance details
4.2 Detailed Design and Implementation - Up to £44,000 plus VAT (if applicable)

A Detailed Design Proposal will be developed and presented to the City Fields Public Art Board. Following sign-off, the work will then be fabricated and installed by the Artist.

This fee includes engagement workshops, detailed design, production, materials, installation (including foundations as applicable), public works, management and maintenance plan, attendance at meetings and all other costs associated with the work / any subsidiary commissions and expenses. Detailed design requirements will be shared with the successful applicant.

4.3 The artist will be contracted with Wakefield Council. The project will be managed by Beam.

4.4 Payments to artists will be scheduled to align with specific milestones being achieved.


All relevant Wakefield Council policies and procedures will apply to this commission and any related work. All work will be subject to relevant permissions prior to implementation.


Wakefield Council’s Health & Safety and Child Protection Policy will be applied to this project as appropriate.

The artist will be required to provide evidence of Public Liability and other relevant insurances as requested by the City Fields Public Art Board.

Copyright in the designs and work will be retained by the Artist in accordance with The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988, however the Council and development partners will be able to use images of the artwork within any marketing and promotional literature.

Wakefield Council’s Equal Opportunities Policy will be applied to this commission.

Contact the curator
When is the deadline?
10am: Thursday 21 September 2017
How do you decide on proposals?
The City Fields Public Art Board will assess applications using a set criteria derived from the brief. Shortlisted applicants will then be invited to interview after which one applicant will be selected.

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