Main Street Square Medicine Wheel Bench - Call for Proposals

Native artist sought for downtown Rapid City public art project


First Peoples Fund is part of a collaborative of Rapid City-based nonprofits that is seeking a Native artist affiliated with a South Dakota tribe to carve and/or sandblast a piece of granite located in the center of a Lakota medicine in front of Main Street Square in downtown Rapid City.

The stone to be carved is a large granite bench in front of the two granite spires at the intersection of Main and Sixth Streets. It is located in the center of a large Lakota medicine wheel made of colored concrete embedded in the walkway. An optional additional element at the artist’s discretion is carving a large granite boulder that is part of a Lucite wall near the central granite piece.

The artist will be selected by a committee made up of representatives from First Peoples Fund and Native POP Art Market and Cultural Celebration. The project is privately funded and the artist’s fee, to include all materials and fabrication costs, is $30,000.

“Masayuki Nagase, the sculptor who carved the 21 pieces of granite around Main Street Square that make up Passage of Wind and Water, did not include this stone in his project design because of its location in the medicine wheel,” explained Mary Bordeaux, chair of the selection committee, program manager for fellowships at First Peoples Fund, and a founding member of the Native POP organizing committee. “The artist selected for the project will develop a design that is considerate of this location as well as harmonizing with Masayuki’s work.”

This invitation is open to artists who generally work in 2-dimensional forms, as well as those who work in 3-D forms. Artists may propose 2-D designs that can be transferred to the stone/s through a sandblasting process.

The application can be found on the online system Submittables under Main Street Square Medicine Wheel Bench Call. Applications close Jan. 31, 2018. The selected artist will be notified in February. Work may begin on site in June and must be completed by September 1, 2018.

For more information about the project, please contact Mary Bordeaux, mary@firstpeoplesfund.org, or Anna Huntington, anna@firstpeoplesfund.org, at First Peoples Fund, 605-348-0324.