Submission Requirements

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City of Waterloo is inviting artists to respond to an open call for artists to participate in the Neighbourhood Garden Picnic Table Program. This program will feature the work of up to 12 artists. Artists are invited to submit artwork for consideration to be part of the program. Selected artists will be invited to paint their designs on picnic tables that will be located in one of four community spaces/parks throughout Waterloo. The tables will be available for painting in July and will be featured as part of a community art program for three (3) years.


Project Background Information

The City of Waterloo will be commissioning up to 12 artists to paint picnic tables to be part of the Neighbouhood Picnic Table Program. This program is a joint project between the City’s Neighbourhoods and Art & Culture teams to spur the use of community spaces while also providing paid opportunities for artists to produce and exhibit their work.


Four (4) community parks/spaces have been selected to be part of the program. Three (3) tables will be exhibited in each park. Artwork will be juried by a team of City staff, artists, and community representatives.


The creation, the installation, and the process will be documented as part of a storytelling initiative. Picnic tables will be provided by the City of Waterloo. All painting supplies will be supplied by the participating artists. Painting will take place onsite in each of the community parks/spaces.  Staff will be on-call to support artists as they work.


The goals of the Neighbourhood Picnic Table program are as follows:

  • To create distinct spaces for the community to gather and celebrate local neighbourhoods and identities;
  • To add artistic works to existing neighbourhood spaces;
  • To celebrate the great community spaces, places, and parks that are available for use by the communityÕĺ
  • To beautify and unite public spaces through creative activities and artistic worksÕĺ
  • To celebrate resident-led community building and neighbourhood connections at community gardens;
  • To provide opportunities for emerging and established local artists showcase and share their workÕĺ
  • Contribute to the storytelling and awareness of Waterloo as Bee City as designated by Bee City Canada;
  • Tell unique stories of Waterloo neighbourhoods in partnership with the artists whose work will be featured as part of the program.


Applicants are encouraged to respond to the call with a concept that explores one of more of the following themes:

  • Natural heritage features of the park, community space, or neighbourhood;
  • Open ended play designed to engage residents;
  • Stories of the neighbourhood, the residents, or the community;
  • Movement, connectivity, and pedestrian friendly spaces;
  • Bright, bold, and engaging images that add to the beautification of the area;
  • Resident and neighbourhood engagement, gathering spaces, and community building.


The artist fee for this project is one thousand dollars ($1000). This artist fee is inclusive of artist fees, paint, and supplies.


Proposal Requirements

Artists are invited to submit one concept for consideration. Deadline for submission is May 22, 2023 by 5 p.m. Artists must submit all of the following supporting documentation with their application:


  1. One copy of the completed application form (below).
  2. One image/concept for consideration. Please include the following information for each image: name of artist(s) and title of work.


The submission documents will not be returned. The selected artist will be paid in full for the completed artwork and the use of their image/work. The selected artists will retain all rights to the final design, but will allow the City of Waterloo to reproduce the image/work for promotion of the project.


Selection Process

Images/work will be scored on the following criteria:

  • Artistic merit
  • Connection to project themes
  • Ability to carry out project
  • Aesthetic considerations


City of Waterloo recognizes historic, systemic, and physical barriers have affected access to opportunities and resources for many people. While this opportunity is open to all, priority will be given to racialized individuals including those who identify as Indigenous, Black, and/or people of colour, 2SLGBTQ+, newcomers, Deaf persons, persons with disabilities, and/or Francophone.


Project Schedule:

May 22, 2023  by 5:00 p.m.             Deadline to submit

June                                               Selection Committee review

Throughout July                              Painting of tables


Additional reference materials:

City of Waterloo Neighbourhood Strategy

City of Waterloo Public Art Policy

City of Waterloo Culture Plan


All artists are encouraged to sign up to find out about more opportunities including other artist calls, workshops and professional development offerings, events, resources, and more by joining the Create Waterloo Artist Roster. To find out more, visit:

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