Boston Art Commission

Thermopylae (1966)
Dimitri Hadzi
JFK Federal Building, at Cambridge St. and New Sudbury St.
Thursday, October 23, 2014 Freedom Public Art Project Proposals

Please share your thoughts on the Freedom Public Art Project concept proposals!

The Vietnamese American Initiative for Development (VietAID), in coordination with the Boston Art Commission and Boston Parks Department, will commission one artist to create a permanent and highly visible art work at Doherty-Gibson Park (also known as Town Field) to identify Fields Corner as a destination for business and culture, honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the name of freedom and democracy, and simultaneously serve as inspiration for the neighborhood’s aspirations for freedom from poverty and crime.

With support from the Edward Ingersoll Browne Fund, VietAID issued a call to artists throughout the world to apply, and 144 artists from 27 states and 9 countries submitted their qualifications. A selection committee comprised of residents, community leaders, artists, and a university professor selected three artists, Anh Tran, Joe O’Connell, and Juanjo Novella, to create a design proposal.

The finalists each presented their concepts at a public meeting held on October 20, 2014. 

You can view the artists' proposals online below or at VietAID's website. The artists’ presentation boards are on display at the Fields Corner Branch Library, 1520 Dorchester Avenue, through October 29th. Additionally, the models of the sculptures will be on display at VietAID’s Community Center, 42 Charles Street, this weekend (October 25 & 26) from noon to 5 pm, during Dorchester Open Studios.

Please click on each image below for the artist’s proposal:

Anh Tran         


Joe O’Connell


Juanjo Novella

 Novella 28_Small


 Please email your comments to All comments received by 5 pm on October 29 will be shared with the selection panel. The winner will be announced on November 7, 2014.

Learn more at VietAID's website.


Tuesday, October 21, 2014 R Visions for Chinatown: Remain. Reclaim. Rebuild! October 19 - 25th!

R Visions for Chinatown is a one-week series of temporary art interventions in Boston’s Chinatown highlighting public parcels or properties with potential for community development. 

In response to displacement and the pressure of luxury development, the community created its own Chinatown Master Plan and is working for the goal of 1000 new or newly preserved affordable housing units, for a community-led library, a permanent facility for the Josiah Quincy Upper School, and to stabilize working class residents and small family-owned businesses.  These art projects, curated and sponsored by the Wong/Yee Gallery of the Chinese Progressive Association, represent a part of the community's efforts to reclaim public land and to rebuild a strong sense of community as Chinatown organizes for the right to remain.

R Visions for Chinatown features five projects created by nine local artists and include visual art, multi-media pieces, installations, interactive projects, as well as performances, running at different times during the week of October 19 – 25.  

Download your R Visions for Chinatown Walking Guide here, or grab one from the Chinese Progressive Association's Wong/Yee Gallery (One Nassau Street Unit 2, or 28 Ash Street) or just walk around Chinatown and look for these sites!

Please join the artists at a fundraising reception to benefit Right to the City Boston on Thursday, October 23, 5:30 – 7:00 pm at the Wong/Yee Gallery of the Chinese Progressive Association. Suggested donation $10 or more. Arrive by 6:00 pm to join us for an Art Walk!

For more information go to for further details.


Friday, October 3, 2014 Finalist Presentations for the Freedom Project

Finalist Presentations for the Freedom Project

Public Art in Fields Corner: Doherty - Gibson Park

Monday, Oct. 20, 2014, 6 - 9 pm

Vietnamese American Community Center, 42 Charles Street


Viet-AID has received a planning grant from the Edward Ingersoll Browne Fund, a public charitable trust administered by the City of Boston, to select an artist for a public art project on Town Field in Fields Corner. 


Join us as the three finalists (Juanjo Novella, Joe O’Connell and Anh Tranh) present their design concepts and answer questions. Design concepts will be on view at the Fields Corner Library Oct. 21 - 29.


See or contact Project Manager Jean Mineo at for more information.






