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The original item was published from 5/9/2020 2:49:00 PM to 8/1/2020 12:00:01 AM.

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Posted on: May 9, 2020

[ARCHIVED] PRESS RELEASE: Public Arts Commission Seeks Proposals for Public Art at Bob Shelden Athletic Complex

Graphic with text that says: Artist Needed Call for Art - Brookings Public Art Commission

Brookings, SD – The Brookings Public Arts Commission, in partnership with the City of Brookings, SD, seeks an artist to develop, fabricate and install permanent outdoor artwork within the Bob Sheldon Baseball Field and the surrounding complex. This call is open to any artist living and working in the United States.

The total project budget is $190,000 for artist fee, materials, fabrication, insurance, travel, transportation, shipping and installation costs. The total budget should also include engineering fees, excavation requirements, footings and electrical costs associated with the artwork. Although, depending on specific final artwork proposals, some site preparation, lighting and electrical expenses could be included in the overall baseball facility project construction budget.

The public art project is planned for an area where visitors will congregate. The artwork should be highly visible within the surrounding park environment and serve as a marker or “gateway” while encouraging visitor interaction. The artwork should also visually complement the overall ambiance of an old baseball park as reflected in nearby structures, foliage and landscape features.

The completed work must be accessible to all by considering those with special needs, while meeting all requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Completed artwork must also be composed of the highest quality materials and constructed according to best practices to withstand the potentially harsh weather conditions of South Dakota.


The project site located at 621 Medary Avenue in Brookings, is one of the primary amenities of the Dwiggins-Medary Community Park and Athletic Complex. It is also adjacent to Brookings High School. The facility is a dual-purpose athletic field and hosts youth baseball activities under the auspices of the City of Brookings Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department and Brookings Friends of Baseball. It also hosts sub-varsity football games for the Brookings School District. The facility owner is the City of Brookings.

Bob Shelden Field was dedicated in October 1968, at which time it was named to honor the memory of the late Robert (Bob) Shelden, outstanding Brookings High School and South Dakota State College athlete. Bob Shelden passed away at the age of 21 on April 23, 1962, after a five-month illness with Hodgkin’s disease.

Playing basketball, football, and baseball as well as participating in track, Bob Shelden gained All-State honors in both football and basketball on the Brookings Bobcat team of coach Nig Johnson, and graduated ninth in his class of 117 in 1959, serving as president of the BHS National Honor Society. Prior to his enrollment at SDSC, Bob was recruited by major NCAA powers Minnesota, Colorado, Arizona, Nebraska, and Oklahoma. In his sophomore year at SDSC, majoring in Professional Chemistry, Bob was a starting guard for the Jackrabbit basketball team and was considered “a top prospect to be an all-time Jackrabbit great,” according to coach Jim Iverson. That Jackrabbit team won the NCC, Regionals, and finished third in the National Tournament as Bob set a SDSC field goal shooting record that stood for many years. Attesting to his quiet dignity and sincere humility, he was voted “most inspirational” cager by his fellow basketball players in the spring of 1962, even though he had missed the season because of his illness.

Bob Shelden’s tie with Brookings baseball is further strengthened by his pitching for the Brookings Cub amateur team and during the summer of 1961, he was employed by the City’s Park Department maintaining the baseball field. More information about the history of baseball in Brookings may be found at


The Brookings Public Arts Commission, along with facility and community representatives will select up to three (3) finalists who will be paid an honorarium of $2,000 each for a detailed final proposal of artwork. All costs associated with production of detailed proposal, shipping and any travel expenses associated with proposal development are the responsibility of the artist.

June 30, 2020: RFQ Deadline

July 13, 2020: The Art Selection Panel will notify 3-5 artists and invite

them to submit a full proposal for this public art project.

Aug. 24, 2020: Invited full proposals due

Sept. 15, 2020: Artist Selected/Notified

Sept. 1, 2021: Installation Due

The City of Brookings encourages diversity in its collection. Artists whose work is well represented in the City’s collection are eligible to apply, but the artist selection panel will consider artistic diversity as one factor in the selection process. Students are not eligible to apply.

The selected artist will receive a commission of $190,000 (that shall include all South Dakota State Sales/Use Tax), to design, fabricate, and install the artwork. The $190,000 budget also shall include any associated travel costs.

Proposals must be submitted through the Café website: Before submitting a proposal, artists must set up a free Café profile if they have not already done so. To find more details about the call, sort by state and choose “South Dakota” on the Café website or visit: 

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