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Transformative Public Art Program

We commission several murals and temporary projects every year as part of the Transformative Public Art Program.

We're currently accepting proposals for the second round of the Transformative Public Art Program. The deadline to apply is May 13, 2020.

Propose a Project

About the program

Year One

In 2019, we released a call to artists for the first round of the program. We were particularly interested in murals and temporary projects with:

  • social practice
  • participatory artmaking, or
  • educational programming that celebrates the diversity of Boston.

We funded seven projects: 

Nick Cave with Now + There

Received $20,000 for the multimedia public art project "Augment".

Rob 'Problak' Gibbs 

Received $15,000 to create a mural in Roxbury.

Victor 'Marka27' Quiñonez with Street Theory Gallery 

Received $15,000 to create a mural in Newmarket.

Brian Beyung with the Chinese Historical Society of New England

Received $10,000 to create a mural in Chinatown. 

Samantha Fields

Received $5,000 for "desires not even our own", a performative project in Downtown Crossing.

MASARY Studios 

Received $5,000 to create "Water's Edge", a live music and projection piece in East Boston.

Levi Bedall with Pneuhaus 

Received $5,000 to create a sculpture project in the Back Bay.

Year Two

We released a call to artists for the second round of the program in April 2020. This year, we are looking for artworks that respond to COVID-19 and provide creative approaches to public connections and community rituals at a time of disorientation and insecurity. We will support projects that are ready to be implemented now. We will also support the research and development of future projects.

Proposals can include:

  • New media, including web-based projects, online comics, and virtual reality 
  • Traditional media, including murals 
  • Interior installations or performances visible or audible (or both) to passersby or neighbors
  • Community-engaged cultural practices
  • Social practice, including rituals related to joy, grief, and other human experiences
  • Elements that specifically engage youth or reach non-English speaking communities (or both)

The deadline to apply for the 2020 call to artists is May 13, 2020

Propose a Project

Other temporary public art projects

We commissioned five temporary art projects in Grove Hall in 2017. These projects were part of a City-led initiative to improve the streetscape. We wanted to create an environment that is safe, convenient, and comfortable for pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists. The projects included: 

  • An interactive Affirmation Station by Chanel Thervil. It was designed to uplift people by gifting them with an affirmation pin to serve as a reminder of hope and positivity.
  • A mural entitled "Afro Futurism/ Breathe Life" by Rob "Problak" Gibbs at 324 Blue Hill Ave.
  • A series of banners entitled "On the Shoulders of Giants" by Laurence Pierce at the Grove Hall Branch of the Boston Public Library.
  • A mural entitled "Powerful Knowledge" by David "DonRimx" Sepulveda at 41 Geneva Ave.
  • A mural entitled "Love Thyself" by Victor "Marka27" Quiñonez on Quincy St. 

"Afro Futurism/Breathe Life" by Rob "Problak" Gibbs
"Afro Futurism/Breathe Life" by Rob "Problak" Gibbs, photo courtesy of Chris Gaines

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