Tuesday, September 23, 2014 Mayor Walsh Announces Cabinet Level Chief of Arts + Culture

Important step in ongoing elevation of arts in Boston, Appointee led Chicago’s cultural planning process

BOSTON – Today Mayor Martin J. Walsh announced the appointment of Julie Burros as Boston’s first Chief of Arts and Culture in more than 20 years, following a national search. Burros will be tasked with stewarding the creation of Boston’s Cultural Plan, and work as an advocate for the arts community across new policy creation. Burros is currently the director of Cultural Planning for the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, a position she has held for more than 15 years. She will begin her role as Chief of Arts and Culture for the City of Boston in December 2014.

“I’ve said from Day One that I want to elevate Boston’s arts and culture profile,” said Mayor Walsh. “During the campaign, I often heard about the need for the arts to be more integrated into the lives of residents and visitors. Julie will bring a fresh perspective and a strong foundation of expertise to envision Boston’s cultural future and execute a master plan for the arts.”

In her position with the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, Burros works at the intersection of planning, culture, community development, and capacity building. During her tenure she has strengthened the arts community, and improved the City of Chicago’s cultural identity. Burros has a diversity of experience in policymaking, grant programming, non-profit development, and municipal government.

“Julie was instrumental in developing the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan and engaging the public in that process,” said Michelle T. Boone, Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. “Our heartfelt congratulations to Julie. This is a tremendous opportunity for her, and she will do a wonderful job.”

“I am so thrilled to be joining Mayor Walsh’s team and look forward to putting all my experience to work for the people of Boston,” said Julie Burros. “Boston has great potential in the arts world, and this is a unique opportunity to examine all of Boston’s cultural assets and align them with Mayor Walsh’s vision to make arts and culture a key piece across all City departments.”

Burros led the creation of the Chicago Cultural Plan 2012, which was awarded the Burnham Award for Excellence in Planning from the Metropolitan Planning Council, and is leading its implementation. In addition, in her current role she acts as a liaison between the arts community and regulatory City departments resolving issues with zoning, licensing, permitting, and building codes; visions the redevelopment of vacant spaces in the City for arts uses, and supports Chicago’s cultural districts. Her signature work in Chicago includes the 2009 Burnham Plan Centennial Pavilions in Millennium Park and the Chicago Cultural Landscape survey of 2002.

Burros did her undergraduate work at the college at the University of Chicago, majoring in sociology, and did her graduate work at Columbia University at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, with a focus on planning for the built environment.

As Chief of Arts and Culture for the City of Boston, Burros will oversee a staff of 9 housed within the Boston Arts Commission and the Boston Cultural Council, with a budget of $1.3 million. The Chief position has an annual salary of $125,000, and also includes oversight of the Boston Public Library system. The Arts + Culture cabinet was created by Mayor Walsh to elevate arts and culture by separating it from the previous administration’s Office of Arts, Tourism, and Special Events.

Pulling from her experience working on the Chicago Cultural Plan, Burros will steer Boston’s 15-member Cultural Planning Committee through Boston’s cultural planning process. The Plan will be shaped by a public conversation with the goal of creating a long-term vision that better capitalizes on existing resources and makes the City’s arts and culture creative portfolio stronger, more accessible, more sustainable, and more diverse. Burros will promote and execute the final plan, secure resources, and oversee its implementation and evaluation. In addition, she will be tasked with ensuring that all relevant City programs are aligned with the Plan.

In addition as Chief, Burros will work to create a vehicle through which the City can increase diversity and inclusion in the arts, seek grants and sponsorship opportunities, and secure funding and support for Boston’s arts community. Burros will seek to grow the arts in Boston across disciplines, from theater to dance, to the visual arts to public art.

The Arts and Culture Chief search committee included 11-members, and was led by Joyce Linehan, Mayor Walsh’s Chief of Policy.

