Renaissance Water Tower – Call to Artists

Renaissance Water Tower – Call to Artists


Fresno Housing Authority and AXIS Art Consulting request proposals from artists for the opportunity to transform an historic water tower in Downtown Fresno into a work of public art. The Renaissance Water Tower project will enliven and activate this public space, and the completed tower will become a prominent landmark that provides greater visibility to the area. Selected artist(s) are expected to work in a collaborative manner with community groups and multiple stakeholders.

About the site

Renaissance at Santa Clara, located 1555 Santa Clara Street, Fresno, CA 93706, opened in November 2012 as permanent supportive housing for persons who are chronically homeless and/or have a severe mental illness. Renaissance at Santa Clara provides spacious studio apartments; fully-furnished units offer residents the opportunity to transition from a state of homelessness to one of stability where they can then focus on well-being and assimilation into the broader community. The water tower is incorporated into the housing development, and rises to a height of approximately 90’. The tower is clearly visible from California State Route 41 Freeway and will provide a permanent site for public art.

Artwork scope

An artist or artist team shall design, fabricate and install exterior artwork to the water tower emphasizing the theme of “Renaissance” and how it relates to the Renaissance at Santa Clara community. A unique approach to the project is welcomed. The desired effect is an aesthetic impact that reinforces Renaissance at Santa Clara’s mission of transition, stability and well-being through opportunity. The overall design should be integrated into Renaissance at Santa Clara’s mission. Specific scope of work will be provided to the commission finalists.


Fresno Housing Authority’s mission is to create and sustain vibrant communities throughout Fresno County. Fresno Housing Authority is committed to innovation and excellence in housing and services for low-income households throughout the city and county.  Emphasis is placed on the value of good design in its developments and the importance of creating places that support vibrant and engaged communities.

AXIS Art Consulting builds, curates and manages private and public art collections for individual collectors, organizations and museums.  We are inviting all qualified local, regional, national and international artists to submit proposals for consideration for the Renaissance Water Tower project.


The total budget for the Renaissance Water Tower is not to exceed $40,000. The budget includes, but is not limited to: attendance at meetings with agency, consultant and committee, designs, engineering, fabrication, delivery, installation, community outreach activities, insurance, travel and all applicable taxes.


The Request for Proposals (RFP) is open to all professional artists, twenty-one years of age or older who have completed a minimum of 2 public art projects with a budget of $10,000 or more, and have demonstrated experience completing and coordinating exterior art installations with community groups and stakeholders. Interested artists should apply only if they are able to complete the project in accordance with the schedule.

Interested artists and/or artist teams should submit letter of interest, resume, digital images of past work, two professional references, and indication of at least two prior public art commissions.

Applicants are encouraged to familiarize themselves with Fresno Housing Authority and Renaissance at Santa Clara by visiting the website at

Letter of interest should state artist’s objective(s) for applying, explain how artist’s qualifications and past work relate to the project, and outline prior public art pieces or any other experience of similar scope that is relevant to this project. Resume should include information regarding applicant’s website and/or digital gallery. Please limit resume to three pages. Artist may submit 10 digital images of most recent relevant work in one PDF document format. Please submit one image per page and include an annotated image list. Do not submit any additional images. Please include contact information for public art project manager and budget size of past projects. A detailed proposal for the Renaissance Water Tower project is not requested at this time.

Submissions must be received by 5:00 PM on December 1, 2014.

Anticipated schedule

Artist selection: Early Spring 2015. Artwork completion and installation: Early Summer 2015.


The RFP submissions will be reviewed, and ten artists from the pool of submissions will be selected for consideration by the Renaissance Water Tower Art Selection Committee. Basis for selection may include, but will not be limited to:

  • Quality
  • Creativity and technical competence of past work of similar scope as demonstrated by the visuals and other submission materials
  • Range of versatility of previous work
  • Understanding of the project goals as indicated in the letter of interest
  • Relevance of submitted materials to the Renaissance Water Tower project
  • Aptitude for planning and budgeting as indicated by past project information submitted
  • Understanding of local cultural context
  • Ability to adapt studio work to meet project goals
  • Commitment to participate with community as part of concept development
  • Community outreach in prior works

3-4 artists will be chosen as finalists by the selection committee, and will be asked to submit detailed proposals for the commission. Finalists will be notified regarding the proposal criteria.


Linda Cano, AXIS Art Consulting
PO Box 25760, Fresno, CA 93729-5760

David Brenner, Fresno Housing Authority
1331 Fulton Mall, Fresno, CA 93721

Story Page