VisArts Call for Docent Applications, Spring 2018
(To complete the application form, you will need to create a Submittable account, below.)
For Spring 2018, VisArts is launching a pilot docent program and is seeking docents to lead tours and have casual conversations about the artwork in the galleries. Contemporary art can be challenging, and our goal for the VisArts docent program is to help visitors understand and engage with the artwork on view. Docents will gain skills in public speaking, audience engagement, researching artwork, and develop a deeper understanding of contemporary art. Additionally, docents will be trained and have the opportunity to apply museum and art education strategies to facilitate in-gallery learning. As for other benefits, docents will also earn credit toward art classes at VisArts, and gain behind-the-scenes access to the galleries. This is a volunteer position.
VisArts is a non-profit organization with the mission of transforming individuals through the visual arts. VisArts has four art galleries, and additional art spaces, dedicated to rotating exhibitions for contemporary artists. We are located in Rockville Town Square, Rockville, MD, a short walk from the Rockville Metro Station on the Red Line.
The galleries are open on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday from 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM, and on Fridays from 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM. This opportunity is open to all adults, ages 18+.
Docent responsibilities include:
· Attending three training sessions in February and March (see dates below)
· Attending four monthly meetings, in March, April, May, and June
· At least one four-hour shift per week
· Leading tours of the galleries
· Engaging in casual conversations with visitors in the galleries about the artwork on view
· Monitoring the galleries
· Researching the rotating artwork and artists on view
· Must be mature, reliable, responsible, friendly, and punctual
· Good communication skills
· Comfortable speaking in front of an audience
· Prior experience with art, art history, or art or non-art related public speaking
· Able to commit to one shift per week. (Preference for Saturday or Sunday availability)
· Familiarity with or a willingness to learn about contemporary art
· January 29: Applications are due by 11:59 PM
· February 5: Phone interviews begin
· February 12: Decisions will be made, applicants will be notified
· February 17, 24, and March 3: Three Saturday training sessions
· March 10: Shifts and Tours begin
· June 3: Session Ends
· Monthly Meetings will be based on docent availability
To be considered, applicants will need to fill out the application form through Submittable. (You need to create an account to see the form.) Additionally, applicants will need to provide a resume, a cover letter explaining why this opportunity interests you and how you meet the requirements, and contact information for two professional references, to be submitted with the form.
The Gibbs Street Gallery offers exhibitions that explore the breadth of contemporary art featuring emerging to mid-career artists. Exhibits reflect a wide range of media and experimental approaches that offer the viewer unexpected interactions with art. The gallery is approximately 1,100 square feet with 16 ft. ceilings. It is on the street level with floor to ceiling windows along one wall. International, national and local artists are welcome to apply.
The Common Ground Gallery features exhibitions that reflect the creative pursuits of artists from our community. The gallery is located on the second floor and is approximately 300 square feet. Artists must live in the Mid-Atlantic region to apply for a solo exhibition in this gallery.
Applicants who have participated in a solo exhibition at VisArts within the past two years are not eligible to apply.
Application Deadline: Friday, March 30, 2018 before midnight
*Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.
All application materials must be submitted online through our website no later than 11:59 pm EST on 03/30/2018.
You can find the layout for each gallery here:
Gibbs Street Gallery - http://www.visartsatrockville.org/docs/Gibbs-Street-Gallery-Floor-Plan.pdf
Common Ground Gallery - http://www.visartsatrockville.org/docs/Common-Ground-Gallery-Floor-Plan.pdf
SketchUp plans for the galleries are also available upon request.
Admission to the VisArts Studio Fellowship is highly selective, based on a review of applications by panels of artists and art professionals. Panelists include painters, sculptors, film and video artists, photographers, installation artists, inter-disciplinary artists, and independent curators. The admission panel is rotated regularly.
