FSU IRCB Art in State Buildings Call to Artists

Through the state of Florida's Art in State Buildings program (ASB) Program, Florida State University (FSU) seeks proposals for existing or new 2D or 3D public art to be installed permanently inside or on the grounds of the Interdisciplinary Research and Commercialization Building (IRCB) currently under construction.

Location: FSU, Innovation Park, Tallahassee, Florida

Budget: $100,000*

Submission Deadline: May 17, 2024

Project Timeline: Anticipated completion date is the end of 2024

Left, Architectural rendering of the IRCB courtesy of HGA

Project Overview: The IRCB is a $125 million facility that will serve as a collaborative space for researchers from a variety of fields focused on creating and advancing new materials. The IRCB will accommodate faculty research needs and collaborative groups working in the broader areas of biomedical, energy, material science, quantum science, engineering, and nanoscience.

Constructed with funding provided by the Florida Legislature and FSU Research Foundation, the building will be located on the corner of Levy Avenue and Engineering Way in the Innovation Park corridor. FSU buildings in that area include the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering, the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, the High-Performance Materials Institute and the Aero-Propulsion, Mechatronics and Energy Building, among others.

Eligibility: The call is open to all professional 2D and 3D artists who are residents of the 50 States and the District of Columbia and working in any medium. Artists must meet at least two (2) of the following criteria to have their proposal presented to the Art Selection Committee.

  • the artist has completed other public commissions on a similar scale
  • the artist has received awards, grants or fellowships
  • the artist's works are included in private, public, corporate or museum collections
  • the artist has participated in exhibitions at major museums or galleries

Building Design: Envisioned as a hub for research, the building’s programming and design are intended to promote collaboration—the catalyst for significant innovation and discovery. The 116,000-square-foot building is designed to facilitate interactions in laboratories, core facilities and strategically placed collaboration spaces. It will consist of three floors of mostly open labs, sized for up to 30 research groups, 24 postdoctoral researchers and 155 graduate and undergraduate students. See a video fly through rendering here.

See plans for level 1, 2 and 3 here.

Architects designed the interior with clean lines, high ceilings, and large windows to allow for an abundance of natural light. Interior finishes will include glass, exposed concrete, painted metal, walnut, light oak, and a color scheme of black, grey, garnet, yellow and green. See the project's colorboard here.

Right, Architectural rendering of the IRCB southwest corner view courtesy of HGA

Artwork Sites: Three potential artwork sites have been identified, two interior and one exterior. They are listed in no particular order of preference. Eligible artists are invited to submit for any or all three of the artwork Sites. 

  • Site 1: The first-floor lobby of the building has two public entrances and is flanked by glass walls and windows. The space could accommodate a two-dimensional artwork, including a directly applied mural, on one of the walls near the south entrance.  See detailed plans and dimensions of Site 1 here.
  • Site 2: A wide central staircase, open to the floors above, is a prominent feature of the space. A three-dimensional, translucent, or reflective artwork would be ideal to suspend above or incorporate into the central staircase area. See detailed plans and dimensions of Site 2 here.
  • Site 3: The south-west corner of the exterior has been designed to function as an outdoor public plaza for pedestrian (not vehicular) traffic and could accommodate a sculptural artwork. See detailed plans and dimensions of Site 3 here.

Artwork Details: The Committee is interested in reviewing submissions of existing artworks available for purchase. They are also interested in viewing examples of an artist’s previous work, available or not, with a view toward commissioning site-specific work for one or more of these sites. Artists interested in being considered for a commission should submit images of past work similar to what they might create for this facility along with a brief proposal describing a potential new work for this project along with estimated costs and timelines.

Themes should reflect invention, commercialization, collaboration, inquiry, and innovation. An example is the drug Taxol, invented by Robert Holton, an FSU professor who synthesized the drug 30 years ago, making it commercially available for treating breast cancer.

The Committee is open to any style, subject matter, or theme that is appropriate for this public space and commensurate with its intended use as outlined in this call.

Any artist selected for commission will further refine and the concept, style, theme, and subject matter which must be suitable for a diverse public viewing audience.

Left, Architectural rendering of the IRCB interior central staircase courtesy of HGA

Additional Considerations: 

Artwork must fit within the dimensions of the specified location and allow for easy accessibility around the piece.

Final installed artworks, either indoor or outdoor, should not require either water or electricity.

All proposed artworks, either indoor or outdoor, must be made of materials suitable for permanent installation and not require substantial, ongoing maintenance.

Proposals for outdoor artwork must include materials and designs that are durable enough to last through potentially severe and hazardous weather, including tropical activity and high winds over a long course of time without extensive maintenance. UV-resistant and rust resistant materials should be used. The artwork must be able to withstand touching by the unsupervised public, and should have no sharp edges

Artworks should be constructed to reasonably discourage theft and vandalism and must take into consideration the area surrounding the piece.

The proposed artwork is intended to be installed permanently and must meet all current applicable codes.

The artwork must be able to withstand touching by the unsupervised public, and should have no sharp edges, and remain cool to the touch in full sun.

The artwork will be owned and maintained by Florida State University.

*Budget: The total budget available for this project is $100,000

Finalists will receive a $2,000 honorarium to create and submit a detailed, finalized proposal. The total amount for finalist honorariums will not exceed $10,000.

The remaining $90,000 will be divided among up to three selected artists whose proposals address any or all of the three identified artwork Sites. The allocation will include the design, engineering, materials, fabrication, transportation, delivery and installation of the selected artwork at the Site, and all other associated expenses including but not limited to: additional Site preparation or modification, project documentation, any travel expenses, artist’s fees, subcontractor’s fees, unexpected expenses and any other associated costs. FSU's contractor will supervise installation. Signage recognizing the artist and the work will be provided.


Dates are subject to change. Each individual Project’s timeline is dependent upon and may be influenced by factors that can arise during the selection, fabrication, or installation process which may include but are not limited to construction delays, availability and decisions of committee members, weather, and unforeseen circumstances.

March 1, 2024 - Call to Artists published

March 22, 2024- Optional site visit (get details and register by emailing amanda@akt-artful.com)

May 17, 2024 at 5:00pm EST- Call to Artists Deadline

June 7, 2024 - Notifications made to all applicants

Aug. 2, 2024 at 5:00pm EST - Finalists Proposal Deadline

Aug. 16, 2024 - Notifications are made to all finalists

Dec. 2024 - Artwork installation

Ideally, the proposed artwork is intended to be installed before Dec. 31, 2024. There is some flexibility with the installation timing of artwork for Site 3. While the installation timeline for all three Sites may be adjusted due to unforeseen circumstances, please create any proposals with a 2024 installation in mind.

Right, Architectural rendering of the IRCB interior courtesy of HGA

Selection: FSU has established a Committee comprised of the Art in State Buildings administrator, the project director, and representatives from FSU, the project’s architectural firm, and area visual artists with expertise in public art design, fabrication, and installation. The Committee will objectively review, discuss, and analyze submitted proposals and narrow the list of applicants to up to five Finalists.

Finalists will be selected on merit, design, composition, originality, craftsmanship, thematic content, materials, safety, and compatibility with the use of the building and the specified locations. Experience, qualifications, and feasibility of budget and timeline will also be factored into the submission review process. Finalists will be invited to develop and submit a more detailed proposal for final consideration and selection.

Committee members shall be ineligible to submit their own artwork for consideration. Committee members must abide by section 112.3143, Florida Statutes, entitled “Voting Conflicts.”

The Committee reserves the right to reject any or all of the proposals and stop the selection process at any time.

FSU reserves the right to reject selected artwork if upon delivery it is not deemed representative of the appearance or fabrication indicated by the submitted images and/or materials.

If your proposal is selected, you may be asked to cooperate on revisions or alterations.

Following final notifications in August, FSU and the ASB administrator will work with selected artists on agreements, detailed and finalized budgets, and fabrication/installation timelines with an anticipated installation date slated for December 2024. 

Required Profile Information: Additional information may be requested from applicants prior to or after the submission deadline.

  • Contact Information
  • Artist Statement
  • Current professional resume/CV, with emphasis on public art experiene. To be considered, you must demonstrate that you meet at least two of the listed eligibility criteria.
  • Brief description of background, training, and experience.
  • Brief description of why your artwork is appropriate for the project, which of the three artwork Sites your work is proposed for, and how the submitted images relate to the project requirements.
  • Itemized budget that does not exceed the maximum allowable allocation
  • Estimated timeline and proposed installation date
  • Maintenance guidelines for existing or proposed works

Left, Architectural rendering of the IRCB front view courtesy of HGA

Image Submissions: 

  • up to 3 images of previous, successful public artworks, along with descriptive information 
  • up to 5 images of existing artwork available for purchase, along with descriptive information
  • up to 7 images/drawings of proposed artwork, along with descriptive information (images of a maquette of a proposed work are acceptable), including any renderings or plans needed to adequately explain the proposed artwork

Acceptable file formats are JPG, PNG, GIF, MP4, MOV, MP3, PDF, or DOC

Submission Tips:
You must have an active user account to submit. 
Have your materials prepared before you begin your submission form.
You must "cut and paste" your artist statement and resume/CV instead of uploading them as digital document files.
You will be timed out of the system in 60 mins, but you can log back in as needed until the submission deadline to complete or edit your form.
It may help to have the prospectus accessible in a separate window to refer back to.
Individual confirmations for each of your submitted images and proposal notifications will be sent to the email address you provide. Check your spam folder if they don't arrive in your inbox.

Sole Point of Contact: The Art in State Buildings Administrator for this project is Amanda Karioth Thompson. If you have any questions about the prospectus, application, process, or project, please contact her at amanda@akt-artful.com.  

Respondents to this call or persons acting on their behalf shall not contact any Committee member, employee or officer of FSU, Board of Trustees, or a University Direct Support Organization concerning any aspect of this call, except in writing to the Sole Point of Contact as provided above. Violation of this provision may be grounds for rejecting a proposal response. 

About FSU: Located in Tallahassee, the capital of Florida, FSU stands as a leading public research institution since its establishment in 1851. Recognized for academic and artistic excellence, FSU offers a diverse array of undergraduate and graduate programs across disciplines, supported by cutting-edge facilities and distinguished faculty. The campus blends historic and modern architecture, creating an inspiring environment for a diverse student body. Beyond academics, FSU fosters a vibrant community through dynamic student life, Seminole athletics, and a commitment to service and inclusion. With a rich history and an eye toward the future, FSU prepares students for success and leadership in a global landscape.

About Florida's Art in State Buildings Program: Established in 1979, this program continues to highlight local, national, and internationally recognized artists in its growing collection of diverse art. An amount of up to one-half of one percent (0.5%), not exceeding $100,000 of the state funds appropriated for a new building is set aside for the acquisition of public art for that facility. Since the inception of the program, more than 1,000 works of art have been purchased or commissioned for Florida public spaces. You'll find them in nearly every Florida county, throughout state university and college campuses, and in locations such as state office buildings, Department of Transportation complexes, Department of Health facilities, and courthouses.

Submission Process Tutorial