RFP: Public Mural - South Main Underpass at Central Station

The Downtown Memphis Commission (DMC) has partnered with the South End Improvement Alliance (SEA) to make improvements to the railroad underpass and trestle along G.E. Patterson Avenue, in the block between South Main Street and South Front Street. This underpass is located at a strategic position in the heart of the South Main neighborhood, adjacent to the Central Station redevelopment and future Downtown Malco Theatre. An investment in lighting, signage, and public art at this location has the potential to transform the underpass into a neighborhood asset.
As part of the scope of work, the DMC will hire an artist to design and install a high-quality public art mural at the railroad trestle. The total art budget is $15,000, including all materials, labor, and artist fee.
The selected proposal must include a mural in the six (6) recessed panels along the northern concrete retaining wall and should also include painting the nine (9) vertical columns supporting the trestle. See Appendix A for a depiction of the area where the mural will be located.

Project Goals:

  • The mural should be vibrant, colorful, and visually interesting.
  • Artists are strongly encouraged to consider mural themes that reflect the rich history, diversity, and character of music in Downtown Memphis.
  • The mural must be completed by December 1, 2017.
  • Mural design should be low-maintenance and include an anti-graffiti coating.

Application Guidelines:

  • Any artist (or team of artists) with public art and mural experience may submit a proposal.
  • A written proposal is required for each submission. The proposal should include:
  1. Artist statement
  2. Design illustration of the proposed mural
  3. List all materials and equipment to be used (Please use an itemized budget format)
  4. Project timeline
  5. Identify portions of the project to be sub-contracted (if any).
  6. Include full contact information for the artist(s) involved in the project.
  7. Please include a resume and 2-3 examples of your work.
  • A design illustration showing the proposed mural is required for each submission. The design illustration must be a realistic depiction of the finished mural. Scale, color, content, technique, texture, and any other pertinent details should be conveyed in the illustration.
  • An itemized budget is required for each submission. The total art budget is not to exceed $15,000 for an artist or team of collaborative artists. The budget should include the artist(s) fee, supplies, materials, equipment, travel-related expenses, insurance, and all other associated costs.
  • Include a resume and 2-3 examples of previously completed work. Examples of previous work should list the dimensions, materials, location, client, and budget of each piece.
  • All components of the application must be submitted in digital format. Please compile the written proposal, budget, design illustration, resume, and examples of previous work into a single PDF document. Send the application materials via email to Brett Roler at roler [at] downtownmemphis [dot] com
  • The application deadline is Monday, October 2, 2017 by 9:00 AM
  • Artist(s) are allowed to submit more than one proposal, if desired. Each application must be submitted separately and contain all of the required information.
  • The DMC reserves the right to not select any of the proposals received as a result of this RFP. Project is contingent upon property owner approval and availability of funding.

Project Timeline

  • RFP published: August 18, 2017
  • Application deadline: October 2, 2017 by 9:00 AM
  • Artist selected & given notice to proceed: October 16, 2017
  • Mural completed: No later than December 1, 2017

Questions? Contact:
Brett Roler, Vice President of Planning & Development
Downtown Memphis Commission
roler [at] downtownmemphis [dot] com
(901) 575-0574

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