VisArts is an independent non-profit art center located in the heart of Rockville Town Square, a thriving gathering place for the local community. VisArts presents exhibitions of contemporary emerging and established artists in four galleries, an Emerging Curator Program, a Studio Artist Program, and an Art Education Program making it an active and important presence in the greater metropolitan arts community. Rockville offers easy access to public transit to Washington, D.C. via the Red Line Metro, an excellent bus system, bike trails, and parking.
The VisArts Studio Fellowship does not provide housing for artists. Please contact VisArts directly for resources regarding housing during the residency period.
Terms of Residency:
- Qualified applicants are professional individual artists or collaborative artist teams over the age of 18; the program is not designed for program is not designed for undergraduate students or commercial artists.
- Artists working in all media are welcome to apply, but VisArts cannot support the use of hazardous materials that require specific ventilation requirements.
- The studio may be used only for art-making activities.
- The VisArts Studio Fellow will be provided with a 169 square foot studio, free of charge, for a period of six months. Each studio is equipped with a sink, Wi-Fi connection and abundant natural light. Studio access is 24/7 except during special VisArts events (advance notice will be given). The artist must provide his/her own studio furniture.
- The VisArts Studio Fellow is responsible for maintaining the studio in a safe and reasonably tidy manner, and will not make alterations to the space without permission. The artist must leave the studio in the state in which it was found and remove all belongings at the end of the fellowship.
- The VisArts Studio Fellow is responsible for acquisition, insurance, and care of his/her materials and equipment. Artists who wish to have kilns and other equipment that create additional electrical use must obtain permission for each piece of equipment that they wish to use in their studios.
The VisArts Studio Fellow will participate in the following:
- Work in the studio at VisArts for a minimum of 28 hours/week.
- VisArts Studio Fellows are expected to participate in the VisArts Studio Artist Program that meets monthly to share food, ideas, community, and professional development.
- Welcome the public during exhibition opening receptions or at scheduled Open Studio events.
- Attend artist talks and gallery opening receptions.
- Present an artist talk, workshop, screening, and/or other mutually agreed upon public event that engages the VisArts and greater Rockville communities and resources.
- Present a solo exhibition of work at VisArts.
Application and Selection Process
Required materials include:
- Images: Submit 10 images of work produced during the last four years. Work samples can be a combination of high resolution jpgs and time-based media (*up to 10 minutes total). *For collaborative teams, 10 images of collaborative work are required as well as a statement of the collaborative nature of the work. *Two minutes of video, film, sound or performance documentation = one work. Artists may choose to include links to Vimeo or You Tube public accounts for time-based work samples.
- Image Requirements: You may submit up to 10 images. They must be in .jpg, .tiff, .png, or .gif file format. Minimum image resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. Maximum file size 5MB per image. Files must be labeled in the following way: first name last name-title of artwork-1.ext, first name last name-title of artwork-2.ext, etc. The file number corresponds with the number on the list of works. (Ex. John Doe-Untitled-1.jpg)
- List of Works Form- Numbered list of artworks with the following information: artist name, title of artwork, year, dimensions, a description of artwork is optional.
- Artist Bio (200 word max.)- Third-person paragraph highlighting your professional achievements.
- Artist Statement (100 words max.)
- References- Provide contact information for two references who can address your work as an artist.
- Fellowship Proposal:
- Describe your goals for the fellowship, and how you might engage with the community or use community resources. You may include a drawing or representative images to help describe your specific proposal. (250 words max.)
- Please indicate preferred residency dates (first and second choice):
_____ June 7 - December 5, 2018
_____ December 10, 2018 - June 5, 2019
- $15 application fee
All applications will be reviewed by a panel of artists and arts professionals.
Transforming individuals and communities through the visual arts.
From our beginning in 1987 as Rockville Arts Place operating in a converted garage to our current contemporary, state of the art facility in Rockville Town Square, VisArts has served local residents, students, art lovers, professional artists and others with an interest in the arts. Each year, VisArts welcomes more than 25,000 visitors through our doors to participate in art education classes and camp programs, attend events in our Buchanan Room, visit one of our four galleries or observe our studio artists on our second floor Artist Concourse.