Committee Members:

Kathy Bitetti, Artist

Patricia Boyle-McKenna, Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics

David Dower, ArtsEmerson

Michael Evans, Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics

Danny Green, Mayor’s Office

Vineet Gupta, Boston Transportation Department

Para Jayasinghe, Public Works Department

Jill Medvedow, Institute of Contemporary Art

Charlayne Murrell-Smith, Children’s Museum

Lois Roach, playwright/teacher

Miguel Rodriguez, Boston Baroque




Friday, September 19, 2014 Call to Boston Public Schools Artists: First Night Button Art

First Night

Call to Boston Public Schools Artists: First Night Button Art


The Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture and First Night Boston invite students currently enrolled in Boston Public Schools to submit original artwork to be the visual identity of the 2015 First Night Boston festival of the arts. The winning selection will be featured on the official 2015 First Night button; on the program guide; on posters, print, broadcast ads, and more. The selected artist will also receive a $500 stipend.

The artist with the winning selection must be available for interviews with print and broadcast media. Each student may submit one artwork for consideration.  Find the application here


Tuesday, September 16, 2014 Sun Boxes:temporary art installations

Sun Boxes by Craig Colorusso 

TIME FRAME: Thursday, September 18, 2014 - Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sun Boxes are travailing solar powered sound installation. It’s comprised of twenty speakers operating independently, each powered by the sun via solar panels. There is a different loop set to play a guitar note in each box continuously. These guitar notes collectively make a Bb chord. Because the loops are different in length, once the piece begins they continually overlap and the piece slowly evolves over time.

The scheduled installation dates for Sun Boxes are as follows:

Copley Square, Thursday, September 18, 10:30 am-sundown

Dewey Square, Rose Kennedy Greenway, Friday, September 19, 10:30 am-sundown

Boston Common, Saturday, September 20, 10:30 am-sundown

The Children's Museum, Fort Point, Sunday, September 21, 10:30 am-sundown



Monday, September 15, 2014 Boston Cultural Council accepting applications for 2015 grant funding cycle

BOSTON – The Boston Cultural Council (BCC) is now accepting applications for its 2015 grant funding cycle. Under the umbrella of the Mayor’s Office of Arts + Culture, the BCC annually distributes funds allocated by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, to support innovative arts, humanities, and interpretive sciences programming that enhances the quality of life in Boston.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh has committed to matching the funds provided by the Massachusetts Cultural Council for the 2015 grant funding cycle from the City of Boston’s budget. The BCC’s budget for Fiscal Year 2015 is $163,080, a 6% increase of $11,060 over Fiscal Year 2014.

“This additional resource will enable the BCC to approve a greater number of grant applications than in year's past,” says Mayor Walsh. “These grants support a wide variety of artistic projects and activities in Boston, including exhibits, festivals, field trips, short-term artist residences or performances in schools, workshops, and lectures.”

Applications and guidelines are available online at: Applications will be accepted in the following categories: Music, Film and Video, Traditional and Folk Arts, Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance, Humanities, Literary Arts, Multi-discipline, and Field Trips.

Grant information workshops will be held in the Commonwealth Salon at the Boston Public Library on Friday, September 19, and Friday, October 3, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The deadline for applications is Wednesday, October 15, at 5:00 p.m.

The BCC is comprised of 13 Boston residents appointed by Mayor Walsh to serve for up to six years each. The BCC annually reviews applications during a series of fall meetings conducted to evaluate the overall quality of proposed programming and its potential benefit to diverse audiences in neighborhoods throughout Boston. 

The BCC’s grantees will be announced in January 2015. For additional information on the Boston Cultural Council, visit .



Monday, September 8, 2014 R Visions for Chinatown: CALL TO ARTISTS Deadline September 19, 2014

The Wong/Yee Gallery of the Chinese Progressive Association is excited to announce a new call to artists.

The project, entitled R Visions for Chinatown, will be a one-week series of temporary art interventions in Boston’s Chinatown sited on or highlighting public parcels or vacant properties with potential for community development.

