Call for Expressions of Interest: Gardiner Museum Indigenous Public Artwork

The Gardiner Museum seeks to commission a public artwork to honour the ongoing Indigenous presence on Turtle Island. As a museum that features the exhibition of ceramic art, the Gardiner is uniquely positioned to support a work that is both made from the earth and invokes Indigenous Peoples’ connection to the Natural World. On the Ancestral territory and gathering place of the Anishnaabe, the Haudenosaunee, the Petun, the Wendat and the treaty territory of Mississaugas of the Credit, this project may also acknowledge the connections among the many Indigenous communities this land has supported from time immemorial.

Find more details about the project here.

Project Description
In keeping with the Gardiner’s mission to build community with clay, the commissioned artwork must be clay-based or involve a significant ceramic component. The artwork ideally should relate to the land and could, for instance, be installed in the plaza surface or on a wall with a direct relationship to the earth/land. The work could be a more traditional sculpture, but as such it must fit with the three other artworks on the plaza (two currently installed, one anticipated in spring 2020).

The artwork is an opportunity to recognize the history and ongoing Indigenous presence on Turtle Island. It can also represent a welcome to the Museum, and its placement can accentuate this aspect of the work. The work should explicitly communicate its content, so that viewers will readily recognize its function of representing, honouring, and evoking Indigenous communities’ presence on and relationship to the land.

Who Can Apply
We welcome applications from Indigenous artists (First Nations, Inuit, and Métis). We ask applicants to identify Nations with which they affiliate. Applicants should also meet the criteria of a practicing artist as defined by the Canada Council for the Arts:

  • Has specialized training in the artistic field (not necessarily in academic institutions)
  • Is recognized as a professional by his or her peers (artists working in the same artistic tradition)
  • Is committed to devoting more time to artistic activity, if possible, financially
  • Has a history of public presentation or publication.

Artists may apply individually or can submit a collaborative team proposal.

Artists directly involved with the Gardiner Museum are welcome to participate.

Request for Expressions of Interest and Qualifications
Interested artists are requested to please submit the following:

1. Letter of intention describing what interests you about this project (up to 1 page)
2. CV or narrative description of background, training, and artistic work (up to 5 pages)
3. Images of completed artworks or artistic projects, including title, date, materials, and site (up to 20 images total)
4. A signed Agreement to Propose and Consent Form

Please download and the full application

Please submit materials as a single digital PDF or hard copy packet. Complete submissions must be received by the Gardiner Museum by 5pm EST on December 16 in order to be considered. Incomplete submissions will be subject to disqualification. All submission materials will be retained by the Gardiner Museum.

Please submit proposals to:

Digital: [email protected]
Kent Monkman
c/o Gardiner Museum
111 Queen’s Park
Toronto, ON
M5S 2C7