In 1978, the Chicago City Council unanimously approved the Percent for Art Ordinance, which stipulates that a 1.33% of the cost of constructing or renovating municipal buildings and public spaces be devoted to original artwork on the premises; it also stipulates that at least half of the commissions be awarded to Chicago area artists to provide opportunities to the local arts community. At that time, Chicago was one of the first municipalities, and the largest, to legislate the incorporation of public art into its official building program. Today, there are more than 200 similar programs throughout the United States, due in large part to the success of the Chicago ordinance.
The Public Art Program commissions each site-specific artwork through a community-based process. The program staff partners with aldermen, City agencies, and the Chicago artists' community to administer design competitions for the selection of artwork. The Public Art Program hosts a minimum of two meetings in the community to solicit suggestions for artists and types of artwork for consideration for each Percent for Art project.
Policy Statement for Public Art Proposals (PDF) - The City of Chicago, Department of Cultural Affairs policy statement for Public Art proposals.
Donation Proposal Form (PDF) - Form used to submit a proposal to donate art to the City of Chicago's public art collection. Please note, the City of Chicago does not accept donations of art from galleries or art dealers.