4Culture Grants + Calls

Portable Purchase: Photographs and Works on Paper

4Culture seeks to purchase original, unframed photographs and works on paper—including drawings, paintings, prints, mixed media, and more—for the King County Public Art Collection. Acquired works will rotate throughout publicly accessible areas of county-owned facilities.

Steps to Apply

1 What is the King County Public Art Collection?

1 What is the King County Public Art Collection?

4Culture is King County, Washington’s cultural services agency, managing the 1% for Art program and maintaining the King County Public Art Collection. For over 40 years, we have been collecting outstanding works of art for county-owned buildings and open spaces.

The Collection seeks to enrich the region’s physical environment while celebrating its diverse communities. An unparalleled civic resource, it includes historically significant earthworks, site-specific and architecturally integrated art commissions, and an impressive range of portable artworks.

There are approximately 1,500 portable artworks in the Collection today. These pieces are displayed in publicly accessible areas of county buildings, including gathering spaces, entry and elevator lobbies, reception areas, meeting rooms, and resource centers. 4Culture’s professional staff responds to regular requests for artwork and manages rotations as inventory permits.

For more information about the Collection, visit our main Public Art page.

2 About the Opportunity

2 About the Opportunity

4Culture seeks to purchase original, unframed two-dimensional artworks, specifically photographs and works on paper (drawings, paintings, prints, mixed media, etc.), for the King County Public Art Collection.

Diversity within the collection is highly encouraged and a broad range of styles and approaches will be considered. Artists should submit works that incorporate color as well as themes and imagery suitable for public settings and culturally diverse audiences. Artworks that contain graphic depictions of violence, sexually explicit imagery or nudity, and religious references are extremely difficult to display and will not be accepted. For the sake of portability, submitted work may not be over 48 inches in height or width, under 14 inches in height or width, or more than 3 inches deep (unframed).

Artists wishing to be considered for this opportunity should submit up to 4 images of works available for purchase; submitted work must be reserved “on hold” until notifications go out in late July 2018. An overall budget of $150,000 has been designated for this purchase; the budget includes framing costs and Washington State sales/use tax. Please do NOT include sales tax in the purchase price of the artwork. Selected artists will be responsible for all packing expenses and shipping/delivery (insured) costs to 4Culture. Art will be purchased unframed. The purchase price of any single artwork will not exceed $3,000.

4Culture expects to deal directly with the artist; any agreement that an artist may have with their dealer or representative must be handled between the artist and the dealer. 4Culture will assume no responsibility for payment of fees or percentages to gallery dealers or other artist representatives. 4Culture reserves the right to refuse any delivered artwork whose quality or condition is deemed inconsistent with the work sample submitted in the application.

3 Are You Eligible?

3 Are You Eligible?

This opportunity is open to professional studio artists residing in the United States who have original, high-quality photographs and works on paper available for purchase.

Matriculated students as well as current 4Culture Board members, Advisory Committee members, employees, and the business partners and immediate family members of the above agency representatives are not eligible to apply.

4 How to Apply

4 How to Apply

Applicants must submit the materials below via an 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.


Artist contact information.


Two (2) page maximum artist résumé as a PDF. Text (.txt) files will also be accepted. Keep the formatting simple. Files must be less than 2MB in size.
Some suggested items to include in your artist résumé are:

    • Contact information: At the top of each page, include your name, address, phone number, email address, and web URL.
    • Education: List all academic degrees earned. Also include periods of study at schools or universities attended without completing a degree.
    • Professional experience:
      Exhibitions: List the title of the exhibition, the exhibition venue, and the city/state where the exhibition was presented. Please indicate if it was a solo, two-person, or group exhibition.
      Experience: You may also consider listing experience that is relevant to your art practice such as teaching, lectures, and artist residencies.
    • Honors and awards: List awards, grants, fellowships, or other recognitions of merit.
    • Bibliography: List books, magazines, newspapers, and catalogues that reference your work.


A written statement (up to 300 words) that expresses the intent of your work; include a description of your medium and method. Elaborate on how your work relates to the posted selection criteria.

Work Samples

Up to 4 digital images of artworks that are available for purchase and fit within the parameters of the call. Upload JPGs only; images must be 1920 pixels on the longest side, at least 72 dpi, and less than 2MB in size.

You will be required to list the title, date of completion, medium, dimensions (H x W x D), and price of each artwork. Use the narrative field to denote price.

Deadline: applications must be submitted by 5:00 pm on Monday, June 11, 2018. Do not wait until the last minute to apply!

If you have any questions about eligibility and the King County Public Art Collection, please contact Jordan Howland:
Jordan Howland

Please contact Brennan Jernigan with questions about the application process:
Brennan Jernigan

5 After You Submit

5 After You Submit

Selection Process and Criteria

A panel of three artists/art professionals and two King County representatives who are well-versed in contemporary art practice will select works for purchase directly from the digital submissions.

Artwork will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • Artistic quality as presented in the submitted images.
  • Appropriateness for inclusion in a public collection (imagery/content, long-term maintenance needs, and materials will be considered).
  • Portable scale that can be accommodated in the physical spaces designated for display of public artworks.
  • Cultural and artistic diversity.

While artists whose work is currently well represented in the Collection are eligible to apply, the panel will consider artistic diversity as one factor in the selection process.


Deadline: Monday, June 11, 2018
Selection panel and notification: July 2018
Delivery, framing and accession: August and September 2018