Outdoor Sculpture & Installation: Call for Proposals

Watershed is excited to announce our first open call for outdoor sculpture and installation. With our indoor gallery closed and residency program on hold for the summer, we invite artists working in clay to submit project proposals for work to be installed outdoors on our 54-acre campus in midcoast Maine. We aim to provide an opportunity for artists to conceptualize and execute new work, and to offer a fresh experience for public viewing of clay-centric art during this time of social distancing. We encourage proposals for incisive, surprising, and distinctive work that will engage viewers from a distance.

Selected artists will have the opportunity to produce and exhibit sculpture or installation work. The completed work will be exhibited to the public 24/7 for the duration of the project.

A note about COVID-19 and Safety: Assuming that Maine’s “shelter in place” orders are less restrictive over the summer months, we anticipate that it will be safe for Watershed to host installations from early August through mid-October. We will expect all artists (and Watershed staff) to adhere to social distancing rules still in effect at that time.

Proposals will be accepted until June 15, 2020. You may email Studio Manager Reeder Fahnestock (rfahnestock@watershedceramics.org) regarding any questions about the proposal and install process.

Please carefully read the information below before you submit a proposal.


  • Deadline for submission of proposals is June 15, 2020
  • Final decisions regarding proposals will be made no later than July 17, 2020
  • Installations may begin the week of August 3 and may remain in place until October 12, 2020
  • Scheduling of installation and de-installation will be in coordination with the Watershed Studio Manager

Site Information

Site #1: Unlimited access to the lawn area immediately adjacent to the Joan Pearson Watkins House (Watershed’s administrative office and gallery building); possible limited access to field in consultation with Studio manager.

  • This site consists of a large, mostly flat lawn with views over forested land and a sloping, open field with apple trees.
  • The area consists of front, side, and back yard area.
  • The field is used for agriculture. Some discrete, limited use of the field may be possible.
  • Installations would be visible from Cochran Road and from the Joan Pearson Watkins House.
  • View site on Google Maps

Site #2: Unlimited access to the lawn area adjacent to Thompson Hall and circle driveway on Watershed’s main campus.

  • This site consists of a large, mostly flat lawn surrounded by trees and flower gardens.
  • Although this area is not visible from Cochran Road, it is highly visible for people as they drive onto campus. It is adjacent to a circle driveway that affords viewers an opportunity to view the work from a short distance.
  • View bird’s eye view of site on Google Maps

Installation Guidelines

  • Site preparation must be minimally intrusive, allowing for rehabilitation to its original state. Site preparation will take place in consultation with the Watershed Studio Manager.
  • Work must be installed/de-installed with minimum support from Watershed staff. Installation must not present a hazard to the environment or the viewing public.
  • Artist will be provided access to Watershed Studio equipment: clay mixer, wheel, slab-roller, extruder, work space, and shop tools in consultation with the Studio manager. Artist must supply all hand tools (cordless drill, tape measure, hammer, clay tools, etc).
  • Some, limited, low, and/or midrange firings may occur in consultation with and at the discretion of the Studio Manager at no cost to the artist.
  • All materials and their procurement are the sole responsibility of the artist with the exception of some dry clay materials may be purchased from Watershed with advance notice.

Project Benefits

  • Stipend: Artists will receive a $1,000 stipend (includes travel costs).
  • Accommodations: Artists will be provided with overnight accommodations at Watershed during the installation and de-installation processes. A private bedroom and bathroom will be provided, but kitchen facilities will be closed. A small refrigerator and microwave will be available for use, but otherwise artists must make arrangements to obtain food off campus. There is a limit of 4 nights/5 days during the installation process and 2 nights and three days for de-installation. Artists may not have guests with them unless someone is required to assist with the installation/de-installation.

Artist Exposure: Watershed will photograph and share images of the installation process and the completed work through social media platforms. We currently have over 16,000 subscribers to Watershed’s monthly electronic newsletter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts.