Public Design Commission of the City of New York
Art Commission of the City of New York
Art Commission of the City of New York
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Submission Guidelines - Works of Art

Works of art are submitted for conceptual review early in the design process. All works of art at the conceptual stage are required to be reviewed at a committee meeting prior to a public hearing. Preliminary review occurs when the design has been fully developed, and approval at this stage means that a work of art can be fabricated and installed. Final approval is given after a work of art has been installed.

Please note that, while the Design Commission does not review works of art that will be installed for less than one year (“temporary”), they should be submitted for committee review if the intent is for them to remain in place for longer under certain foreseeable circumstances. There is no guarantee that a temporary work of art will be approved for either long-term temporary or permanent installation, so please do not install a work of art with the expectation that approval of existing works of art is a certainty.

Percent for Art Program
The City commissions works of art for City-owned property through the Department of Cultural Affairs' Percent for Art Program. The sponsoring City agency and the Percent for Art Program are jointly responsible for the selection of the artist and the development of the work of art. A member of the Design Commission serves as an advisor to the Percent for Art panel. Once the proposal is approved by both the agency and the Percent for Art Program, it should be submitted to the Design Commission for review. A representative of the Percent for Art Program must be present when an artist makes his/her presentation.
Learn more about the Percent for Art Program

Gifts to the City
Gifts of existing works of art must be approved by the agency on whose property the work of art will be sited and submitted by that agency for review by the Design Commission. There is no guarantee that a work of art will be approved by either the agency or the Design Commission, so please do not fabricate a work of art with the expectation that approval of existing works of art is a certainty.

Gifts of new works of art must also be approved by the agency on whose property the work of art will be sited and submitted by that agency for review by the Design Commission. The donor must work closely with the agency from the earliest stages of the project. It is strongly recommended that the donor, in coordination with the agency, consult with the Percent for Art Program (see above).

Please note that gifts of works of art will not be accepted unless there are appropriate funds committed by the donor for ongoing maintenance.

Conceptual Review

  1. Two copies of the Application Form signed by the Commissioner of the Department of Cultural Affairs or the Director of Percent for Art and/or the appropriate representative of the private entity proposing the gift as well as the Commissioner or designated representative of the sponsoring City agency on whose property the work is proposed.
  2. A written statement of the artist's intent.
  3. Photographs or digital images of the artist's prior work and a current resume. 1
  4. A minimum of eight (8) loose 8” x 10” color photographs of the site and surrounding area.1
  5. Pre-schematic design drawings at the minimum scales indicated below. 2

    a. Location plan    
    Scale: neighborhood and borough
    b. Existing and proposed site plans, indicating the proposed location of the artwork
    Scale: 1” = 40’
    c. Drawings of the proposed work in situ.
    Scale: 1/16”= 1’-0”
  6. Material samples for the artwork and any relevant building materials are encouraged. 4

  7. Written confirmation of community board review. (Agencies are encouraged to submit the community board’s resolution.)

Conceptual approval is conditioned upon submission of the project for preliminary review and approval within two years.

Please note that, if any significant design changes are made in design development subsequent to conceptual approval, the project must be submitted for committee review and approval prior to developing fabrication drawings.
Download the Application Form

Preliminary Review

  1. Two copies of the Application Form signed by the Commissioner of the Department of Cultural Affairs or the Director of Percent for Art and/or the appropriate representative of the private entity proposing the gift as well as the Commissioner or designated representative of the sponsoring City agency on whose property the work is proposed.
  2. A written statement that specifies:
    a. location
    b. dimensions
    c. materials
    d. budget
    e. fabricator's name (if applicable)
    f. installation specifications and schedule
    g. maintenance specifications
    h. maintenance endowment fund plan (if applicable)
    i. any design revisions since conceptual approval (As noted above, if any significant design changes are made in design development subsequent to conceptual approval, the project should have been submitted for committee review and approval prior to proceeding to fabrication drawings.)
  3. Fabrication drawings, including the dimensions and actual colors (or an approximation) of the proposed work, at the minimum scales indicated below. 2

    a. Location plan    
    Scale: neighborhood and borough
    b. Existing and proposed site plans, indicating the proposed location of the artwork
    Scale: 1” = 40’
    c. Drawings, including details, of the proposed work in situ.
    Scale: 1/16”= 1’-0”

    For all projects that require a permit from the Department of Buildings, please note that all construction drawings must conform to the Department of Building’s requirements for its B-SCAN system (see B-SCAN Requirements). 
  4. One (1) or more renderings that clearly depict the artwork in its context, including accurate representation(s) from 5’-0” viewpoint.
  5. For a three-dimensional artwork (free standing, relief and architectural sculpture, etc.), a minimum of eight (8) loose 8” x 10” photographs of a full-scale model. 3
  6. Material samples for the artwork and any relevant building materials. 4
  7. A complete list of materials for the artwork, including any relevant building materials, with the name of the manufacturer, color and finish.
Preliminary approval is conditioned upon commencement of work within two years of the preliminary approval date and submission of this project for final review and approval. 
Download the Application Form

Final Review

  1. Two copies of the Application Form signed by the Commissioner of the Department of Cultural Affairs or the Director of Percent for Art and/or the appropriate representative of the private entity proposing the gift as well as the Commissioner or designated representative of the sponsoring City agency on whose property the work is proposed.
  2. A minimum of three (3) 8" x 10" color photographs depicting three different views of the installed artwork. 1

Download the Application Form

1 All photos must be clearly labeled on the back. Polaroids or color photocopies will not be accepted. If using a digital camera, photographs must be printed on photo-quality paper. 

2 Drawings must be submitted in the following formats: 

a. Two complete sets of unmounted drawings, properly collated and stapled, must be submitted. All drawings must indicate scale. Plans must include a north arrow, and elevations must indicate façade orientation. Drawings should not exceed 36" as the longest dimension to comply with Department of Buildings requirements. Half-size drawings are preferable as long as they are legible. Any reduced drawings must include a graphic scale.
b. Critical drawings, including renderings, must be mounted on one (1) or more 30" x 40" boards for presentation (see Presentation Guidelines) and/or included in a PowerPoint presentation. All PowerPoint presentations must utilize .jpg images only that have been resized before being inserted in the presentation, so the completed presentation is limited to 30 MB. Additionally, PowerPoint presentations must be formatted for Windows XP or an earlier version with no automatic slide advances, and submitted on a CD and as duplicate print-outs, properly collated and stapled.
c. For conceptual and preliminary review, PDFs of drawings must also be provided on a disc.

3 A minimum of eight (8) loose 8” x 10” color photographs, including close-ups, of the model is required. Photographs must show the model from different viewpoints and be clearly labeled on the back.

4 One (1) or more 8” x 10” color photographs of each non-standard material sample are required. All photos must be clearly labeled on the back.

5 Please do not use plastic binding or sleeves.