SCULPTURE IN THE CITY - Tenth Edition

Deadline: 29/09/2019  |  Published: 13/08/2019  |  Venue: City of London (public realm)  |  City: London  |  Region: London  |  Country: United Kingdom  |  Maria Marro-Perera

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Sculpture in the City is an award-winning urban sculpture park which launches in June. A cultural initiative delivered by the City of London in partnership with 13 local businesses, it is sited in the EC3 (insurance district) area of the City, around the iconic towers of the Gherkin, the Cheesegrater, Lloyd’s building as well as inside Leadenhall Market. The call for submissions for the tenth edition of Sculpture in the City is now open for preexisting works that can be exhibited outdoors from May 2020 to May 2021. The deadline for applications has now been extended to Sunday 29th September, due to the interest the call has attracted.

The works submitted for consideration need to be suitable for outdoor display and available for display May 2020 to May 2021.  

Deadline for submissions has been extended to Sunday 29th September 2019.

‘Art in a corporate setting has a bad rep. Show me a bank reception and I will show you a daffy, nondescript bronze selected mainly for being studiously uncontroversial. Sculpture in the City, however, is a different affair. Returning for its ninth edition, this large-scale open-air exhibition transforms the Square Mile into a giant sculpture park. And the best bit is that the art on show is genuinely worth seeing. […] All 21 works are a pleasingly disruptive addition to the slick City landscape.’  Rosemary Waugh, Time Out 

Background

Sculpture in the City is an award-winning urban sculpture park which launches every year in June. A cultural initiative delivered by the City of London in partnership with 13 local businesses, it is sited in the EC3 (insurance district) area of the City, around the iconic towers of the Gherkin, the Cheesegrater, Lloyd’s building as well as inside Leadenhall Market.

The aim of the project is to use the Square Mile as a contemporary urban gallery space and showcase cutting edge art in an area represented by the iconic contemporary towers as well as the layers of history nestled amongst these tall buildings. The project establishes a dialogue between contemporary art and contemporary architecture.

Sculpture in the City offers a unique opportunity for City workers and the local community to experience contemporary art and engage with their local environment in the context of the working day.

Since the launch of the project in June 2011, the project has grown significantly in size and scope. The current, ninth, edition of Sculpture in the City is showcasing 19 artists in 21 locations and is on show until April 2020. To date the project has shown 112 artworks, by 94 artists from 29 countries.

The current exhibition has achieved extensive press coverage, https://www.sculptureinthecity.org.uk/press/, with a successful campaign led by Brunswick Arts, including Time Out London, The Times, Evening Standard, The Londonist and City Matters.

A film review of Sculpture in the City’s ninth edition can be viewed here https://youtu.be/41yKtuqprvA 

A dedicated website https://www.sculptureinthecity.org.uk/ was launched in June 2018 featuring images and information about all the artworks to date as well as a downloadable map of the current edition. 

‘With works juxtaposed against the tall buildings in the Square Mile, this open-air exhibition not only enriches the workday experience of City workers but draws cultural visitors into this most ancient part of the City’ Paul Robinson, Artlyst


Requirements

The artwork submitted needs to be suitable for exhibiting outdoors in a busy urban environment and available from May 2020 to May 2021.  

The proposed artworks need to be pre-existing as the project does not normally commission new works.

The artworks exhibited are primarily 3D. We have shown works in a broad variety of materials from marble, stone and metal to neon and light pieces as well as mixed media that may include fabric, ceramic and other contemporary materials. The works may be free-standing or may be shown suspended; for example hung in Leadenhall Market or in a tree, or fixed to a wall.  

However, we also encourage the submission of non 3D art. This could be time-based art, be it sound, film, digital or other media work. We have shown sound work in previous editions as well as film work which in the current edition is shown on the largest ceiling-mounted LED screen in Europe at ca. 180 sq feet at 10 Fenchurch Avenue.

We are also committed to including performance-related artworks. For the past two years, Sculpture in the City has been the associate programme partner to Whitechapel Gallery’s Nocturnal Creatures, a contemporary arts festival that brings together artist performances, music, films, talks and culinary experiences in the heart of the East End, especially the area between Whitechapel Gallery, Leadenhall Market and Liverpool Street. As part of the 2019 programme, Sculpture in the City commissioned ‘On Air’ a broadcast work by Graeme Miller and a social sculpture ‘Notice Me (LGBTQIA+ Walk)’ by Guillaume Vandame.

The exhibition does not have a specific set theme and artworks are selected based on their own merit and their suitability (in terms of material, scale and style) to the urban context.

The Arts Advisory Group is sensitive to the current cultural concerns as well as the wider social and political context in which the exhibition is shown. There is a desire from the Arts Advisory Group to address issues including gender and equality issues, freedom, democracy and representation, belonging and climate concerns.

The project is sited in the public realm and seen by close to 500,000 visitors every year.

There are many potential sites in the area of varying size and conditions. The scale of the surrounding tall buildings calls for large scale works which have been shown very successfully to date. The prevalence of shiny monochrome buildings provide an ideal context for bold colour work. In addition, there are sites, such as the churchyards, which make ideal sites for smaller works. Over the years we have also hung works in Leadenhall Market, in trees, in alleyways, across lampposts, on the Lloyd’s building and on the Cheesegrater. The scope of the project, and the urban context, allows for sculpture to be showcased in the most contemporary fashion.

Weight and installation ease are often a defining factor as not many of the spaces have large weight loading capacity and in some cases sites identified prove inaccessible. 

Artists shown to date include:

2011: Anish Kapoor, Julian Opie, Franz West, Kenneth Armitage

2012: Tracey Emin, Angus Fairhurst, Thomas Houseago, Michael Craig-Martin, Yayoi Kusama, Dan Graham

2013: Ryan Gander, Chapman Brothers, Robert Indiana, Antony Gormley, Keith Coventry, Petroc Sesti, Jim Lambie, Richard Wentworth, Shirazeh Housiary 

2014: Cerith Wyn-Evans, Jim Lambie, Richard Wentworth, Nigel Hall, Peter Randall-Page, Joao Onofre, Lynn Chadwick, Ben Long, Julian Wild, Paul Hosking

2015: Kris Martin, Laura Ford, Adam Chodzko, Folkert de Jong, Xavier Vielhan, Sigalit Landau, Ekkehard Altenburger, Tomoaki Suzuki, Keita Miyazaki, Ai Weiwei, Damien Hirst, Bruce Beasley, Shan Hur

2016: Anthony Caro, Gavin Turk, William Kentridge & Gerhard Marx, Lizi Sanchez, Ugo Rondinone, Recycle Group, Jurgen Partenheimer, Huma Bhabha, Petroc Sesti, Michael Lyons, Benedetto Pietromarchi, Enrico David, Jaume Plensa, Mat Collishaw, Sarah Lucas and Giuseppe Penone. 

2017: Daniel Buren, Fernando Casasempere, Martin Creed, Ryan Gander, Damien Hirst, Kevin Killen, Paul McCarthy, Nathaniel Rackowe, Peter Randall-Page RA, Recycle Group, Bosco Sodi, Karen Tang, Gavin Turk, Mhairi Vari, Mark Wallinger and Gary Webb.

2018: Marina Abramović, David Annesley, Shaun C Badham, Miroslaw Balka, Jyll Bradley, Tracey Emin CBE RA, Clare Jarrett, Juliana Cerqueira Leite, Gabriel Lester, Sarah Lucas, Amanda Lwin, Jean-Luc Moulène, Michail Pirgelis, Thomas J Price, Richard Rome, Nancy Rubins, Sean Scully RA, Do Ho Suh and Karen Tang. 

2019: Salvatore Arancio, Reza Aramesh, Elisa Artesero, Shaun C Badham, Jyll Bradley, Nathan Coley, Marisa Ferreira, Leo Fitzmaurice, Kevin Francis Gray, Clare Jarrett, Juliana Cerqueira Leite, Michael Lyons, Nancy Rubins, Nina Saunders, Jennifer Steinkamp, Do Ho Suh, Jonathan Trayte (Autumn 2019), Patrick Tuttofuoco and Lawrence Weiner.

Selection Process

Works submitted are shortlisted for consideration by the Arts Advisory Group: Jane Alison, Barbican Art Centre; Iwona Blazwick OBE, Director, Whitechapel Gallery; Robert Hiscox, Arts Patron; Whitney Hintz, Hiscox Curator; Wendy Fisher, Collector and Philanthropist; Stephen Feeke, Curator and Writer; Andrea Schlieker, Tate Britain; Gavin Turk, artist who exhibited in Sculpture in the City in 2017.

The shortlist is expected to be confirmed by November 2019.

Following shortlisting by the Arts Advisory Group each artist and/or gallerist is invited for a site visit to identify which site(s) in the area are most suitable for showcasing the selected work.

When all shortlisted artwork sites have been identified the project team liaises with the landowners to obtain their approval for particular artworks to be shown on their land. The project team also takes care of health and safety, planning, engineering and installation requirements, and any other legal requirements the project needs to comply with.

We aim to confirm the final installation list in April 2020 and will be installing works in May/June 2020 with the official project launch mid- June 2020 (tbc).

Conditions of participation

The works are on loan at no fee for 12 months (May 2020-May 2021). The artworks must be suitable for outdoor display in the public realm for the entire period of display. The selected works will be subject to a loan agreement with the City of London Corporation.

Sculpture in the City covers shipping within the UK, installation, insurance and maintenance costs. Please note shipping from outside the UK will be considered but not guaranteed.

Sculpture in the City works exclusively with MTEC who ship and install all the artworks. 

