Interested in creating public art in Boston?

Why am I completing this form?

The Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture and the Boston Art Commission believe that public art is any artwork installed in publicly accessible spaces where they can be experienced by everyone for free. In order to install art on public property, you will need approval from the Boston Art Commission and the department that owns the site. 

Complete this form to start the approval process! Once you submit your application, the public art team will be in touch but you can reach out to us with questions at anytime! Please email us at 


Please check out our website to see calls to artists and other opportunities! This form is not an application for funding but there are a couple of different options for finding funding through the city. You can also apply for the Opportunity Fund.

Artist Housing Certification Guidelines

What is an Artist Certificate? 

An Artist Housing Certificate is a letter from Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture. The letter confirms that the artist has been active in their artistic practice in the past three years. An Artist Housing Certificate qualifies an artist as eligible for artist live/work housing and some work space in Boston. The Artist Housing Certification is valid for a period of eight years. Upon expiration, the artist will need to reapply to receive a new Artist Housing Certification. The Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture keeps a list of all spaces for artists in the City of Boston, whether they require the Artist Certification or not. Review those spaces here. The Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture does not maintain a waitlist for these spaces and is not able to confirm when these spaces will become available.

Who is eligible for an Artist Housing Certification?

Applicants must able to demonstrate that they have a recent body (last three years) of artwork and must be at least 18 years of age. Artists in the following disciplines are considered:

  • Visual Arts: including painting, printmaking, sculpture, photography, conceptual art, craft arts (ceramics, woodworking, jewelry, etc.), architecture/design (not including engineering and home staging), media arts, film, and new media.
  • Performing Arts: including dance, theater, and music.
  • Literary Arts: including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and spoken word.
  • Multidisciplinary Art

If you are a commercial artist who has an office space to do your work, and/or works for a company instead of for yourself (sole proprietor) we require examples of your personal fine art to ensure that you need an artist space for your artistic work. This is also the case for artists who are employed full-time in other industries.

Who reviews the applications?

The Artist Resource Manager in the Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture reviews applications.

The decision of the Artist Resource Manager is final. If an applicant is not certified during this round, it is because they were not able to convey that they have been actively making art in the past three years through their application.

Applications will be reviewed based on the following criteria.

  • Evidence of a recent body of work (last three years), demonstrated by an artistic resume or CV that lists dates and locations of exhibitions, publications, performances, press, awards, artist residencies, jobs held in arts discipline field, and formal training if you have it.
  • Documentation of artwork (or "work samples) including image files, video clips, and writing samples. Files must be dated or they will not be considered. 
  • One reference letter of support from peers and professionals in the arts who can confirm you have been active in your artistic practice over the past three years.

When are applications accepted?

Applications for the Artist Certification are reviewed every other month. Please check out website to see when we will be reviewing applications.

When will I hear back about the status of my application?

Use the link above to check when we will be reviewing applications.

What is Automatic Certification?

Automatic certification is granted to artists who have received any of the following awards in the last 3 years: the Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship, The Boston Foundation Brother Thomas Fellowship, the Boston Cultural Council Artist Fellowship, or the City of Boston Emerging Artist Award.

To receive automatic certification, please fill out your name and contact information in the Artist Housing Certification application and upload your fellowship letter in the Work Samples section. Letter must prove reception of award in the past three years.

The Strand Theatre serves as a cultural and educational resource to artists and audiences, regardless of race or cultural background, age, ability, gender, economic level, or sexual orientation. Please complete the application below based on your rental needs.

Please note: The first quote for your event is an estimate only. A final quote cannot be completed until all technical information and production schedule are complete and reviewed by the Strand Technical Director and General Manager. All forms and schedules must be reviewed no later than 60 days prior to your event.

Things to know before you apply:


Tickets may be produced through the Strand Theatre's box office (fees apply). Renters may print their own tickets and have the right to sell tickets at a third party location, however tickets cannot be sold until the following are completed:

  • Lease application
  • Signed contract
  • Insurance certificate
  • Copy of headliner signed contract with the organization (if applicable)


Lessee must provide their own liability insurance. They must obtain either a one day entertainment policy (coverage of one million of liability minimum) or a rider from their existing policy. Insurance must list additional insured as the Strand Theatre - location and venue Strand Theatre, 543 Columbia Rd, Dorchester, MA. 02125

Hip Hop, hard rock performances, and sporting events are not covered under standard liability. A copy of secured insurance must be provided at least 30 days in advance. Failure to provide an accurate genre description of your event or artist roster will result in an automatic termination of your event.

If service of liquor is approved for your event, you must apply for a one day liquor license from the City of Boston and apply for liability coverage at least 60 days prior to your event. Service must be by a licensed bartender. This coverage is only applicable provided the venue has not obtained coverage and is not operating a house bar. Lessee will provide 2 copies of all permits and licenses. Lessee may obtain liquor services from a catering company that has a traveling liquor liability license and tip certified bartender for service (this is the best option).

