Request for Proposals

Share your ideas, share your art

Submit a Proposal for Art in the Woods


Proposal Deadline: March 31, 2023
Notification of Finalists: by April 14, 2023
Finalist Acceptance Contracts Issued: May 5, 2023
Installation: July 17-21, 2023 (Times TBD with Individual Artists)
Exhibit Opening: July 23, 2023
Exhibit Closing: October 8, 2023
De-installation: October 9-13, 2023 (Times TBD with Individual Artists)


This request for proposals (RFP) seeks proposals from artists for the design and creation of a public art piece that will be located at American Players Theatre. Artists should prepare a concept to be reviewed by the Art in the Woods Selection Committee.

About Art in the Woods:

For years, the tagline “Play in the Woods” has described the essence of APT. “Art in the Woods” builds on the audience experience by commissioning a series of art installations to be displayed on our 110 acres of woods and prairie. Art in the Woods will encourage exploration and increase audience engagement in a new way. Art in the Woods officially opens on Sunday, July 23, and runs through Sunday, October 8.

We plan to include pieces that are large in size and personality, pieces that make a statement, pieces worth talking about. Throughout the 11-week exhibit duration, there will be approximately 135 performances; each audience member (approximately 81,000) will also experience Art in the Woods.

Art in the Woods Themes:

Artists should create a piece that fits into one of these categories that are consistent with APT’s mission and programming:

What is a Classic: APT is a classical theater by definition and by our mission. But what defines a classic? It’s a question that APT’s artistic staff and core acting company wrestle with regularly, and it’s vital to explore with our audience as well. This category invites the artist to address this question through visual art, thus stimulating a new avenue of conversation for our audience.

Art is Nature is Art: For more than 40 years, APT has been inextricably linked to the woods in which we perform. Combining art and nature is part of APT’s essence. Artwork in this category will directly interface with and weave in the nature around it.

Our Common Humanity: APT’s mission is about doing plays that explore our common humanity. This category invites the artist to explore that mission with visual art, and hopefully spur conversation as a result.

Art Guidelines

Artists may submit design concepts or existing work for consideration.

Installation: As you compose your proposal, please consider how the work will be installed, including manpower, equipment needs, and an installation timeline. APT is not responsible for the damage. If an installation is damaged, APT has the right to take down the installation.

Viewing Hours: Art in the Woods will be open to the public during the theater’s box office hours, including before performances (hours can be found here). Electricity and lighting of the installations are not guaranteed for any of Art in the Woods pieces.

Location and Durability: The installations will all be located outdoors on the APT grounds and, therefore, must be able to withstand Midwest summer weather, e.g., high temperatures, rain, humidity, wind, etc. The structures must be stable and safe for public audiences and the environments in which they are placed, e.g., woods, prairies, and gravel pathways.

Interactive: It should be noted in the proposal whether or not a piece is interactive. The ability to interact may affect the piece’s placement on the APT grounds.

Stipend: Stipends will be agreed upon between artists and APT once the finalists are chosen. The total budget for artist stipends is approximately $15,000 and will be divided among 6-10 pieces.

Artists will receive 50% of the agreed-upon stipend in May after the final proposal has been approved and the letter of agreement signed. The remaining 50% of the stipend will be paid the week following Art in the Woods opening. At the conclusion of the Art in the Woods exhibit, the installation will remain the property of the artist. The stipend covers all aspects of the artist’s participation, including design, creation, materials, installation, transportation, de-installation, etc.

Submission Requirements

  1. Resume (no longer than 2 pages)
  2. Artist Statement/Letter of Intent: 300 Words Maximum: An introduction to you and how Art in the Woods Speaks to you. Please include which theme you have chosen, why that particular theme speaks to you and the process and materials you plan on using in the creation of your piece.
  3. Conceptual Design
  4. Project Budget
  5. Material List
  6. Work timeline (design to installation)
  7. 2-5 Work Samples Images

Submission Guidelines:

Email a completed PDF of the proposal to:

Hannah Jo Anderson, Marketing Associate – [email protected]

Materials will be sent to the Art in the Woods Selection Committee by Hannah Anderson. All questions should also be directed to Hannah Anderson at the above email.