Request for proposals – two outdoor art pieces in Lakewood

The City of Lakewood is soliciting proposals from Washington State artists to provide professional design and fabrication of two art pieces to be installed at the entrance of the new “Colonial Plaza.” It is located at Gravelly Lake Drive SW and Motor Ave in Lakewood, WA 98499. Proposals must be received no later than 4:00 p.m. April 4, 2019 at the City Clerk’s Office, City of Lakewood, 6000 Main St. SW, Lakewood, WA 98499.

I.        Eligibility

Open to professional artists residing in Washington State

Photo by Morf Morford
Photo by Morf Morford

II.       Background

The City formed an Arts Commission in 2006 to promote the visual, performing and literary arts; encourage the creative contribution of local artists; make recommendations for public art to the City Council; support community-building events; and foster the City’s cultural heritage. A dedicated funding stream via the rental fees for “City” days at the McGavick Conference Center was created in 2014 to provide resources for public art.

III.      Budget

$50,000 – which includes design, fabrication and installation.

IV.     Art Opportunity


Creation and installation of two public art pieces that stand at the entrance to the new Colonial Plaza, one on each side of the road. This is a new district, slated to be completed by September 2019, that will be a community gathering place and event and retail space.


North side: 20’ x 6’

South side: 20’ x 8’

The height can possibly be higher than this.

Art “Theme”

The theme for the art has not been pre-selected. The goal of this public art project is to provide a visual entrance to the plaza. Ideally it will link to the history and/or cultural heritage of the City of Lakewood and the Colonial Center which was built in 1937 by Norton Clapp. Including a water element is highly encouraged. The City is able to provide water to this location. The artist can use their creativity to express their theme in the artwork submittal. The artist’s “theme” may be articulated through subsequent art in other locations in the city. The Art Pieces should stand vertically and have height. The material will need to stand the test of time, being outdoors, and should be vandal resistant and easy to maintain. We encourage artwork that speaks to many different cultures.


We encourage artists to learn about the Colonial Center History by visiting the Lakewood History Museum at 6211 Mt. Tacoma Drive SW (in the Lakewood Colonial Center). Check the website for hours of operation at

This information is from the historical marker at the Colonial Center on the corner of Gravelly Lake Drive & Motor Ave:

“When the Lakewood Colonial Center was built in 1937, it was known as the Lakewood Community Center and represented a new way of life for the Lakes District and the American people. It was developed on this site, a sparsely settled section of prairie land at the time, by Norton Clapp and the Lakewood Development Company.  It was the first suburban shopping center west of the Mississippi. The original Colonial Center included a theatre, grocery store, pharmacy, dental office and other shops. An additional section with 11 stores was added to the central core in 1951. The final complex with 14 more stores was added in 1955 on the north side of Gravelly Lake Drive. By 1962 there were 32 stores and services in the greater Lakewood Colonial Center.” The historical marker was dedicated in 2015.


The artist will submit anticipated installation needs for the artwork. The project engineer will work with the selected artist regarding lighting and long term maintenance needs, and coordination of the art installation.

Outdoor art welcomes visitors and can become a defining feature of a community. Photo: Morf Morford
Outdoor art welcomes visitors and can become a defining feature of a community. Photo: Morf Morford

V.      Proposal Requirements

Proposals should be prepared simply and economically, providing straightforward and concise information.

The City shall not be responsible for any costs incurred by the artist in preparing, submitting or presenting his/her response to the RFP.

Proposals shall include and be organized in the following manner:

a. Cover sheet with “2019 Colonial Plaza Artwork Proposal” at the top and your full name, email, cell number and mailing address at the bottom.

b. Letter of interest explaining submission including the ‘”theme” on which the artwork is based.

c.  The artist’s résumé.

d.  A comprehensive two- or three-dimensional composition of the art, as appropriate. Explain materials used.

e. Drawings or photographs that show the relationship of the artwork to the site and examples of previous relevant work.

f.   Installation details.

g.  Description of routine maintenance and estimate of ongoing maintenance costs.

The proposal shall be limited to 10, 8 ½” by 11”, 12 pt. font pages not including the cover.

Please submit an electronic version and five (5) hard copies of your RFP to: City of Lakewood, Office of the City Clerk, 6000 Main Street SW, Lakewood, WA 98499 no later than 4:00pm., Friday, May 1, 2019

Please contact Sally Martinez at 253.983.7758 for further information. Information and updates will be posted online at

Persons with disabilities may request this information be prepared and supplied in alternate forms by calling 253.983.7835.

VI.     Selection Process

The Lakewood Arts Commission will convene a jury to review the proposals.

Candidate jurors will include surrounding neighbors, stakeholders, professionals and city representatives. A jury will be comprised of no less than three and no more than twelve jurors. The City will not discriminate against any artist on the grounds of race, creed, color, national origin, sex, marital status, age or the presence of any sensory, mental or physical handicap.

The City of Lakewood reserves the right to waive any informalities, irregularities, or technical defect in any proposals received, to reject any or all proposals, to accept any proposal or part of a proposal which, in its judgment is most advantageous to the City. The City also reserves the right to re-advertise for new proposals in conjunction with the project.

Selection criteria will include:

Artist relevant experience

Interpretation of theme



Maintenance requirements

Installation requirements

Compatibility with the established location

Creative approach to implementing the project within the current budget

VII.    Timeline

The schedule is contingent upon the City’s project schedule and may be changed at any time

April 4, 2019      Deadline for response to RFP (by 4:00pm)

Proposals must be received at:

City Clerk’s Office

City of Lakewood

6000 Main St. SW

Lakewood, WA 98499

Mid April, 2019        Selection panel reviews RFP’s

May 1, 2019                City Council Makes Selection

Early May, 2019               Selected artist notified

September 2019              Installation on site completed

– City of Lakewood