4Culture Grants + Calls

WSCC Addition: Art at Intersection of Ninth + Pike

Create site-specific artwork for a prominent intersection in downtown Seattle that helps link the existing Washington State Convention Center with its new Addition.

Steps to Apply

1 About the Project

1 About the Project

  • Project Budget: $800,000. Project budget is inclusive of artist fees, materials, fabrication, on-site installation, travel and transportation, and Washington State Sales/Use Tax. Three selected finalists will each be paid $8,000 to attend an orientation and to develop and present a design proposal.
  • Eligibility: open to professional artists and artist-led teams residing in the United States or British Columbia.
  • Application: submission of an online application is required for this opportunity.
  • Deadline: Thursday, June 21, 2018 at 4:00 pm PDT.

Note: This is one of two opportunities for WSCC Addition that we currently have available—the other is at Boren Avenue and Olive Way. If you’d like to apply for both, you must complete two applications.

Public Art 4Culture will manage this art opportunity, from artist selection through onsite installation, on behalf of the Washington State Convention Center.


The intersection of Ninth Avenue and Pike Street in downtown Seattle presents an opportunity for a large-scale artwork that can enhance the pedestrian experience and create a memorable and dynamic connection between the existing Washington State Convention Center (WSCC) and its new Addition. While this site is not part of the Addition re-development, it does offer the possibility for an artist to envision an urban “room” that creates a space of its own, while supporting other civic developments and connections. The site is an important location in the context of the city’s Pike Pine Renaissance: Act One initiative. The WSCC and this location are also adjacent to Freeway Park, a 5.2-acre masterwork designed by Lawrence Halprin and Angela Danadjieva. Freeway Park is currently undergoing a community engagement and schematic design process to envision and create improvements to connectivity, visibility, and public safety.

To build the Addition project, the WSCC requested several street and alley vacations from the city. In exchange, the project provided a package of public benefits, including three significant public artworks. This opportunity at Ninth and Pike is one of those public benefit artwork sites. All of the public benefit artwork areas are perceived as zones of experience, allowing the selected artists the broadest opportunity to define the intent, materials, and possibility of the artwork.


Pike Street creates a strong link from the WSCC to Seattle’s waterfront via Pike Place Market and Westlake. Several notable landmarks are in proximity to the site along Ninth Avenue, including the historic Paramount Theatre and the WorldMark Seattle – The Camlin. You can view the site in Google Maps.

Artwork is not limited to vertical application on the building façade. Property boundaries, pedestrian movement, and transportation mobility will be considerations, but finalists will be encouraged to think broadly about the possibilities for the art.

Site Views

Overhead map
Overhead map
View from Ninth Avenue
View from Ninth Avenue
View from Pike Street and Ninth Avenue
View from Pike Street and Ninth Avenue
View from Pike Street and Ninth Avenue
View from Pike Street and Ninth Avenue

Client Background

Washington State Convention Center
Washington State Convention Center Addition

For nearly 30 years, the WSCC has been the Northwest’s premier meetings and events facility. WSCC welcomes thousands of visitors from around the globe each year, offering industry-leading service, award-winning catering, and a comprehensive range of services for event planners, exhibitors, and guests.

Following years of study and continuing demand from convention goers who prefer to meet in Seattle, the WSCC is building an additional facility.

The existing WSCC and its new Addition are located in Seattle’s downtown core at the intersection of several distinct, urban, and rapidly evolving neighborhoods. The Addition project includes two co-development sites and will transform the equivalent of four blocks of downtown streetscape. The design of the WSCC Addition and its public art program aim to create enhanced connections with the surrounding neighborhoods and promote a unique experience that embodies the essence of the Pacific Northwest.

2 Timeline

2 Timeline

Timeline for Selection

Deadline for entry: Thursday, June 21, 2018, 4:00 pm PDT
Selection panel meeting: Friday, July 20, 2018
Finalist notification: Monday, July 23, 2018
Finalist orientation: Wednesday, August 8 and Thursday, August 9, 2018*
Proposal presentation: Friday, October 19, 2018*
Final design and reviews: November 2018 to June 2019

*You should be available in this timeframe in order to participate in an in-person orientation and proposal presentation if selected as a finalist. Out-of-town finalists will be reimbursed for travel and lodging expenses to attend both the orientation and proposal presentation in Seattle, Washington. If applying as a team, the allowance for travel may not fully reimburse all team members. The panel reserves the right to make no selection from the submitted applications or finalists’ proposals.

