Call for Artists: Parklane Park Sculptural Artworks

The Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC), in partnership with Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R), invites artists/artist teams to submit a Request for Qualifications application form (RFQ) for a series of sculptural artworks to be installed in the newly expanded and redesigned Parklane Park in the Centennial Neighborhood at 15635 SE Millmain Drive, Portland, Oregon 97233

RFQs are due by 11:59 pm, Pacific Time, April 20th, 2023

The full Request for Qualifications form can be downloaded here. Further information about the project can be accessed here.

The History and Background of Parklane Park

The site of Parklane Park was originally home to the Multnomah, Kathlamet, Clackamas, Tualatin, Kalapuya, Molalla, Chinook, and many other tribes who made their homes along the Columbia River and its tributaries.

More recently it was used as an airfield, and then as a gravel quarry which was later filled with remnant debris in the 1990s. When the surrounding subdivisions were built in the 1970s, the triangular 5-acre parcel that is now Parklane Park became a Multnomah County park. Local residents planted many of the trees and installed red-and-white striped playground equipment, which gave the park its nickname, “Candy Cane Park.”

In 1993, the park was transferred to Portland Parks & Recreation. In 2001, the City purchased an additional 20 acres to the north, the site of the former gravel quarry. The Parklane Park Master Plan was completed in 2009 and created a guide for the construction and expansion. In 2016, a Portland Loo® was installed near the playground with 2014 Parks Replacement Bond funds.

When fully developed, Parklane Park will serve 2,237 households, 407 of which do not currently have ready access to any park or natural areas. There is a significant lack of parks and open spaces and a shortage of recreation facilities in the neighborhood. Parklane will provide a valuable recreational space for the community.

Former Portland Parks & Recreation Commissioners Amanda Fritz and Commissioner Carmen Rubio both approved additional System Development Charge (SDC) funds to fully fund Parklane Parks development in light of cost increases amid the COVID-19 pandemic. These additional funds allowed for the completion of nearly all elements identified in the 2009 Master Plan, with the exception of the aquatic center.

The City of Portland’s Office of Community and Civic Life describes the Centennial Neighborhood as “a relatively large neighborhood with a diverse population.” This diverse community of Portlanders includes Black/African American, Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin speakers), European, Indigenous, Latinx, Middle Eastern, Arabic, Pacific Islander, Vietnamese, Slavic, and other communities.

Building on the work of the 2009 Master Plan, PP&R formed a Project Advisory Committee and held several community engagement sessions during the development of the design for the expanded park. You can find documentation here on the Parklane Park Project webpage.

Art Opportunity

RACC and PP&R are seeking an artist/artist team to create a series of sculptural artworks to be installed along the park’s central looping walking path. This lit concrete path is nearly a half a mile long and is a fundamental aspect of the park’s design. The path will be the primary walkway for visitors to access the park’s many amenities, including the grass soccer field, basketball courts, event pavilion, and various playgrounds. All six of the park’s pathed entries lead directly to this looping pathway. An architectural focal point of the park’s design is a large pavilion serving as both a multi-purpose covered community gathering space and a half-court basketball. Two smaller picnic shelters of similar design flank the pavilion. This area of the site boasts views of Mt. Hood on a clear day.

This is an opportunity for the artist(s) to create a set of works that viewers would experience while walking in the park, at all times of day and in all seasons. The goal for this artwork is to reflect the past, present, and future communities who have, are, or will enjoy the green spaces and amenities of Parklane Park. These artworks should aid in the creation of a sense of belonging for the park’s users. Through the use of color, image, form, pattern, and / or texture, the artwork will be able to create a sense of relationship, reliability, and contemplation for park users. This set of sculptures will be experienced individually and collectively — sited many feet apart from one another, but also appearing as a group from a distance. These works will become part of the character of Parklane Park.


This opportunity is open to artists/artist teams based in the United States. If applying as a team, at least one member must meet the residence eligibility requirement. PP&R and RACC are committed to reflecting the cultural richness of our city by promoting opportunities for historically underrepresented artists. Artists/artist teams that are not currently represented in the public art collections in Portland with a permanent artwork are strongly encouraged to apply. RACC is committed to engaging new communities of artists and expanding the range of artistic and cultural expression represented in the city’s public art collection.


The selected artist/artist team will receive $140,000 for this opportunity to create a series of sculptural artworks. This budget is inclusive of all project expenses including artist fees, design development, any permits and engineering required, materials, fabrication, installation, and third-party contractors who may help to fabricate and/or install the artwork. In addition, RACC will coordinate with the artist/artist team, PP&R Community Engagement, project design team, and construction team.

The artist(s) will be responsible for delivering a completed artwork for installation. RACC will coordinate installation with the artist(s), the construction contractor, and any third party vendors, if necessary.


