Background: The Downtown Ithaca Alliance (DIA) in Ithaca, New York (downtownithaca.com) is now soliciting portfolios from sculptors, muralists, painters, and digital artists interested in being considered for Art in the Heart 2016. Now in its seventeenth year, Art in the Heart is an outdoor public art exhibition running from June to November. It is an eclectic and engaging showcase of local, regional, and national talent designed to enhance the community’s walkable urban core and to engage our large and diverse population of residents and visitors in inspection, interaction, and conversation. Art in the Heart is supported in part by the Community Arts Partnership of Tompkins County as well as numerous individual and corporate donors.
Format: Art in the Heart has employed several different themes and formats over the years. This season, the central component of Art in the Heart will be an invitational that will bring to downtown Ithaca three impressive new works:
- a compelling, large-scale sculpture or suite of sculptural works for temporary display (June to November) on a to-be-specified outdoor publically-owned site within the downtown Ithaca district
- a suite of large painted panels or other moveable two-dimensional works for temporary display (June to November) on a to-be-specified outdoor publically- or privately-owned wall within the downtown Ithaca district
- a large mural or other expansive two-dimensional site-based work for semi-permanent display (beyond November, at the discretion of the owner) on a to-be-specified privately-owned wall within the downtown Ithaca district
Either of the latter two works could involve interactive and/or multimedia elements. As the exhibition’s juried open call component, the DIA will be piloting a new program called Art in the Air, where artists of all walks of life and experience levels are invited to submit designs for vinyl banners on the Ithaca Commons (please see tiny.cc/artintheair for more information.)
Selection Process: Artists interested in being considered as invited exhibitors are invited to email a portfolio to the DIA via an internationally distributed call. The DIA will convene an Art in the Heart Advisory Committee including noted community artists, art professionals, and representatives from the City of Ithaca, the Public Arts Commission, the Community Arts Partnership, and other partnering organizations. This group will review submitted portfolios and other materials and produce a priority list of recommended candidates in each of the desired categories (sculpture, panels, mural). DIA staff will work from this list to identify and collaborate with three artists who are able to produce pieces of optimal scale, durability, and visual impact. The DIA and the selected artists will consult with appropriate stakeholders (e.g. property owners and relevant municipal agencies).
Compensation: Participating artists will receive a stipend of $1,250.00 (panels and mural) or $2,500.00 (sculpture). This stipend is meant to offset costs of fabrication, transport, installation, and de-installation. Sculpture and panel artists may list their work for sale; the DIA will retain a 15 percent commission for all sales during or immediately following the exhibition. Unless waived, artwork will be insured by the City of Ithaca.
Timeline: Portfolios due: March 11. Advisory Committee meets: March 15-March 19. Preliminary sketches/renderings due from selected artists: April 22. Installation: June 5-June 15. Opening reception and tour: July 1. De-installation: November 5-November 15.
Instructions: If you would like to be considered as an invited exhibitor for Art in the Heart 2016, please email a portfolio (including a bio/artist statement, exhibition history and several representative images in one or more of the requested categories) to firstname.lastname@example.org by 5:00 PM on March 11, 2016. Note: please do not send a proposal for a specific project; at this juncture, we are only reviewing artists’ overall oeuvre and exhibition experience.
Inquiries: Please email email@example.com with any questions or comments in advance of the portfolio deadline.
The Ithaca Downtown Business Improvement District (IDBID), is a State of New York chartered 501c3 not-for-profit organization charged with the revitalization, development, promotion, and management of downtown Ithaca. The IDBID operates as the Downtown Ithaca Alliance (DIA). The following vision statement guides the work and operation of the Downtown Ithaca Alliance: “Downtown Ithaca is the economic, social, and cultural heart of Tompkins County. The Downtown Ithaca Business Improvement District will strive to preserve and develop the central downtown core as the region’s center for banking and finance, business and professional offices, government and community services, downtown residences, and as a retail destination highlighted by specialty shops, restaurants, arts and entertainment. Downtown serves people who live and work downtown, city and county residents, college communities, area visitors and tourists.”
Calling all artists… we want to see your art in the air! You may have noticed that the Downtown Ithaca Alliance has embarked on a sponsored seasonal banner program to add color, variety, and beauty to the newly renovated Ithaca Commons pedestrian mall. Banners with vibrant explosions of confetti commemorated the official reopening of the Commons, and a herd of charming reindeer took over for the holiday shopping season. For Summer 2016, we want to try something new: we’re asking community artists of all walks of life to submit their own designs for a chance to see them printed on the banners.
There’s no fee to submit, the theme is open, and there’s no limit to the media you can use. Painting, drawing, photography, printmaking, and digital art are just some of the options. It’s time to get creative! The only rules are that the content must be appropriate for all public audiences and that the compositions must adhere to the banners’ 1:2.5 vertical aspect ratio.
