About the Jorge and Darlene Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design

The Jorge and Darlene Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design celebrates and highlights the work of individuals who support, develop, and manage the incorporation of art into the design of places and spaces across the United States. This prize is designed to empower various stakeholders in the public art process and to create a powerful platform to develop greater national visibility and appreciation of the unique role that the arts play in shaping our experience of the built environment. It includes an annual prize that will be awarded on a rotating basis to an artist, an art administrator, or civic design professional. The goal of the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design is to celebrate one unique person for their locally implemented contributions that address community-driven goals through the integration of art into the built environment.

The Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design is named after the internationally recognized philanthropists, Jorge M. Pérez and his wife, Darlene Boytell-Pérez.

About the Jorge M. Pérez Family Foundation

The Jorge M. Pérez Family Foundation at The Miami Foundation fulfills the philanthropic vision of Jorge M. Pérez, chairman and CEO of The Related Group, and his family to develop South Florida as an exemplary world-class urban center. The family foundation promotes sustainable, inclusive, and just communities by supporting programs and organizations focused on arts and culture, health and well-being, education, environment, and economic development—with a particular preference for programs and organizations that could serve as models for other urban centers.

Americans for the Arts is thankful for their support and contribution. For more information, please visit www.jmperezfamilyfoundation.org.

Logo for the Jorge M. Perez Family Foundation

Jorge and Darlene Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design Goals

The goals of the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design are to:

  • Recognize artists, arts administrators, and civic design professionals who implement cross-sector work at the intersection of public art and civic design.
  • Support individuals in their continued work at the intersection of public art and civic design.
  • Enable individuals to purse arts-based work that is community-driven and community centered.
  • Contribute to a national dialogue on the role of art in the design and building of America’s communities by providing platforms of participation with artists, arts administrators, and civic design professionals.
  • Inspire the work of Americans for the Arts staff, board, and members.
  • Honor the philanthropic commitment of Jorge M. Pérez, chairman and CEO of The Related Group, his family, and their collective vision and belief in the power of art to transform the design of places and spaces across the United States in ways that add deep and meaningful dimension to our human experience of the built environment.

How does the prize work?

The Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design operates on a three-year cycle with each year focused to highlight one type of individual working at the intersection of public art and civic design. The cycle began in 2020 honoring an artist and rotates on the cycle outlined below based on current funding.

2020 – Artist
2021 – Arts Administrator
2022 – Civic Design Professional
2023 – Artist
2024 – Arts Administrator

The cycling of applicant types aims to both highlight the different kinds of individuals who do public art and civic design work throughout the country and allow for alterations in the application process to ensure the review process is accessible to the different perspectives of artists, arts administrators, and civic design professionals.

The application process is open to anyone who meets the application eligibility criteria (see below). The application process runs from January to March with the selected recipient identified in May. The timeframe for the prize is generally from May to April.

Applications for the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design may be submitted by the individual seeking the award or be nominated by a third party. Third party nominators must work with the nominee to complete and submit the application. Only submissions received through the online application process will be reviewed. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

There is no cost to apply for the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design.

A jury composed of representatives from Americans for the Arts, Jorge M. Pérez Family Foundation, and other experts in public art and civic design select the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design recipient each year.

Who is the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design for?

This award celebrates and highlights artists, arts administrators, and civic design professionals who have a track record of exemplary work in relationship-building and producing with intention arts-based processes and/or projects that address community-driven goals that effect the built environment.

For example, individuals highlighted through this prize could be an artist who works with a community to create a permanent artwork as part of a transportation project, an urban planner who manages an artist-in-residency program within a city planning department, or an arts administrator who facilitates a long-term relationship between artists and a community to build engagement in the development of land in a neighborhood.

For this prize, an artist is identified as an individual who uses their artistic practice to work with communities in connection with addressing local goals for the implementation of positive change in the built environment. This includes public artists, community-based and socially engaged artists, artist-activists, culture bearers, and teaching artists working in out-of-school community contexts.

An arts administrator who may be considered for this prize is someone who coordinates and implements arts-based processes or projects to address community-driven civic design goals. This includes public art administrators as well as arts producers within local arts agencies, governmental agencies, museums, arts centers, and community-based and socially engaged arts organizations working in out-of-school community contexts.

A civic design professional is identified as someone who primarily works in planning, transportation, or land use development and leverages arts-based practices or projects to address community-driven goals.

We recognize that art is often a collective process, and that its full realization rarely rests on a single individual. Individuals working in organizational contexts are considered as well as those working independently. Organizational contexts may include public art programs, artist collectives, local arts agencies, municipal agencies, public-private partnerships, community-based nonprofits, and arts-based community groups or organizations.

What is the Prize?

Prize recipients will receive a $30,000 cash award that can be used to continue their pursuit of their work aligned with goals of utilizing the arts to intersect with the built environment and address community goals.

The recipient will also gain access to other national opportunities for further learning as well as dialogue and discussion about their work with national leaders in the arts and other allied fields. These activities seek to create a platform for the recipient to share their experience and perspective with Americans for the Arts’ members, stakeholders, and national partners to advance national dialogue and discussion about the key role of public art and civic design. These activities will be of mutual value and will be determined jointly with Americans for the Arts. The activities estimate to take 5-7 days over the 12-month period of the prize timeframe. The timeframe for the prize is generally from May to April.

Eligibility and Selection Criteria

As artists, arts administrators, and civic design professionals approach the work of public art and civic design from different perspectives, the eligibility criteria may alter from year to year. However, general eligibility includes:

  • The individual has a track record of 10 or more years of consistent work at the intersection of public art and civic design.  
  • The individual is actively doing work relevant to the intent of the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design.
  • The individual is a U.S. citizen or resident and is at least 30 years old.
  • The individual is available for the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design timeframe.

Those ineligible to apply include:

  • Current staff, board members, advisory council members and committee members at Americans for the Arts, The Jorge M. Pérez Family Foundation, and The Related Group.
  • Individuals enrolled in undergraduate or graduate degree programs.
  • Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design jury selection panelists and recipients of Americans for the Arts awards from the past three years.

Selection Criteria

  • The individual has demonstrated experience and has made significant contributions to a community through their creative work or the support of creative work in the areas of planning, transportation, and/or land use development.
  • The individual is at a stage in their work when the visibility and opportunity afforded by the Pérez Prize in Public Art & Civic Design will meaningfully support their growth and recognition in the field.   
  • The processes and/or projects with which the individual has worked have created a positive impact as expressed by stakeholders and community members. Community may be defined by place, culture, population, or other bond such as concern for a particular issue. The individual may be one who has worked deeply in one community or who has worked in multiple communities.  
  • The artistic practices used demonstrates excellence in terms that:
    • Are relevant to and resonant for the community/communities within which the art is based.
    • Advance a meaningful purpose.
    • The projects the individual has worked on was available and accessible to the general public.
    • Allow for new possibilities for creative expression.
    • Demonstrate skill in and vision of execution.  
  • The individual is committed to engaging at a national level and with Americans for the Arts to meet mutual interests.
  • Toward the goal of cultural equity, selections over years will reflect diversity in terms of race/ethnicity, age, ability, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, geography, citizenship/ residency status, or religion.

Questions

If you have questions about the application process, please contact Public Art & Civic Design Senior Program Manager Patricia Walsh at [email protected].

All press and media inquiries should be directed to Director of Press and Media Relations Inga Vitols at [email protected].