Artists working in any medium are welcome to apply. Priority will be given to concepts for projects that focus on the theme of stabilizing Chinatown’s future. To apply, please submit a Letter of Interest (LOI) to the Wong/Yee Gallery by Friday, September 19, 2014.

Following initial submissions of an LOI, selected artists will participate in a community planning session to be held on the evening of Thursday, September 25th, in which Chinatown residents can talk with artists about their goals and visions for the future of Chinatown. Following the planning session, artists will begin production on a project which expresses or conveys these visions.

Projects may include but are not limited to paintings, prints, posters, chalk murals, structural installations, projections, or performance pieces. Proposals should closely consider the relationship between the art and its environment and should promote interactivity with passersby. Selected proposals will receive funding of up to $1,000 per project.

R Visions for Chinatown will be scheduled as a week of public art in Chinatown to run for a seven-day period, from October 19 - 25, 2014. 

Proposed sites for art intervention include:

PARCEL 24 (site of the One Greenway development currently in construction on Hudson Street)

PARCEL A (site of the Josiah Quincy Upper School on Washington Street)

PARCEL 12 (parking lot between Tremont and Washington Streets near the Double Tree Hotel)

PARCEL R1 (parking lot on Tyler Street south of Kneeland Street, former site of the old Chinatown YMCA)

CHINA TRADE CENTER at 2 Boylston Street (corner of Boylston & Washington Street)


Please send your LOI, along with links to previous work and any additional questions to: For more information, please visit

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 Mayor Martin J. Walsh and Boston Art Commission Name George Fifield of Boston Cyberarts to Board
Mayor Martin J. Walsh and Boston Art Commission Name George Fifield of Boston Cyberarts to Board


George Fifield black&white


BOSTON – Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Boston Art Commission have named George Fifield, the Founder and Director of Boston Cyberarts, to its Board for a five-year term. Nominated by the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, George Fifield is the first board member to fill the new seat on the Boston Art Commission, which was recently expanded from a five-member to a nine-member board.


“George brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Board of the Boston Art Commission,” said Mayor Walsh. “His broad understanding of digital arts and media is perfectly aligned with our strong support for public art and artists. George will be a tremendous asset to both the Boston Art Commission and the City of Boston.”

“I want to thank Mayor Walsh and the Boston Art Commission for this exciting opportunity,” said George Fifield. “I look forward to helping to bring innovative and contemporary public art to Boston.”

Fifield is a media arts curator, writer, teacher, and artist. He is the founder and director of Boston Cyberarts, Inc. (, a nonprofit arts organization, which produced the biennial Boston Cyberarts Festival and currently manages The Boston Cyberarts Gallery inside the Green Street MBTA station on the Orange line. Fifield is a long-time Jamaica Plain resident.

The Boston Cyberarts Festival celebrated a long tradition of technological and artistic innovation throughout Massachusetts from 1999 through 2011. The festival showcased artists and high-technology professionals from around the world who use new technology to advance traditional visual and performing arts disciplines.

Boston Cyberarts also works on a variety of special projects in Boston, including Art on the Marquee ( in partnership with the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority.

Boston Cyberarts, the National Park Service, and Boston Harbor Islands Alliance are also collaborating on an ongoing project to commission public algorithmic art for display on the LED screens at the park Welcome Center on the Greenway between Faneuil Hall and the Ferry Ticket Center on Long Wharf.

From 1993 to 2006, Fifield was curator of new media at the DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park in Lincoln, MA. He was executive co-producer for The Electronic Canvas, an hour-long documentary on the history of the media arts. Produced by the DeCordova Museum for WGBH-TV, The Electronic Canvas aired in April 2000 in Boston and subsequently was in national PBS distribution. Fifield is also executive producer for the feature length comedy Made-Up, written and produced by his wife, Lynne Adams.

