Request for Qualifications: Public Art Installations, Etobicoke Civic Centre

Civic Square: Rendering courtesy Henning Larsen / Adamson & Associate Architects

Request for Qualifications
Call to Artists
The Etobicoke Civic Centre Public Art

RELEASE: June 7, 2022
CLOSING: July 7, 2022

1. ETOBICOKE CIVIC CENTRE: INTRODUCTION

The Etobicoke Civic Centre (ECC) is a new civic centre in the former suburb of Etobicoke located on a 13.8 acre property bounded by Kipling Avenue to the west, Bloor and Dundas Streets to the north and the TTC/CPR rail corridor to the southeast. The ECC is situated on the Ancestral territory and gathering place of the Anishnaabe, the Haudenosaunee, the Tionontati (Petun), the Wendat, and the treaty territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit.

Locally known as the Westwood Theatre Lands and “spaghetti junction,” the notoriously complicated “Six Point Interchange” where Kipling Avenue, Bloor Street and Dundas Street intersect is currently undergoing a major reconfiguration. Situated at the heart of the new community being built, the ECC will replace the existing municipal buildings at 399 The West Mall and incorporate a new civic hub and a civic square.

Following an international competition, design of the civic centre was awarded to internationally acclaimed architect, Henning Larsen and Adamson and Associate Architects and PMA Landscape Architects (the “Design Team”). Completion is expected for the winter of 2027/2028.

Four public art commissions are in design development having been awarded to Indigenous artists.

Conceived as an “integrated civic hub” this mixed-use development will feature municipal offices, a Council Chamber, civic offices and a citizen services centre, multi-purpose meeting rooms, a daycare centre, a community recreation centre with a pool and running track, a Toronto Public Library District Branch, an art gallery, and a large outdoor civic square surrounded by ample new sustainable landscaping. CreateTO, in collaboration with the City of Toronto’s Economic Development and Culture division and the Indigenous Affairs Office initiated the Public Art Program as an integral component in the design and development of the new ECC. The project is now being implemented by Corporate Real Estate Management of the City of Toronto, with the assistance of advisors Karen Mills and Rebecca Baird.

2. INVITATION: PUBLIC ART OPPORTUNITY

The City of Toronto is committed to reflecting the diversity of all Canadians and especially the residents of Etobicoke, in this public art program. Our goal is to strengthen the connection between public art and civic engagement ultimately striving to build connectedness amongst our communities.

The City’s 10-Year Public Art Strategy aims to harness the potential of public art to advance city-building priorities such as equity and inclusion, environmental resiliency, reconciliation with Indigenous communities, and place-making, among others. We welcome and encourage artists with lived experience as a member of Indigenous, Black, or racialized communities to apply for this opportunity to help contribute to the vision of public art in Toronto that is accessible and reinforces neighbourhood character.

Professional, experienced artists born or living in Canada are hereby invited to submit their qualifications as the first stage in a two-stage process to commission public art for the ECC.

Two opportunities are presented:

  1. Suspended artwork to be installed in the Atrium of the ECC
  2. Wall mounted artwork for the wall adjacent to the Library entrance.

Artists are invited to submit their credentials for the consideration of the art expert Selection Panel who will identify Finalists to advance to the second, Concept Stage. No ideas nor submission of existing works will be considered.

3. APPLICATION PROCESS

Kindly email eccpublicart@gmail.com to receive the Application Form and to be considered.

Online “How to Apply” sessions will be conducted on June 14 from 9:00 AM to 9:30 AM and June 15 from 9:00 AM to 9:30 AM. Email us for an invitation.

4. FINALISTS FOR THE OPPORTUNITY

Up to 4 pre-qualified candidates will advance as Finalists for each opportunity. The Finalists will be paid for their complete and compliant Concepts. Finalists will be provided with an Opportunity Brief prior to development of their Artwork Concepts.

5. GOALS FOR THE ARTWORK

The spectacular Atrium has been designed as a warm, active, welcoming space that reflects the character of the community and that serves as the central hub leading visitors to the wide array of services and activities provided in the ECC. The atrium will be a community gathering space: full of light and featuring a strong connection to the natural environment in terms of materials and views.

The Library will serve residents and visitors. As a hub for learning, the library will symbolize learning and personal enrichment.

The Artworks should:

  • Serve as a symbol celebrating the richness and diversity of Toronto and in particular, the Etobicoke area
  • Charm, engage the community at large and the general public by fostering connection and dialogue; it should be readable and interesting to those with art expertise and to those without art expertise
  • Serve as welcoming elements inviting exploration by visitors and staff
  • Serve as intuitive wayfinding landmarks when negotiating through the complex
  • The Artworks should be iconic, impactful, durable and require minimal maintenance

Requirements: Artworks must be integrated into their locations with attention to design and technical considerations such as weight, UV resistance, ease of maintenance, use of fire rated materials and impact on facility operations.

The Artworks must be unique. We will not consider acquiring editioned works or versions of existing works.

6. ELIGIBILITY

We are inviting interested experienced professional artists, born or living in Canada, to submit their credentials for consideration as part of the first stage of a two-stage public art process.

Proponents must be experienced professional artists with a strong history of public exhibition, a background including training as artists including equivalent informal or traditional training, and curator, community or peer recognition as artists.

Architects and designers / design studios are not being considered for this project.

To secure the Application Form please contact:
eccpublicart@gmail.com

7. KEY DATES

Closing Time for emailed RFQ Submissions is 5:00 PM EST, Thursday July 7, 2022.
Late Submissions will not be accepted.

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