Artists sought for 60ft wall painting on Livery Street in Colmore Business District

24 July 2019

Colmore BID is looking for artists to tender proposals for a vibrant new artwork to enhance a large part of Livery Street in the Business District.

The chosen artist will be paid £7,500 for the commission, to be completed in the autumn of this year. Applications must meet the theme of ‘green in the city’.

The artwork will be in place for a minimum of five years and will cover a concrete wall approximately 8ft high and 60ft wide at the entrance to Livery Street by the junction with Great Charles Street Queensway.

Located by a key entry point to the car park at Snow Hill station, it is also on the route of buses serving the city and for employees walking into the Business District from the Jewellery Quarter.

The artwork needs to be finished in a painted or spray-can medium. Proposals are invited from commercial artists, students and graduates.

In 2013, Colmore BID completed the first version of the art project to enhance the wall by displaying a design of local artist and designer George Benson. This will be covered as part of the project.

The Livery Street Wall project is one of a host of improvements in the Business District delivered by Colmore BID.

The BID is a passionate supporter of art in the District and partnered the ongoing Home of Metal Black Sabbath – 50 Years exhibition, the award-winning Phyllis Nicklin ‘Nicklin Unseen’ outdoor photography and the pioneering Thresholds project at Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, which used virtual reality headsets to celebrate Birmingham’s role in the early years of photography.

“Colmore BID is determined to improve the variety of public spaces in the District to enhance the area for visitors and workers to enjoy,” explained Mel Williams of Colmore BID.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to create something stunning for Birmingham’s street scene and to produce an artwork with impact that will be seen by thousands of people every week.

“We’re looking forward to seeing what Birmingham’s creative community can create and working with the chosen artist on a long-lasting, powerful piece of art.”

Jon Harris, integration and accessibility manager from West Midlands Railway, said: “We are proud to serve the people of Birmingham and we know vibrant artwork is always popular with our passengers. We are very pleased to work with the Colmore BID and look forward to seeing the innovative, creative ideas from our talented artists.

“Travelling by train is more popular than ever and as the number of journeys continue to rise we are always looking for new ways to improve the passenger experience, including our £1 billion investment in train services across the network.”

Are you an artist who is interested in applying?  Or do you know an artist?  Here’s what you need to know

What is the task?

Colmore BID is seeking an artist who can design and execute a piece of art to cover a 120m2 wall at the end of Livery Street.  The structure of the wall means that fixings can’t be attached, so the final artwork is likely to be paint based.  The theme for the piece is “Green in the City”; artists are encouraged to interpret the theme creatively.  The successful artist would need to be available to carry out the work in October 2019.

Who is the client?

The artist will be commissioned by Colmore BID, who deliver projects and services for local businesses.  The current painting was commissioned by Colmore BID in 2013.  We now have the opportunity to refresh the artwork to express a new theme.   We have chosen “Green in the City” to reflect the various work we do to make Birmingham a cleaner, greener, more attractive place to work.  A budget of £7,500 has been put aside for this project.

How is the artist being chosen?

Due to the size and prominent nature of the artwork, Colmore BID is carrying out a tendering process to select an artist to deliver this project.  We want to encourage proposals from a range of artists and tendering is a standard approach to choosing who to commission.  Proposals will be reviewed by a panel who will then invite a shortlist of artists to discuss their concept in greater detail.

How do I apply?

Proposals should be emailed to Mike Mounfield, or delivered to Mike by post (our address is 2nd Floor, 37a Waterloo Street, Birmingham B2 5TJ) by 5.00 pm on Friday 20 September.  Proposals can be in any format; they could be a fully completed design, but they could also be a sketch or a narrative etc.  The key thing is for the proposal to get the concept across to the judging panel.

Any additional questions?

Please contact Mike directly.