The City of Mesa is seeking artists or artist teams through this Request for Qualifications (RFQ) interested in participating in an exciting effort to enhance columns on the façade of the newly renovated Mesa Public Library Dobson Branch.
The intention for the Dobson Library public art project is to celebrate our vibrant city and boldly announce Mesa as a premier location for people to live, work, and visit. The public art for this opportunity should serve as a beacon to viewers communicating that Mesa is a progressive, welcoming community that places a high value on education and literacy.
One artist or artist team will be commissioned for this opportunity. Interested artists or artist teams will submit their qualifications in response to this RFQ for review by the selection committee, which will convene to review all submissions received in response to this RFQ and establish a list of finalists to create proposals for further review and consideration. No renderings or concepts are required at this time.

The City of Mesa is the third-largest city in Arizona and the 36th-largest city in the United States. The city is home to 504,258 people as of 2020 according to the Census Bureau, which makes it more populous than Minneapolis, St. Louis, or Miami. The location at Dobson Ranch Library will be a highly visible and heavily trafficked location. The Dobson Ranch neighborhood was built between 1973 and 1999 on and around the site of a homestead that was purchased from the Dobson family by the City of Mesa. The community, which is characterized by a golf course and several small man-made lakes, is one of Arizona’s first planned communities. The neighborhood features classic late 20th century charm and a vibrant atmosphere. Dobson Ranch is a beautiful sustainable community with several schools, churches and a municipal complex which includes a lakeside park, a police substation, and a fire station, as well as the Dobson Ranch Library. The public art for Dobson Ranch Library will be an exciting addition to the existing public art in the city including pieces by Ralph Helmick, Mary Lucking, and Daniel Martin Diaz.

The intention for this opportunity is to enhance five columns (12’ – 18’) of non-painted concrete located in the library building’s façade. The columns could be painted with murals, or 3D elements could be applied to the columns, such as, mosaic tile, metal, or fiberglass, or a combination of 2D and 3D elements. Lighting, kinetic, or augmented reality enhancements could also be part of this opportunity depending upon feasibility. The enhancements should make the experience of walking around the columns and entering the library exciting and alluring. Project budget for 2D-only enhancements is up to $40,000. Project budget for 2D + 3D or 3D-only is up to $70,000.

Artists/Teams selected will be compensated for their work based on a negotiated rate that considers the extent of the art and experience level of the artist/team. Budgets for each project will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis based on the estimate provided. Once selected as a finalist, artists/teams will submit an estimate for developing, fabricating, and installing their public art at the designated site. Finalists will be compensated $1000 develop one to three concepts. Each estimate provided by selected artists/teams must be all-inclusive, covering all expenses associated with the design, fabrication, and installation of the commissioned art, including design development, fabrication, execution, insurance, transportation, maintenance for the first three years after completion, and other potential costs. The estimate should also include an estimation of potential maintenance costs that may be required beyond the first three years.
The selected artist or artist team will enter into an artist services agreement with the City of Mesa for the specific project(s) to be completed. Following the execution of a services agreement with the City, which an artist/team must sign after they are selected for a project, the artist or artist team will receive 30% payment up front for their public art, 50% at halfway point, and the remaining balance of 20% once the artwork is completed in accordance with the services agreement and signed off by the City.

Artists/Teams will be required to show proof of insurance – worker’s compensation (if applicable), commercial general liability and automobile – as outlined by the City prior to the execution of the artist services agreement. Image rights will be retained by the artist or artist team with a non-exclusive use agreement granted to the City of Mesa for an unlimited term. The selected artists/teams who complete their project will receive marketing exposure in the form of the City’s social media and a promotional campaign for the library.
Commissioned artists and artist teams must attend meetings with the selection committee to discuss the overall design and timetable for the finished product. Selected artists and artist teams will be required to attend the following if they take place:
• public meetings to share designs for the public art
• unveiling event for the completed project or open house
Additionally, artists/teams selected may be listed on the city’s website, which will highlight public artworks that can be found around the City.


Organization/Company: City of Mesa - Mesa Arts Center
Location: Mesa, AZ
Deadline: April 17th, 2023
Artists or artist teams working in 2D and/or 3D are encouraged to apply. Successful applicants must demonstrate the ability to oversee the design, fabrication, and installation of 2D or 3D art—a process that may include making presentations to the public, media interviews, and attending select events. 3D-based applicants must demonstrate the technical knowledge related to best practices for fabrication, site preparation, safety requirements for installation, and durable materials for long-term maintenance. 2D-based applicants must demonstrate the technical knowledge related to best practices for designing and implementing interesting and engaging murals.
Applicants’ qualifications will be reviewed based on the below evaluation criteria. Failure to include information for any of the evaluation criteria may result in disqualification from evaluation.
RFQ evaluation criteria:
• 40% Quality of art samples
• 25% Artist/team experience with 2D and/or 3D installations as noted in bio/resume(s)
• 25% Demonstrated ability to complete projects on time and on budget as noted by completed projects and years of experience
• 10% Professional references related to public art
Artists may apply individually or as a team. If applying as a team, each team must designate a team leader who may not change after submittal of the team’s response to the RFQ or otherwise during the RFQ process; team changes after selection must be approved by the selection committee.
Artists who apply as a team must demonstrate the qualifications of individual team members as well as the team’s overall qualifications to work together on projects and prior experience working as a team.

This RFQ is open to artists and artist teams working in Arizona or a state bordering Arizona: California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, or Utah.

Please contact Kevin Vaughan-Brubaker, Mesa Arts Center, 480-644-6540 or [email protected]
NOTE: As the project is funded by the City of Mesa, the City, independently or through the selection committee, reserves the right to reject any or all submissions or any part thereof; to cancel the RFQ at any time, without notice; to re-issue the RFQ; and to waive minor irregularities, defects, or omissions in a submission. All decisions on compliance, evaluation, terms, and conditions shall be made solely at the selection committee’s discretion. Submission of artist/team qualifications does not guarantee a contract with the City nor confer any right to an award. No agreement exists between any person and the city for any material or service until an agreement is executed between the City and the artist.