Calls & Opportunities for Artists

Banners for Black History Month: Artist(s) Needed

The Arlington Human Rights Commission (AHRC, Arlington, MA) seeks an artist (or collaborating artists)  to create new work or adapt existing work for light pole banners for Black History Month, February 2021.  Six designs are needed to make 12 new banners which will be hung along Massachusetts Avenue in East  Arlington for the month of February.

Designs will also be posted on the AHRC website and the website of the Arlington Commission for the Arts (our project partner) along with bio/information about the artist and link to their website. The project will be promoted to local and regional press and both organizations’ social media. Our goal is to commission a Black artist to share their perspective on the historical and/or ongoing struggle for equity, inclusion and racial justice. Only Massachusetts residents are eligible. Selection will be made by a subcommittee  of the Arlington Human Rights Commision.


DEADLINE FOR EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST: January 2, 2021 midnight (see details below)  ARTIST NOTIFICATION: January 4, 2021.

DESIGNS DUE: January 18, 2021 as print-ready digital files (dimensions and specs to be provided). We regret that the timeline is tight and apologize that submission and delivery deadlines cannot be extended.

THEME: Figures Fighting For Social Justice. This theme is open to artistic interpretation; you may use historical  figures, contemporary figures, imagined figures or abstractions.

DESIGN MEDIA: Open to all media (digital or hand illustration, painting, collage, photography etc). The format of the banners and installation in public space will make simpler, bolder, eye-catching images most effective.


We hope to make it as simple as possible to apply and request the following:

•  name, address, phone and email

•  artist website and/or instagram link;

•  3-6 jpg images documenting original work and chosen to give selection committee a sense of how the artist would approach this project. NOTE: If you have an existing body of work that you propose adapting for this project by reformatting, please submit the specific images.

•  one concept sketch or short written description of design/concept approach;

•  one professional reference willing to be contacted by email.


Apply for Grants — The New England Musicians Relief Fund

The New England Musicians Relief Fund hopes to distribute by the end of the year $200,000 in grants to musicians in need who were impacted by the pandemic. Professional musicians in New England and New York’s Upper Hudson Valley can apply for grants at Anyone looking to donate can do so at

Illustrator Needed for Philharmonic Performance

The Arlington Philharmonic Orchestra is seeking a visual artist to create a series of approximately 10 illustrations to accompany a pre-recorded video of Pasquale Tassone’s narrated musical children’s story, “How Bear Lost Its Tail.”  The performance will be released online on March 14, 2021.

Interested applicants should submit a small digital portfolio of their work by November 30, 2020 and will be notified of selection by December 11, 2020. Final illustrations will be required by February 15, 2021. Compensation is $100 per illustration,  up to 10 illustrations are desired.

If willing, the artist may also be invited to conduct a short virtual visiting artist workshop for Arlington art students to generate additional artwork related to the story that will be included in a gallery on the Philharmonic Society of Arlington’s website.

This concert will be supported in part by a grant from the Arlington Cultural Council. For further information, please contact music director Orlando Cela, at

Youth Banners 2021

We invite students in grades 6 – 12  who live or attend school in Arlington to submit creative and thoughtful artwork for the Youth Banner Initiative. The theme this year is PROTEST: LIFTING VOICES. Social, environmental, and economic justice, protection of our earth and its creatures are all possible. But your artwork can be about what matters to you the most, how you can use your voice for change and what things you wish to protect and speak out for.

  • Students may submit only one entry
  • 2 panels each 12”H x 4”W (for a total of 12” H x 8”W). The  composition can be across the two panels.
  • Any two-dimensional medium (painting, drawing, collage, photography, printmaking)
  • Write your name, email, school, grade, and teacher on the back
  • Submit your hard copy artwork and completed application form to:
    Arlington High School
    869 Massachusetts Ave.
    Arlington, MA 02476
    ATTENTION: Dave Ardito

Entry Deadline: Friday, December 18, 2020 

A jury will select 20 artworks based on the following:

  • Thoughtful interpretation of the theme
  • Readability (since banners are viewed from a distance, we are looking for images that are bold and not overly detailed.)
  • Craftsmanship
  • Originality

Students will be notified at the end of December. Artworks will be printed on vinyl banners, and hung along Massachusetts Avenue in  Arlington Center in the spring of 2021. Three  students will be selected by the jury to each receive a $200 scholarship prize.  New this year: People’s Choice Award to be voted on, tallied, and announced at the spring reception.

Questions? Contact Adria Arch at

Funding for this project has been generously provided by the Gracie James Foundation
Sponsored by the Arlington Commission for Arts and Culture and in collaboration with the Arlington Public Schools Visual Art Dept.

Go Out Doors - Neighbors: A Regional Public Art Installation


Mission: “Go Out Doors” inspires discovery and exploration of the region’s walking and bike trails, and the intersection/action of place, community, spirit, and nature.

Artists from Arlington and Greater Boston are invited to submit design concepts to GO OUT DOORS – NEIGHBORS, a regional public art campaign that promotes healthy outdoors activity, environmental appreciation, and inter-town regional tourism in Arlington and along bike and walking paths along Battle Road and Metrowest.

Inspired by the En Plein Air exhibition on NYC’s High Line, “Go Out Doors-Neighbors” extends The Umbrella Arts Center’s “Go Out Doors” installation of artful recycled doors decorated by regional artists currently on display along the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail in West Concord’s Cultural District. These artworks are surprising waypoints of delight whose imagery “celebrates reconnection with nature, our senses, and healthful outdoor activity” to the succor of communities emerging from COVID-19 isolation.

Accepted designs will appear on doors installed townwide in Arlington, and/or neighboring towns. Seeking proposals throughout the month of October.  Read the complete call and specs here.



Arlington’s Poet Laureate, Steve Ratiner, has announced a Call for Submissions to Arlington adult and students who would like to participate in a special project launched during National Poetry Month in April and continuing into summer. You can take a look at all the poems to date here! 


  • Please submit 1-2 original poems, each no longer than 20 lines, on any subject matter, but with this specific goal: choose a poem you’d wish to share with neighbors, whether or not they are readers of poetry – one that will offer surprise, insight, delight.
  • Send submissions via email only. Paste the poem into the body of an email (no attachments, please). Write ‘A Call for Poems’ in the subject line – and, if you are a student, specify at what grade level.  If a poem has been previously published, please do cite the place of publication. Send to Steven Ratiner at Include your name, address, and a phone number where you can be reached if your poem is selected. 

Something missing? Submit a Call for Artists using this form and we’ll get it added to the site!