Event Security

Security guards are booked based on the number of patrons expected and the type of performance. Changes to booking must be completed at least two weeks prior to the event. Boston Police details are booked on the same criteria and are at the discretion of management (and in some instances, the Boston Police Department). Management reserves the right to add additional security staff during an event at the Lessees' expense. Laminates or optional pre-approved staff recognition badges are required for Lessees' event staff. In addition, a list of all approved backstage staff employed by Lessee and Artist/Performers must be provided.

Advertisement and Website

Events will be linked on the Strand Theatre website at no cost to Lessee. All clients advertising a ticketed event must also create an event listing on the ArtsBoston calendar and send it to us prior to the event. Events will be listed on a revolving marquee with all other scheduled events. Please provide a description of your event and send a flier, photo or image for the website. Other than the above mentioned advertisement and listing, The Strand is not responsible for any additional advertisement, media, print or video marketing of the Lessee’s event.


It is at the discretion of the Lessee to allow video/audio or photos. All photography stations must not obstruct patron aisles or handicap seating. All cables and wiring running on or through walkways, stairs or entrances, must be secured and taped down properly. Please discuss set up area requirements with the Technical Director. Bring extra gaffing tape and/or walkway covers to prevent cancellation of use.

Event Merchandise Sales

The Strand has 10 2x6 folding tables and 50 folding chairs for use during events. The rental of additional tables and chairs are the Lessee’s responsibility. You must supply all table cloths.

Merchandise sales may include CDs, DVDs, clothing, photos, and books. If approved, any edible items require a one day vendor’s license and health permit, obtained from City Hall. All food vendors must be pre-approved by the Strand General Manager. Two copies of all paperwork must be submitted one week prior to the event. Food items must be wrapped individually and gloves and head nets must be worn at all times. Vendor food items allowed - cupcakes, specialty cookies and other pre-approved baked goods associated with the event. There is a power source to assist with the selling of merchandise and all extension cords must be supplied by vendors.

There is a $25.00 fee, per station required for the sale of any and all merchandise, by Lessee and/or Lessee’s vendors. It must be in the form of a bank check or money order, made out to the Strand Theatre. All fees apply unless waived by the Strand General Manager.


Allowed decorations include: balloons, free standing displays, posters, photographs, informational displays, literature tables, approved banners, and flowers. Drapery/fabric is permitted only if they meet safety/fire codes for the venue. You must provide a copy of all current fire retardant certificates for these items.

The gallery space has hanging lips for artwork and 12 picture hanging rods. Lessee/ its vendors must get pre-approval before any items are affixed to the walls. Due to the age of the plaster on walls you cannot nail or tape items to the walls. Please discuss all decoration ideas for pre-approval.

Event Catering

Organizations can provide catering for the event, which can include full meals. Lessee may use any licensed catering company of their choice. Caterers must provide a copy of all current licenses, fire permits and insurance if applicable and follow all safe serve and food handling requirements for transporting, service and staffing. The Strand does not have a working kitchen space for catering, therefore catering companies providing food service must be completely mobile.

Event Sound

Please refer to the Strand Technical Specifications for house sound equipment.

All wires and cables running throughout walkways, stair and public traffic must be taped down with gaffing tape and/or portable cable walkways. A charge of $35.00 per roll for gaffing tape will apply, if supplied by the Strand. (No exception) This amount will be collected from Lessee prior to the show.

All optional microphones such as body and head microphones must be rented by Lessee. The Strand can supply a vendor contact if needed, but will not be responsible for pick-up and return. The Strand is not responsible for poor sound quality or damages to rented microphones.  Lessee is responsible for providing AAA batteries for each wireless mic required. Fresh batteries for each mic will be required for each performance.

Event Lighting & Scene Requirements

Please refer to Strand Technical Specifications for house lighting equipment provided in the Technical packet.

Basic color washes are available through our technical team. Any color not in the house supply may be supplied with advance notification. Please allow adequate time to restore all house equipment back to its original place after removing it for special lighting and/or sound equipment. Soft Goods: The Strand has a main curtain and valance, three (3) panels of black borders, three (3) sets of black legs, one (1) scrim, one (2) panels Upstage travelers(1) one Cyc and (1) one movie screen for front throw movie projection or color wash . The Strand does not provide rigging /flying hardware other than the line sets available. (See Strand Technical Specifications) We do not provide general construction hardware to organizations nor do we have an area or maintain supplies to build sets in house. It is the Lessee’s responsibility to ensure safe hardware usage and maintenance and to maintain all scenic pieces including fire retardant certificates. Fire certificates must be provided for all upholstered furniture and set design fabrics being used on stage. *** Please allow at least 60 days to complete the Fire Certificate process. Applications are available online through Fire Dept. or at 1010 Massachusetts Ave.