We’re asking that artists submit a preliminary sketch or file by April 18, 2016. This image must be constrained to a 1:2.5 vertical aspect ratio but need not be submitted at print-ready resolution. E.g., a 3″ x 7.5″ drawing on a regular sheet of paper or a 400x1000px digital image would suffice. Just email the image, along with your contact info, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, mail or drop it off at our office: 171 E. State St. Ste. 136 Ithaca NY 14850.
Then what happens? After all submissions are received, the DIA will convene an advisory jury of art lovers to review and score the submissions. The twelve (12) highest-scored artists will then be invited to submit a final image, which must be clearly reproducible at 1872x4680px. These images will be printed on vinyl banners to be installed in time for the Art in the Heart opening reception and tour on July 1, 2016. The banners will remain on display through November and will be auctioned off during Ice Fest to support expanded public art programs in 2017. As a thank-you, all participating artists will receive a print of their design on a smaller vinyl banner suitable for indoor display. Artists will also be acknowledged in our print, online, and mobile Art in the Heart/Art in the Air guides.
Some boring legalese: Submissions will be accepted from any individual or group. Youth, students, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and elders are all strongly encouraged to apply. Artists will retain copyright to all submitted designs with the caveat that they will be reproduced and shared by the DIA and partnering agencies for promotional and documentary purposes. Any artists who submit hardcopy artwork to the DIA will be able to pick their pieces back up after imaging although we cannot arrange for return mailing. Selected artists will receive no cash compensation and will agree to relinquish all ownership and droit de suite-type rights to the final vinyl banners, which will remain the property of the DIA until sold at a benefit auction at the close of the exhibition. Banner designs will be selected, and may be subsequently moved or removed, at the sole discretion of the DIA, which independently manages the seasonal banner program as per its MOU with the City of Ithaca; the community jury will rank the submissions “blind” (without name or title appended) but will operate in an advisory capacity for this iteration of the banner program only.
Thanks… we can’t wait to see all your beautiful designs!
The 18th annual Great Downtown Ithaca Chili Cook-off will return to downtown Ithaca Saturday afternoon, bringing dozens of area chefs to the recently renovated Commons to serve up hot bowls of chili and compete for coveted prizes.
This year’s festival runs from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will also include local microbrews and wine, farm-fresh goods, karaoke, a beard and mustache competition, and an indoor Family Fun Zone featuring a roller skating rink.
This year’s selection of edibles will be as diverse and delectable as ever, with such special recipes as short rib chili, vegetarian roasted red pepper chili, chocolate-dipped pork belly, spicy chili pickles, and chili calzones.
The chili will be judged by a panel of local notables and all attendees will have a chance to vote for their favorite for the People’s Choice Award. Restaurateurs will be joined by local vintners and brewers, including Bandwagon, Bacchus and Six Mile Creek (don’t forget to bring your ID).
The Tompkins Trust Company, a longtime supporter of the Chili Cook-Off and this year’s presenting sponsor, will be taking Chili-Cook Off to a whole new level by converting the Center Ithaca lobby into a Family Fun Zone for the day, packed with free and affordable activities for the whole family. These include face painting, craft stations, and even indoor rollerskating!
Also new this year, the Finger Lakes School of Massage will be offering free massages from current students in the lobby of their brand-new location in the Rothschild Building at 215 E. State St.
Chili Idol Karaoke presented by Elephant Sound will run throughout the event on the stage of the Bernie Milton Pavilion. Sign up on the spot to belt out your favorite tune and compete for a trophy.
As you stroll the Commons, keep a lookout for world-renowned hypnotist Michael C. Anthony, who will be working the crowds to promote his 5 p.m. show at the State Theatre that evening – it has been described as “an avant-garde blend of the human psyche and eye-popping theatre” that will “surprise even the most hardened skeptic.”
From 3 to 3:30 p.m., the Ithaca Beard and Moustache Club-a local organization whose mission statement affirms that “with great facial hair comes great responsibility”-will host the 7th annual Chili Stache Competition, which this year will include such categories as “Crafty All Ages Chili Stache” and “Best Full Chili Beard.”
Presale tickets are available at the Downtown Visitors Center (171 E. State St.), at all Collegetown Bagels locations (203 N. Aurora St., 415 College Ave. and 329 Pine Tree Road) If you’re coming in from out of town, you can reserve tickets at will-call with your credit card by calling the Downtown Ithaca Alliance at (607) 277-8679. As always, you can purchase tickets on the day of the event (cash only.) Tickets are $5 for five tastes of wine, beer, and food, or $11 for ten tastes. At double the price, VIP tickets give you access to a separate, fast-moving line for tastes, plus a chili necklace.