Launch of the temporary public art program “Art in the Heart” in coordination with Pack Square Plaza Visioning: Call for artists

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Call for applications

In partnership with the Friends of Buncombe County Special Collections and the Asheville Public Art and Cultural Commission, the city is launching a new temporary public art program to activate Pack Square Plaza and engage with the community in a new way. Art in the Heart will support the production/installation of up to 10 temporary art projects and/or experiences at Pack Square Plaza, with artist stipends ranging from $500 to $1,500. The City calls on artists and creatives to apply.

Art in the Heart is now accepting applications through the following Request LINK. Interested applicants should submit their proposals by 5 p.m. on June 21, 2022. The first installation or performance could begin as early as July, with artists‘ works continuing in a coordinated or rotating fashion through the end of the year.

With the removal of the Vance Monument and the start of the Square Plaza Vision Pack and Improvements project, the square – including the site of the former Vance Monument – ​​will soon enter a new era. As part of the Art in the Heart program, artists and creatives are invited to help cultivate and facilitate critical conversations about the past, present and future of Pack Square Plaza. A range of temporary artwork may be appropriate including: traditional, non-traditional experiences and performances.

Public spaces and monuments are dynamic and should be an inclusive reflection of the people and history they represent. Therefore, artist proposals must embrace the theme of social equity and inclusion and answer the following questions:

  • What should Pack Square Plaza look like in the future?
  • What stories have not been told or represented in downtown Asheville?

Art in the Heart is a way to unite, heal and strengthen community. The goal is to use art to spark conversation and ideas on how to make Pack Square Plaza – a central gathering place and hub of activity for the region – a place that resonates with the diverse community of Asheville. The program will help inspire and inform the larger initiative underway to create a community vision for the future of this region.

For more information and to apply, go to www.ashevillenc.gov/publicart or the City’s application page: www.ashevillenc.gov/bids.

Square Plaza Visioning Pack Updates

The City of Asheville and Buncombe County continue to make progress in a broader engagement effort to document the community’s vision for the future of Pack Square Plaza and plan for its implementation.

Next to a Request for Proposals (RFP) Process launched earlier this year, the top-ranked team was selected to lead the engagement and documentation of community perspectives on the Pack Square area, and to provide advice on how the design, programming and space management can become more equitable and inclusive for all. This community engagement and collaborative planning initiative should begin in July and continue for 6-9 months. Staff will present a contract to City Council for review on June 14.

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