The use of hazing requires fire details and auto-system shut off monitor. The number of marshals is based on the number of patrons and the rate is based on the detail marshal's position rank. Additional fees include fire system monitor turn off/on ($640), truck fee ($50), 7am – 3 pm $130 per hr. after 3 pm $190 per hr.., Sat $190 per hr., Sun $220 per hr. The use of hazing is a lengthy process and must be scheduled 90 days in advance. The Strand’s Fire System will need to be turned off one hour before show begins and remains off until all vapors have dissipated from the theater. A monitor remains at the system for the duration and is billed to Lessee directly. Average cost for hazing use on a weekend is $2500 up per day.

All application forms and permits can be found here:

You must know what kind of machine and chemicals you will be using and it cannot be changed once approved

Restoration Fee

It is the responsibility of the Lessee to allocate enough time in their schedule for load-out and to restore all Strand lighting & sound equipment, staging, and general building areas to the condition in which you received it or back to the Strand working condition if you requested anything removed for your event. Staff hours will be been scheduled and billed into your invoice. However, if additional time is needed due to your organization's failure to comply with restoral requirements, you will be charged a $300.00 restoral fee plus any staff hours required. A walkthrough must be done at the end of Load-out and restoral time, to assess completion and/or damages.


The City of Boston is seeking submissions for the annual Fay Chandler EMERGING Art Exhibition at Boston City Hall, a celebration of the Boston visual arts community. Artists that live, work, or create in the Greater Boston area are encouraged to submit their work for consideration.

Hosted by the Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture, the Fay Chandler EMERGING Art Exhibition will feature fresh, original and contemporary works of art created by Greater Boston area artists. The art will be displayed at Boston City Hall in the Scollay Square Gallery and other galleries November 15, 2023 - December 30, 2023. This year's ay Chandler EMERGING Art Exhibition will be curated and judged by the founders of *Juniper Rag, an art and lifestyle magazine.  

*Fay Chandler was a Boston philanthropist and advocate for the arts. As an artist who started her career later in life, she serves as the inspiration for this exhibition and to artists of all ages! Thank you Fay.

DEADLINE: October 27, 2023 at 11:59 p.m.


  • Best in Show: $2,500.00
  •  Over 50 award: $1500.00
  •  Started making art in the last three years: $1000.00

    * Prize winners from previous year's EMERGING art exhibition are ineligible to apply.

     The reception for the Fay Chandler EMERGING Art Exhibition will take place on Thursday, Nov. 30th from 6-7:30 p.m. in the Scollay Square Gallery, 3rd Floor, Boston City Hall.


       1. Artists must live, work, or create in Greater Boston.

       2. All work must be made in the last 3 years.

       3. Artists with commercial gallery representation are ineligible.

       4. Artists must be at least 18 years old.

       5. 2D art MUST be wired across the back, ready to hang & no larger than 36” in any dimension.

       6. 3D art must be no larger than 18” in any dimension.


       · All work will be displayed in the Scollay Square Gallery and other galleries as needed at Boston City Hall.

       · Artists are responsible for transporting their work.

       · All artists exhibit at their own risk. A waiver will be provided.

       · Artists selected for the exhibition will be notified by November 2, 2023.

       · Drop off of work selected will take place November 6 - 9, 2023.



*About Fay Chandler

In 1960, Fay Chandler was a 39-year-old mother of four who was unsure what to do with her life. She wanted to make a difference, but didn't know how. She was living in Brookline; her husband taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His passion was writing history. She wanted a passion of her own. As she enjoyed painting coffee mugs, she wrote away for a painting course offered on the back of a matchbook. Classes followed: first on Nantucket Island and later, more formally, at Boston's Museum School. 

In 1963, her husband accepted a job at Johns Hopkins University and the family moved to Baltimore. Fay applied and was accepted into the Hoffberger Graduate School at the Maryland Institute College of Art. After graduating in 1967, she opened a gallery in Baltimore's very blue collar Fell's Point neighborhood. In 1973, the family returned to New England when her husband accepted a professorship at Harvard Business School. Fay ventured into Boston's South End where a community arts center was struggling to find itself. She rented studio space and became a stalwart supporter of the new Boston Center for the Arts. 

In 1989, she used an inheritance to buy a long-decommissioned fire station in Brighton which she resurrected as artists' studios. As Fay aged and her inventory of paintings and sculptures grew, she realized she needed a creative way to place them. In 1994, she gathered a group of friends; together they developed the concept of an organization that would act as a broker between artists with art to give and social service organizations with walls to cover. The concept became a reality. The Art Connection was born a year later and has now expanded into nearly a dozen cities. 

