Salem Public Art
Salem, Massachusetts, United States
The City of Salem, Salem Public Art Commission, and the Charlotte Forten Memorial Project Advisory Committee are seeking artists/artist teams to create a site-specific commemorative artwork in the form of a life-size/slightly larger-than-life, figurative bronze statue in the likeness of Charlotte Forten Grimké to serve as a memorial in honor of her life and legacy. Once completed, the work will be located in Charlotte Forten Park, 289 Derby Street, Salem, Massachusetts.
The public art competition is open to all interested artists and artists teams at least 18 years old and residents of the United States. Artists and artists teams that identify as Black, Indigenous, or People of Color (BIPOC) and female are strongly encouraged to apply. Local artists or artists teams who live or work in Salem or the North Shore are strongly encouraged to apply.
The artist selection process will happen in two phases:
• Phase 1: National ‘Call for Artists’ to submit qualifications & the selection of semi-finalists
• Phase 2: Semi-finalist artists/artist teams to submit concepts & selection of final awardee
Charlotte Louise Bridges Forten Grimké
Charlotte Louise Bridges Forten Grimké, born in 1837, the daughter of Robert Bridges Forten and Mary Woods Forten, wealthy Blacks in Philadelphia, was the fourth generation of her family born free. The Forten’s success did not protect them from racist insults and bigotry, however. They financially supported and were actively involved in the Philadelphia abolitionist movement, and included among their friends and associates the likes of Frederick Douglas and William Lloyd Garrison. Passionate debate on the issues of the day took place in Charlotte’s presence as a child and nurtured her commitment to education, freedom, women’s rights, and racial equality. These pillars formed her lifelong mission.