All artists and galleries participating receive full credit on all marketing and press material and are invited to the official Launch event and other associated events.

How to submit work for consideration 

Submissions have to be made online via CuratorSpace and should include, among other elements, photos, bio of the artist, information about the work proposed (inc. dimensions, weight and media) as well as confirmation that the work can be installed outdoors and an estimated cost of installation and crate storage.

We encourage artists considering submitting work to visit the current exhibition to experience the project’s dynamic urban context, as well as looking at past editions on the website.

 

Make a submission Contact the curator
Who is eligible for this opportunity?
Artists with a pre-existing artwork that is suitable for outdoor display in a busy urban environment and available for display from May 2020 to May 2021.
When is the deadline?
29th September 2019
How many works can I submit?
There is no limit but a separate application has to be made for each single artwork.
When is the delivery date?
We expect to be able to take delivery of the work in May 2020.
When do I need to collect my work?
We expect to be able to return the work in May 2021.
How much does it cost?
There is no cost to make a submission
Are there payments to artists?
No
Is there a private view / opening?
Yes. There is an launch party in June 2020 to which all participating artists are invited.

There are also many tours of the sculpture park organised throughout the year, some as part of London-wide initiatives including the London Festival of Architecture and Open House London.

As part of both the eighth and ninth editions of Sculpture in the City has been the associate programme partner to 'Nocturnal Creatures' a late night art festival organised by Whitechapel Gallery that attracted in the region of 6-8,000 visitors to the area each time. Sculpture in the City artists were offered the (paid) opportunity to participate and create an event / performance for the evening.
What are the exhibition opening hours?
24/7 as it is an outdoor sculpture park in the public domain.
Does the location have disabled access?
As this is an outdoor sculpture park, most locations have disable access but we recommend verifying each site before visiting.
What publicity will be provided as part of the opportunity?
The current exhibition achieved extensive press coverage with a successful campaign led by Brunswick Arts, including Time Out, Londonist, Telegraph, FT, Evening Standard, Artlyst, City AM, Dezeen as well as many online publications. We expect similarly good results for the tenth edition.
Do I need to be present?
Artists selected by the Arts Advisory Group are invited for a site visit to to identify which site(s) are most suitable for showcasing the particular work. Artists are also invited to the launch party in June, as well as to participate any press opportunities that may arise. For the past two years the artists have also been offered the opportunity to participate in Nocturnal Creatures, Whitechapel Gallery's annual free late night contemporary art festival that takes place in July.
Where will my venue be listed?
On the dedicated website https://www.sculptureinthecity.org.uk/ as well as the printed brochure
How do you decide on proposals?
Works submitted are shortlisted for consideration by the Arts Advisory Group: Jane Alison, Barbican Art Centre; Iwona Blazwick OBE, Director, Whitechapel Gallery; Robert Hiscox, Arts Patron; Whitney Hintz, Hiscox Curator; Wendy Fisher, Collector and Philanthropist; Stephen Feeke, Curator and Writer; Andrea Schlieker, Tate Britain; Gavin Turk, artist who exhibited in Sculpture in the City in 2017.
 
Following shortlisting by the Arts Advisory Group each artist / gallerist is invited for a site visit to identify which site(s) are most suitable for showcasing the particular work.

When the shortlist has been collated with chosen sites the project team liaises with the landowners to obtain approval. The project team also takes care of health and safety, planning, engineering and installation requirements, and any other legal requirements the project needs to comply with. 
 
We aim to confirm the final installation list in April 2020 and will be installing works in May/June 2020.
What happens if my proposal is chosen?
Artists selected by the Arts Advisory Group are invited for a site visit to to identify which site(s) are most suitable for showcasing the particular work.
What kind of proposals are you looking for?
The aim of the project is to use the Square Mile as a contemporary urban gallery space and showcase cutting edge art in an area represented by the iconic contemporary towers as well as the layers of history nestled amongst these tall buildings. The project establishes a dialogue between contemporary art and contemporary architecture.

Sculpture in the City offers a unique opportunity for City workers and the local community to experience contemporary art and engage with their local environment in the context of the working day.

Since the launch of the project in June 2011, the project has grown significantly in size and scope. The current, ninth, edition of Sculpture in the City is showcasing 19 artists in 21 locations and is on show until April 2020. To date the project has shown 112 artworks, by 94 artists from 29 countries.

The artworks shown to date are predominantly large sculptures, with the tallest being Ai Weiwei’s Forever at 10m tall. Scale and colour can also be factors which work particularly well sited next to the towers of 30 storeys plus, with the Cheesegrater at 56 storeys tall.

As part of the eighth edition we successfully installed two sound works and the ninth edition features a video installation by Jennifer Steinkamp at 20 Fenchurch Street that features the largest ceiling-based LED screen in Europe. Moving forward we are keen to consider more time based works as well as digital pieces.

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