Downtown Durham Inc

Downtown Durham, Inc. Calls for Artists for Two Initiatives

Durham, N.C. – Downtown Durham, Inc. has launched a call for artists for two initiatives that will activate downtown spaces. The first, Public Space Project, features cutting-edge art and is in its second year after a successful pilot in 2018. The second initiative, Art About, is a new project that focuses on interactive, family-friendly installations that will take place quarterly during Third Fridays. The Art About and Public Space Project call application deadline has been extended to July 15.

“We’re delighted to not only bring back Public Space Project this year but to expand on DDI’s art offerings with our new program, Art About,” said Nicole J. Thompson, DDI president and CEO. “Art About will feature accessible, fun projects like chalk art and participatory music to entice families to join us for Third Fridays.

“We encourage artists of every kind to respond to the calls. From performance artists to chefs, documentarians, poets and musicians, we’d like to present a rich and varied art experience. Art adds to downtown’s cultural vibrancy, attracts foot traffic that helps our businesses thrive and keeps us true to our diverse Durham roots. It is crucial to creating a downtown for everyone.”

Both Public Space Project and Art About will follow the model used last year, with DDI funding 75% of each project up to $2,000, and a committee that includes members of the local art ecosystem selecting the winning projects. Rachel Wexler, special projects manager and lead on both PSP and Art About, will host walk-in office hours at various downtown venues to answer any questions artists may have prior to submitting an application.

Artists can meet with Wexler on June 3, 8 – 9 a.m. at Beyu Caffe; June 6, 12 noon – 1 p.m. at The Durham Hotel lobby; or June 11, 6 – 7 p.m. at Cocoa Cinnamon on Geer St. Wexler is also available by email at rachel@downtowndurham.comor by phone at 919.682.2800 ext. 27.


Important Dates

July 15, 2019 – Applications due – EXTENDED

July 29, 2019 – Grantees notified of acceptance

June 30, 2020 – All granted projects completed

For more information about Public Space Project or Art About, visit

Apply for Public Space Project Apply for Art About

For 25 years, Downtown Durham, Inc. has been theeconomic development engine for downtown Durham, NC. With more than $1.8 billion in investment since 2000, downtown Durham is home to more than 60 retail stores, 100 restaurants and bars, and 3,500 residential units – all in an area just under one square mile. As the entity responsible for the business improvement district, DDI provides resources to keep downtown Durham clean and safe, and to attract visitors and residents to downtown businesses, venues and events. For more information, visit



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