Over the next 20 years, Fay continued to paint, holding three major retrospectives at the Cyclorama of the BCA. As her ability to give grew, so did her support of the arts and the underserved. Fay particularly believed in helping young people: as such she supported a vast array of arts programs throughout eastern Massachusetts. Fay Chandler died in Brighton on March 3, 2015. She was 92, a widow, living in her beloved Engine House in Brighton and still painting.  

- A. D. Chandler 


*About Juniper Rag 

In 2018, after decades of success working together, Payal Thiffault and Michelle May co-founded Atelier ID Global, a Massachusetts-based design and marketing agency. Because of their personal commitment to artists and the challenges they face, utilizing their skills in marketing with a design legacy and relationships in luxury paper and print, they founded Juniper Rag art and lifestyle magazine to elevate artists globally as they identified a new vehicle for marketing artists. 

Their mission is to elevate visual artists and creative businesses and introduce them to new global markets, while connecting collectors with accessible emerging, mid-level and seasoned professional artists. Juniper Rag celebrates contemporary visual arts and creative businesses — with eyes open to LGBTQIA+ and BIPOC artists. Juniper Rag has curated virtual and live shows as well and collaborated with galleries in Worcester and Boston to grow their reach. 

Boston AIR Continuity Support Funding


The Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture is seeking proposals from former Boston AIR participants working on projects incubated during their residency.

The budget is up to $9,999, artists may receive partial funding

The application opened on September 1, 2023 12:00 pm EDT.

The application closes on October 13, 2023 5:00 pm EDT.

                  This application is open to any former Boston Artist-in-Residence living or working in Boston.


The Boston Artist-In-Residence (AIR) Program is a City of Boston program that embeds artists in a City department with a City partner to collaboratively research, strategize, and create in that Department. It offers a program on civic art practice, a cohort to learn with, funding for materials, and a stipend. Artists bring their creative approaches and artistic expertise, while the City partners act as subject matter experts and bring their experience working in City systems. Together, they strive to create a community-engaged project that tests more caring approaches to City processes, policies, and practices.

In order to maintain the work begun at the City of Boston through Boston AIR, and to continue supporting the intended outcomes of the residency, the Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture is seeking proposals from former Boston AIR participants who need support to continue working on projects incubated during their residency.

What can you do with this grant?

You may use this grant for the following:

  • Hire a grant writer to help apply for additional funding
  • Hire a part-time assistant to provide administrative support
  • Pay for professional development workshops or conferences
  • Pay youth or subcontractors
  • Purchase materials
  • Other costs associated with continuing work from Boston AIR

Responsibilities and Scope: What we’ll expect from you

Funding recipients will be responsible for the following:

  • Sharing a final report including any related learnings, feedback, and documentation
  • Presenting at least once to the public about your project and process. The presentation format will be collaboratively determined with MOAC and could be a video, event, blog post, etc.
  • Using funds by the end of June 2024

Resources: What you’ll receive from us

Funding recipients will receive the following resources.

  • Up to $9,999 in funding
  • Access to MOAC communications team for support creating digital content and documentation
  • Check-ins with Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture

Selection Criteria: What we’re considering while reviewing your proposal

  • Does your proposal connect to previous residency work?
  • Does your proposal explain how the funds support your residency work or make it more sustainable?
  • Does your proposal involve a municipal partner? Is that partner clearly named in the proposal? Municipal includes but is not limited to:                                                                                               
    • Former Boston AIR City partner
    • New City of Boston department
    • State or federal agency
    • Does your proposal involve relevant community partners?
  • Do you have a track record of implementing and completing projects in a timely manner?

Proposal Requirements: What you’ll need to submit in your application

Please include the following in your proposals:               

  • What is your continuity support proposal?
  • How does this proposal connect to your previous residency work?
  • How will these funds support the growth of your practice as it relates to your residency work, or make your work more sustainable?
  • Budget with an outline of how you’re planning to allocate the funds
  • Diversity and inclusion plan                                                                                               
    • The City of Boston is committed to ensuring that vendors who work on the City’s behalf utilize procurement practices that are fully open to the inclusion of small and local businesses, including Small Local Business enterprises, Minority Business Enterprises, Woman Business Enterprises, and Veteran-Owned Small Business Enterprises. Please describe the efforts that you have taken, or will take, to ensure that your selection of subcontractors and suppliers for this contract will be meaningfully open to such companies. If you will not utilize subcontractors and suppliers on this particular contract, please describe any efforts or practices of your company over the past two years that demonstrate a practice of making subcontracting and supplier opportunities available to such companies. In describing your plan, please include specifics.
  •  References related to the work you are proposing (email and phone contact)      
City of Boston Arts and Culture