iamb is now accepting applications from curators for 2020.
Jan 4-Feb 29
Mar 7-May 2
May 9-Jul 4
Jul 11-Sep 5
Sep 12-Nov 7
Nov 14-Jan 9 (2021)
Please read the following specifications and direct all inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org. No curatorial or artist applications will be accepted by telephone.
Selection of work:
• The gallery will be a curated-only space. Curators will be either invited to direct shows or may apply by written proposal.
• Invited curators should submit a short, polished summary of the show stating the narrative and 2-3 images of the selected work before the show is green-lighted.
• Curator applications should include a letter of introduction, resume or list highlighting art experience, images of previously curated shows if applicable, and a show proposal indicating a narrative & 2-3 images of planned work. Please include dates of intended show. Previous curatorial experience is desired by not required.
• Artists fitting City Books requirements may also apply using the above criteria and will be referred to a curator for consideration.
• The space is essentially a cube. 5’ wide, 7’ deep, 8’ high (272 sq ft) and, as such, has its own “personality.” Therefore, the exhibition is more of a collaboration among curator, artist(s), and space.
• Not all wall space is fully functional; there are three doorways. One is a door jamb that leads into the space without an actual door. The other two have doors: One leads to the bathroom, the other to the store room. The doors are not usable space and cannot be blocked. Neither the bathroom nor the storeroom can be used as gallery space.
• The space is lit by one overhead fixture with three adjustable spotlights served by a dimmer switch.
What City Books will provide:
• An intimate, exhibition-ready space with walls, doors, and trim prepared & painted white. Floor will remain a consistent charcoal gray to further separate the space from the sales floor (green).
• Heavy promotion to an engaged customer base via marketing channels that include Facebook (1397), Twitter (672), Instagram (900), and email (647 subscribers with a 12-mo average open rate of 26%). The curator & artist(s) will also be featured on the City Books website. This might be in the form of bios and 1-2 photos; I haven’t sorted the website part out yet, but that content would probably remain evergreen and not be taken down. In the six months prior to Mar 2019, our website had an average of 964 visits per month from an average of 487 unique visitors.
• An opening or closing event with light food & non-alcoholic beverages paid for by City Books. City Books’ insurance doesn’t allow alcohol on the premises, whether served or BYOB. If the curator & artist(s) want to serve alcohol, they will need to provide CB with a 24-hr insurance certificate for alcohol consumption. These are available online for about $50. But, there are plenty of bar/brew pubs/restaurants nearby that would be delighted to host a post-party.
• Opening or closing events can be scheduled on Saturday evenings from 7:00-8:00 PM. There is also a possibility of scheduling a formal Artist(s) Talk during the exhibition run, but that will be determined solely by the existing CB events schedule. Artists and curators are always encouraged to speak informally at openings/closings.
• Shows will last 8 weeks unless otherwise noted. Regular gallery hours coincide with City Books business hours: Tue-Fri 11-6, Sat & Sun 12-5. Closed Mon.
Who & what CB is looking for:
• Curator(s) with strong networks and vision who can identify emerging, marginalized, and under-represented artists from the Pittsburgh/tri-state/surrounding Appalachian region (especially those struggling for recognition in their field due to race, gender, sexual orientation, geographic or socio-economic limitations or prejudices) in order to help build their own careers and the careers of individual artists.
• Artist(s) who have a story to tell and can tell it confidently and well. See curatorial criteria above. Prior exhibition experience is not required.
• Exhibitions are likely to be solo shows given the spatial restraints of the gallery but may be larger at the discretion of the curator. If more than one artist shows at a time at the direction of the curator, the group’s art should be thematically related or stimulate dialogue with the other work(s) concurrently shown. If curators are interested in curating multiple shows over time, each exhibition should be distinct in vision and tell a different story than ones the curators have directed in the past.
• City Books expects artists and curators to heavily promote their shows throughout their own networks. All email and marketing lists will remain under the sole control of their owners; there is no expectation of sharing proprietary information with City Books.
• Curators who are also artists will be prevented from curating their own work into a scheduled show, but may be included another show by someone else at a later date.
• Artist and/or curatorial statements should be prepared for each show. City Books reserves the right to edit those statements for clarity (i.e., grammar, mechanics, and punctuation) but is also happy to work with artists & curators on developing content, if so desired.
• Works should be for sale. The work will be priced according to a 70/20/10 (artist/curator/CB) split unless other arrangements have been made in writing in advance between the curator and the artist.
• All artwork must be removed from the gallery/bookstore on the Sunday following the show’s closing so the space can be prepared and turned around for the next show. City Books assumes no responsibility for artwork left beyond the run of the show.