Use the tools that make it easy to find and hire the best artist for your commission
Post an RFP
No budget? This is a good place to start. Tell the world about your commission opportunity by posting to our RFP Listings. FREE
The best solution to streamline the commission process! Use our digital tools to announce your commission, organize applications, and move through to final artist selection.
The whole process is done for you. From initial concept to artist selection, our dedicated CODAworx RFP Specialist will handle all of the details, tailoring the solution to fit your needs.
Need help on your next project?
Post an RFP:
There's an ocean of talent out there.
- No budget? This is a good place to start. Post your RFP/RFQ for free to the largest listing of commissioned art opportunities.
- We provide a simple form that walks you through the listing process.
- Your project will be published online for our leading artists from around the world.
- Listings can be filtered by location, budget, deadline, and more.
High-powered software for commissioning artists
Three simple tools that work together to streamline the process for public and private projects.
1) RFP Blast
Blast out your RFP to artists and designers
Select the categories of creative professionals you want to reach with our targeted RFP Blast email tool.
2) RFP Manage
Manage application materials in one place
Applicants submit materials online and our RFP Manage tool automatically organizes everything for you.
3) RFP Select
Review and evaluate applications
Provide your selection committee with an easy-to-use structure to score applications using RFP Select.
1) RFP Blast:
Blast out your RFP to artists and designers
- We send your RFP email announcement twice, targeting up to 17,000 international artists and designers by profession and medium.
- Only CODAworx is connected to leading artists from all over the world, artists who make magic and transform spaces, on time and on budget.
- Why? Over 30 years of experience and building trust in the commissioned art community. Since 1985, our founders have amassed unmatched industry knowledge of the commissioning process.
- The RFP Blast tool can be purchased independent of other tools to reach out to CODAworx artists and expand your pool of qualified applicants.
2) RFP Manage:
Manage application materials in one place
- Have your applicants apply through RFP Manage, our online application management tool.
- From day one, visually consistent portfolios show all critical applicant information on one screen. Send a link to allow multiple viewers to review submissions online in real time prior to your committee meeting.
- No more need to spend hours organizing application materials and compressing different image sizes to fit into a presentation.
- Applications can be reviewed in the RFP Manage tool online at the convenience of your stakeholders.
3) RFP Select:
Select the best candidates
- Use our digital structure that moves you and your selection committee through the selection process.
- Give your committee members unique logins so they can review applicants in advance in their own time.
- Set weighted criteria or review with a simple yes/no/maybe to narrow the pool and choose your finalists
- Create as many rounds as you need to narrow down your applicant pool.
The comprehensive solution
- Want us to do the work for you? We can do that too. Our RFP Services team is here to oblige with a custom package.
- From start to finish, we handle all of the details of the RFP process, working closely with your stakeholders and decision makers.
- Resulting in amazing art commissions that meet your vision and goals.
Fans and users of the RFP Toolkit:
Find Commissions through CODAworx
CODAworx RFP Listings
Start here. View the largest, carefully curated listings of commission opportunities. The projects are international, local, small, and large scale. Read a brief description of the private and public commissions happening today, save your favorites, and click to apply directly on a commissioner's website.
Apply on CODAworx
RFPs managed through the CODAworx RFP Toolkit can be applied to through our website. These RFPs are emailed to qualified artists and can be found in the RFP Listings with an "Apply" button to the right. Both Basic and Profile members can apply to these commissions for free and attach CODAworx project links to save time in the application process.
Weekly RFP Updates
CODAworx Creative and Industry Profile members are privy to new commissions first. You receive weekly email updates with the newest RFPs added to our Listings and Toolkit, and reminders of RFPs with a deadline in the next 7 days.
Have questions? Contact Member Services at (608) 467-3040 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
It's the hiring of an artist or creative team to create a piece of art or an art installation for a specific space - interior, architectural, or public area. Art commissions involve collaboration, because for the artist, making art is not simply about the work, but about working with others to enhance the space - resulting in more inspired and innovative environments.