Information sessions:
1. Instagram Live session on April 7, 2023 2:00pm (PDT)

2. Zoom on April 11, 2023 3:30pm (PDT) with Mack McFarland from RACC and Sandra Burtzos from Portland Parks & Recreation

RFQ Due:                           April 20th, 2023, 11:59 pm Pacific Time

Finalists Notified                  May 17, 2023

Proposal Interviews             June 2023

Preliminary Drawings          July 1, 2023

Final Drawings                     Oct 1, 2023

Fabrication                           Oct 2023 – July 2024

Installation                            Aug-Sept 2024

Final Completion                 Oct 1, 2024

Selection Process

 A Selection Panel composed of Portland Parks and Recreation representatives, local artists, community members, and the Parklane Park design team members will review artists’ materials in the Selection Phase and choose no more than 3 finalists for the Proposal Interview Phase. One finalist will be selected for the commission.

Criteria for selecting artists for the Proposal Interview Phase will be

  • Artistic vibrancy of submitted past work
  • Potential of the artist(s) to meet general goals described above
  • Artist’s interest in project and its goals
  • Potential to work successfully with the design and construction teams

Artistic vibrancy is defined as an artistic practice that

  • Demonstrates integrity of process
  • Embodies excellence of craft and skill
  • Demonstrates imagination, distinctiveness, and originality
  • Contributes to artistic practice
  • Engages with the diversity and complexity of contemporary life
  • Is relevant in a local, national, and global context

During the Selection Phase, no more than 3 finalists will be selected for the Proposal Interview phase.  Each finalist/team will be paid a $4,000 honorarium to develop a proposal and will be reimbursed for travel expenses.  Finalists will present their proposals in an interview format with the entire Selection Panel.

Proposal Interview

Criteria for selecting the final artist(s):

  • Demonstrated artistic vibrancy
  • Feasibility of the proposed concept
  • Demonstrated competency of materials and fabrication through own skills or subcontracted fabricators
  • Potential to work successfully with the project design team
  • Ease of maintenance and durability of materials
  • Not currently represented in the public art collections in Portland with a permanent artwork

Overall, the purpose of the interview is to allow the artist(s) and panel to meet each other and engage in a mutually beneficial and informative conversation. It’s an opportunity for the artist(s) to better understand the context of the project and the intentions the selection panel has for the final art piece. Both parties are given the chance to ask questions and participate in determining the best alignment for the project. After the interviews are completed, the Selection Panel will choose a final artist/artist team to award the public art opportunity to.

Please note the Selection Panel reserves the right to select an artist who does not directly apply to this call, if appropriate. Likewise, the panel maintains the option to make no selection from submitted applications and to reopen the selection process or propose other methods of selection if no applicant is accepted.

Application Materials

In response to the RFQ, applicants will be asked to submit the following items through the RACC Opportunity Portal. It is the responsibility of the applicant to complete and submit materials by the closing date: 11:59pm, Pacific Time, April 20th, 2023.

Applications must include the following:

Artist bio/résumé. Two-page résumé uploaded as a PDF that outlines professional accomplishment and includes two professional references (name, affiliated organization, email address, and phone number). For team applications, include a 2-page résumé for each team member that is combined into one PDF.

Statement of interest. In 3,000 characters or less, provide a statement that outlines the following:

  • Your interest in this project
  • Why this project, its focus, location, and goals are of interest to you
  • Why you’d be a good match for the project
  • Your capacity and/or experience to create these artworks
  • If you are applying as a team, describe your individual roles on the team and how you anticipate working together

Up to 8 past work samples. These work samples are the primary way the  artistic vibrancy and quality of your work and practice  will be judged. Provide up to two images, no larger than 5MB each, for each work sample. For each image, please provide title, artist name, media, dimensions, year completed, budget, and location if applicable. Conceptual information is desirable but not required.

Once you have started your application, you can save after each step and sign out. Your application will be saved as a draft that you can continue to work on as needed. Please note that after you click “Submit,” your application is final and no further edits can be made.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us throughout the process.

Information sessions:

Instagram Live session on April 7, 2023 2:00pm (PDT)

Zoom on April 11, 2023 3:30pm (PDT) with Mack McFarland from RACC and Sandra Burtzos from Portland Parks & Recreation

RFQs are due 11:59pm, Pacific Time, April 20th, 2023


We are here to support and assist you! If you have questions about the overall opportunity or the RACC application portal; would like to set up a time for a phone/video call; or have any other needs for assistance, please email project manager, Mack McFarland at mmcfarland@racc.org.

If you would like to be considered for this opportunity and don’t have a computer or online access, please feel free to contact RACC for support. Also, if you prefer these materials in another language you can contact the RACC project team for translation services.

We strongly encourage you to submit your application with enough time for any questions to be answered prior to when submissions are due as inquiries received towards the end of that period may not be responded to. We appreciate your understanding and consideration of our capacity.

Interpretation services are available: please email info@racc.org.

Servicio de interpretación disponible.

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