3 Are You Eligible?

3 Are You Eligible?


This project is open to professional artists and artist-led teams residing in the United States and British Columbia.

WSCC and Pine Street Group employees and board members, 4Culture employees, selection panel members, WSCC Art Advisory Committee members, project personnel including design consultants, and immediate family members of all of the above are not eligible to apply.

Criteria for Selecting Finalists

Finalists will be selected on the basis of the following criteria:

  • Quality and strength of past work as demonstrated in the submitted application materials.
  • Experience with art projects of a comparable scope and scale, preferably in exterior locations with streetscape frontage and/or pedestrian interaction.
  • Command of dynamic spatial relationships and demonstrated understanding of complex sites with multiple viewing points.
  • Perceived ability and interest in creating site-specific artwork.
  • Availability to begin proposal development work immediately.

Selection Process

The artist for this commission will be selected through an open call process, with the final artwork decided on the basis of competitive proposals. A six-person selection panel will review the applications and shortlist three finalists to develop proposals. Finalists will receive an in-depth orientation so that they can fully understand the site context and scope of adjacent developments and city initiatives. The panel will reconvene to review the finalists’ proposals and select one artist for the commission.

Finalists will each receive an $8,000 stipend to attend the orientation, develop a conceptual proposal, and present the proposal to the selection panel. In addition to the proposal fee, out-of-town finalists will be reimbursed for travel and lodging costs for two trips to Seattle to participate in the orientation and proposal presentation.

All finalists will be expected to attend the orientation on August 8 and 9, 2018 and proposal presentation on October 19, 2018. These meetings will be held in Seattle, Washington.

The panel reserves the right to make no selection from the submitted applications or finalists’ proposals. The panel’s recommendations are subject to approval by the WSCC Board.

4 How to Apply

4 How to Apply

You must submit the following materials via online application. The Public Art application system is being used for this process. You may be required to create a new account. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with questions.


Your contact information.


Two-page (maximum) current professional résumé. Keep the formatting as simple as possible. PDF is preferred; text (.txt) files will also be accepted. Teams should upload one document with two-page résumés for each team member.

Statement of Interest

Write a statement (500 words or less) that addresses the selection criteria and responds to the following questions:

  • Why are you interested in this opportunity?
  • How does this opportunity relate to your past work? How might it be different?
  • How do you approach the creation of context and site-specific artwork?

Work Samples

You must submit 12 total work samples to be eligible for consideration. Artists whose primary practice includes time-based media may submit up to 5 of the 12 samples as audio or video files, with a cumulative run-time of up to 5 minutes.

  • Digital Images: submit up to 12 digital images of past artwork (no composites) that best illustrate your qualifications. If applying as a team, a maximum of 12 images may be submitted, inclusive of all team members. Images will be projected one at a time during the application material review session. Upload JPG files only (GIFs, TIFFs and other formats will not be accepted). Images must be under 2 MB in size, 1920 pixels on the longest side, and at least 72 dpi. Once uploaded, the system will automatically label the files with your last name, first initial, and a number indicating viewing order.
  • Audio/Video: Submit up to five (5) audio or video samples if these media relate to your art practice (i.e., to show kinetic artwork, gradations of light, sound or media-based art, etc.). Audio samples must be submitted via SoundCloud with the specific URL (e.g., soundcloud.com/29523) noted on the Work Sample Upload page. Video samples must be submitted via Vimeo or YouTube, with the specific URL (e.g., vimeo.com/2992575) noted on the Work Sample Upload page. All submissions must be publicly accessible; password protected files will not be accepted. Timed excerpts are preferred, but longer samples may be submitted with notation in the description field of specific start and stop time for a cumulative run time of up to 5 minutes. Please include the start and stop times for excerpted audio/video samples at the beginning of the descriptive text.

All applicants will be required to list the title, date of completion, medium, and dimensions/duration along with a brief description of 75 words or less for each work sample. Applicants are encouraged to fill out the optional fields that include commissioning entity, budget, project partners, photo credit, and copyright owner.

After your first work sample entry, the text fields will automatically populate with information from the previous work sample upload. This is meant to help expedite the inclusion of multiple work samples per artwork/project and can be easily changed by highlighting and typing over the text. All work samples and descriptive text can be reviewed, edited, or deleted by clicking on the file name in the left hand progress navigation. Work samples can be reordered if needed when the application preview step is reached.

5 Help

5 Help


If you have questions or concerns, please contact:

For project-related questions:
Cath Brunner

For online application questions:
Brennan Jernigan

Download a PDF of this call.