RFP means "request for proposal." It is the process used by commissioners to find and hire an artist or creative team for a commissioned art project. Related international terms include a Call for Entries, Expressions of Interest (EOI), or Request for Tender (RFT).
The RFP process usually starts with a RFQ document, which is a “request for qualifications,” used to pre-qualify applicants. In the document a commissioner includes site details, budget, contact information, and the project objectives.
Applicants respond to the RFQ by submitting at a minimum a letter of interest, a resume/cv, and samples of past commissioned projects.
After reviewing the applications, a commissioner will then select a few artists or creative teams to submit a full proposal. At this point, artists are provided an honorarium to create a design proposal.
Benefits of starting with a RFQ:
- Attracts more artists since it's a simpler first step
- Saves time for the commissioner in reviewing full proposals later
That's a common early question. Often the very first question asked.
It's common to come into this process not knowing if it's the kind of project that costs $50,000 or $5 million. Often, people say they have no sense of the cost of the artwork they have in mind.
The solution: Use the CODAworx site and find artwork you like and see what those art commissions cost. You may learn that what you have in your budget is enough.
Again, this is a common question. Typically, for a larger commission, it will take the artist a year, and sometimes more. Sometimes the fabricators and foundries and industry resources factor into and extend that timeline.
Backing up from there, the selection process can be as short as 3 months. Typically 6 months. Never really more than 9 months.
If it's new construction or re-development, think backwards from when you want to "break ground" on your new building.
The above is for something big — a substantial piece of art. For that, you do need a good lead time. Smaller commissions don't take as long. Click here to view our visual guide to the Commissioned Art Timeline
Often, people will come to the beginning of the process and not have something specific in mind.
We hear the phrase, "I know in general what I'm looking for." Or, all the person commissioning the piece knows is that there is a space he or she wants to work with, like "I need to fill a big space on the wall."
Rest assured: You can keep the process open and loose at first.
You can say something meaningful yet open, like "I need an iconic piece of art that fits with the character of our city." That's the beauty of the RFP process when you have access to elite creatives. Your needs and desires will be translated for you.
Even though we call this the RFP process, in the first big piece of the process (which is what our tools address), we're asking artists and creatives to apply with their images of previous work, plus the information that gives credibility to who they are as professionals.
The initial application process brings in top artists, so you are able to make a selection of finalists, usually about 3 to 5 creatives / artists. That's when you ask for the actual proposal... from those 3 to 5 artists. You do not need to sift through 100s of proposals.
We recommend a month to accept applications, although we have seen shorter and longer periods. Our experience tells us that 80% of applications come in the last few days before deadline.
Once you have scored and ranked applicants, we recommend you narrow it down to a small group of finalists. You have many options at this point. For instance, you can start by taking it down to 5 to 7 strong contenders, and do Skype interviews that will help you narrow the field even more. Or, you can immediately narrow the list to 2-3 finalists.
At the point where you get to a small list of finalists, we suggest that you then pay each of these candidates a design fee, which gets you a full proposal. A proposal will include drawings, a budget, and a timetable. It may include several design options or directions for the artwork.
These proposals likely take at least a month for the artists to develop.
Not all projects have the same scope. For smaller projects, 1 finalist may be fine. For larger projects, however, we strongly recommend 2 or 3.
Design fees can range from $500 to $5,000, typically $1,000 to $1,500.
We're really big on design fees. The design fee doesn't nearly cover the artist's costs for making the proposal, but it recognizes that a big part of what you're paying for is the artist's ideas.
The artists we work with are professionals, and they'll put their heart and soul into a proposal, as well as a good deal of time. You get a lot out of the design fee.
For larger commissions, there is a value in having several people involved in the process. We recommend no more than 7, or it gets unwieldy. Up to 10 is possible. Less than 5 is probably not enough to get good perspective on a big commission.
Our best advice: You may think you know what you want, but don't limit yourself.
Cast your net wider than you initially have in mind. That's our recommendation.
Why can you do that? Because CODAworx provides access to an elite creative community.
You need the best, and you need people who know what they are doing. These are experienced professionals who know how to create great pieces of art on time and on budget.
If you don't want to take a risk, you use the best.