In addition, Fifield has written on a variety of media, technology and art topics for Artbyte, Bomb, Communication Arts, Digital Fine Arts, The Independent Film and Video Monthly, Sculpture Magazine, and Art New England. Among his numerous curatorial efforts, he co-curated the computer installation art show, The Computer Is Not Sorry at the Space in January 1993 and in May 1999, he co-curated Mind Into Matter, the first international survey show of new digital sculpture at the Computer Museum in Boston.

Fifield has taught at a number of institutions on New Media subjects. Presently he is adjunct faculty with the Digital Media program at Rhode Island School of Design where he teaches a graduate level course on Interactivity in the Fine Arts. He has lectured at Harvard University, Brandeis University, Massachusetts College of Art, University of California Los Angeles, University of Tampa, and many others.

Fifield is also a member of VideoSpace, which he founded in 1991. VideoSpace, a project of Boston Cyberarts Inc., is a collective of media artists who have organized and presented exhibitions of video art at The Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, the Mobius performance space in Boston, the Harvard Film Archives at Harvard University and produced shows for the Public Access Television Consortium of Eastern Massachusetts and arts organizations throughout New England. His own art videos have been exhibited at the Dallas Art Museum, the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans, The Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, and the International Super 8 Film and Video Festival in Brussels, Belgium among others.

In 2006, Fifield was honored with the First Annual Special Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Boston Arts Community by the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) Boston Chapter.

Boston Art Commission’s current Board members can be found at

For additional information about the Boston Art Commission, visit  

Monday, August 25, 2014 (ähts): The Boston Arts Festival

Please join us for (ähts): The Boston Arts Festival, August 30th and 31st, featuring the best of the Boston art scene with visual, musical, and performance art, as well as food trucks and fireworks!

RSVP and read full descriptions at 


Saturday, August 30th

12:00 - 12:45: TBA
1:00 - 1:45 City Stage Co.
2:00 - 2:45 Origination
3:00 - 3:45 Los Rumberso
4:00 - 4:45 J Hoard
5:00 - 5:45 Thalia Zedek Band
6:00 - 6:45 Nick Flynn 
Sunday, August 31st

1 :00 - 1:45 City Stage Co.
2:00 - 2:45 Grey Season 
3:00 - 3:45 Isis Lune
4:00 - 4:45 IntaAfrika
5:00 - 7:00 The Moth
+ Let's talk about BEAUTY... the Moth Story Hour will be performing true stories based on the theme of beauty. Watch and listen to a radio broadcast in action.


Visual Arts:

EAR1 Project with Brack Morrow

Inspired by NASA’s Curiosity rover mission to Mars, the EAR1 Project (Earth Aural Rover) deploys sculptural objects built from musical instruments to resemble machines of science. Through the interplay of these hybrid apparatuses, the EAR1 Project performs missions of exploration, traversing the terrain of city and countryside alike, making recordings, taking photos, shooting video, and performing compositions in a collaboration between artists, scientists, musicians and nature.

Please stop and join artist Brack Morrow in a conversation about listening to environment.


Boston Contemporary Art Museum For Contemporary Art, Artists, And Their Contemporaries with Pat Falco and various artists

Boston Contemporary Art Museum For Contemporary Art, Artists, And Their Contemporaries is a contemporary art museum for Boston contemporary art, artists, and their contemporaries.


Water Graffiti with Mike Mei and Shaw Pong Liu

Guided public water calligraphy play area, introducing public to writing of Chinese characters and encouraging them to create their own symbol for peace. 


Up Truck with Cedric Douglas

Join Cedric Douglas and the Up Truck for painting, t-shirt making, and other interactive art making activities. Who wouldn't want a wearable souvenir to commemorate the last (and best) weekend of summer?


These Words Matter with Helina Metaferia

Trade card catalogues with Helina! The local artist will be in costume in this participatory performance art piece, inviting passerbys to engage in a dialogue about African American authors. Share your favorite books, get suggestions for a reading list, and make your own wearable art!


RSVP and read full descriptions at