Art on the Tideway: Open Call for Permanent Integrated Art Commissions for Deptford

Art on the Tideway will reposition the tidal River Thames as a new cultural venue. A bold world- class art programme created with local communities and stakeholders will celebrate the achievements of the Thames Tideway Tunnel through the presentation of site responsive artworks and projects.

The Thames Tideway Tunnel

London has outgrown its sewerage system. The capacities originally allowed for in the sewer network designed by Sir Joseph Bazalgette in the 1850s have been extended and now exceeded. The Thames Tideway Tunnel (scheduled for completion in 2022) will upgrade London’s sewerage system to cope with the demands of the city well into the 22nd century. (see http://www.tideway.london/)

Public Art Strategy

An ambitious commissioning programme is being developed to identify opportunities for artists to respond to the project. The approach to the Public Art Strategy is informed by the repositioning of the River Thames and the overarching vision to reconnect London, and Londoners, with the River Thames.  In the early 19th century, as industry grew along with the associated pollution, Londoners turned their backs on the Thames, which until then was the city’s focal point. Today we are turning back to face the river.

The ambition is as follows:
Art on the Tideway will reposition the tidal River Thames as a new cultural venue. A bold world- class art programme created with local communities and stakeholders will celebrate the achievements of the Thames Tideway Tunnel through the presentation of site responsive artworks and projects. Exploring heritage and looking to the future, artists will animate new public spaces and create neighbourhood interventions to surprise, delight and inspire diverse audiences.

As part of this Strategy, would like to commission an artist to collaborate on the design of the public realm and an associated integrated commission or series of commissions for the site at Deptford Church Street, London. The successful commission should express the transformational importance of the Thames Tideway Tunnel for London and its relationship with the river and to enhance the high quality public spaces and experience of the river for Londoners and visitors.

The commissions & role of the artist

The commissions 

Deptford Church Street is located in London Borough of Lewisham. The site is a public open space in central Deptford. The site is located between Deptford High Street and Deptford Church Street, next to St Paul’s Church.

The project will enhance an existing public open space adjacent to St Paul’s Church in the centre of Deptford.

Key objectives of the public art programme and central to this commission will be to:

> Enhance the high quality public spaces and experience of the river for Londoners and visitors

> Stimulate a new sense of pride in and new perception of the tidal River Thames and the wealth of opportunities that it provides

Proposals and designs are expected to engage audiences in different ways; creating pleasure, celebrating people or places, being provocative, engaging audiences in new ways of experiencing or thinking about a place. Specifically responding to Tideway’s Heritage Interpretation Strategy.

We welcome applications from artists working in all disciplines, though given the nature of commissions we require prior experience of working at scale and in three dimensions. We especially encourage applications from artists who are based in London Borough of Lewisham or with a good knowledge of the Deptford area.

Role of the artist

The successful artist will work collaboratively to develop integrated artworks for the foreshore site, both with the design team and potentially the local community. The commission/s will be developed by the artist working in discussion and collaboration with the Main Works Contractor for the eastern section of the Tunnel (CVB JV) and their design team, and Tideway (the client) with support from Tideway’s Public Art Consultants as agreed.

The artist’s brief is intended to create opportunities for genuine innovation and dialogue between the artist and the design and engineering teams to achieve a contemporary appearance and experience of the public realm, whilst drawing on its past heritage and existing setting, as well as the general experience of the river context.

The successful artist will work collaboratively with the design and engineering teams to develop detailed proposals for the commissions and oversee the fabrication and installation at a later date. The successful artist’s approach could be varied across the space and focus on one area or across the whole space. It could include specific sculptural interventions within the landscape and/or closer collaborations with the design team on materials, finishes, pattern or text. Opportunities include seating and other formal landscape elements; animating the open space or the creation of sculptural elements.

It should be noted that the successful artist will need to be available to start work as soon as possible and that there will be two stages to the commission, the design development stage now, followed by the fabrication and installation stage but at a much later date.

Artist’s fee

The successful artist’s fee for this commission is £47,000 + VAT to cover all expenses, materials and costs, visualisation of the artwork, preparation of any digital files and overseeing production, fabrication and installation and all other artist’s expenses. Included within this fee the successful artist is required to participate in one public engagement activity and a launch event with associated press activity.

See document below for further details and how to apply.

DEADLINE: midday on Sunday 02 April 2017:

Date: 
09/03/2017 - 02/04/2017
Attachments: 
Contact Name: 
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Contact Email: 
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