Unblurred 2020 RFP

Overview / Statement of Purpose

Assemble is accepting proposals for Assemble’s 2020 Unblurred Showcase. Assemble will select 10 local artists, makers, and/or technologists for participation in a month-long show at Assemble from February 2020 to November 2020. Selected artists will have the opportunity to share skills, incubate creative ideas, and facilitate community-engaged projects.

Background Information / Context

Assemble is a community space for arts and technology. We unite artists, technologists, and makers with our neighbors to provide a platform for experiential learning, open creative processes, and building confidence through making. Assemble provides a space for children and adults to engage with Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics (STEAM)-based activities in a fun, relaxed environment.

Scope of Work And Expectations

    • Create and install an exhibition for the gallery during the week prior to the opening night
    • Install and deinstall the work for the show (Assemble does not ship artwork)
    • Must be present for the opening event on the first Friday of the month
    • Must be present for the removal of the work on the last day of the show
    • Must be at Assemble for one artist talk or workshop during the month
    • Clearly communicate needs, materials, and marketing information required for the success of the show


This call is open to artists, technologists, makers, individuals, groups, departments, and students. There is no limit on age, number of people, or medium as long as it is maker-oriented and can connect with the community.

Assemble is a dynamic space. Your work will be at risk to people interacting with it throughout the month; it will be around children, and it will not be insured. Therefore, we suggest proposing work that is meant to be interacted with, or is durable.

We ask for $200 to have a month long show in Assemble. If this is a limitation, please let us know. You are encouraged to apply for funding through the PA Partners in the Arts grant of up to $2,500. Read more about this grant here.

Artists are welcome to sell artwork at Assemble. We ask for 30% of each art sale.

Due to Assemble’s focus on community engagement and technology, we are especially interested in working with artists and makers who live in neighborhoods adjacent to Assemble, have a social justice or community-oriented practice, work with new media, and/or have an MFA. African American, LGBTQ, and other minority Artists/Makers/Technologists are strongly encouraged to apply. Applicants must also have or have the ability provide their clearances to work with children in Pennsylvania. Assistance can be provided for obtaining Criminal Record and Child Abuse Clearances.

Unblurred 2020 Showcase Overview

1. Fees

  • The fee to showcase your work at Assemble, 4824 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15224, for one month (first Friday of the month to last Friday of the month, including the week before the opening for installation and the day after closing for tear down) is $200.
  • You will be required to pay a $50 non-refundable deposit, one month in advance of your show. The additional balance of $150 should paid upon receiving the key to Assemble’s gallery space. Please pay via check, cash, or Paypal.
  • You are encouraged to find a sponsor or grant to help pay expenses. If cost becomes a barrier to participate, please reach out to the Unblurred Coordinator at proposals@assemblepgh.org. Assemble may be able to assist with the process of finding a sponsor or grant.  
  • For artwork sales or event proceeds, Assemble collects 30% of the profit. If you would like Assemble to collect the sales during the month, we will be able to pay the 70% profit to the artist.

2. Timeline

  • Initial Meeting: 3 months prior to your show month, you will meet with the Unblurred Coordinator to discuss logistics for your show. If you do not live in Pittsburgh, we can arrange to meet via Google Hangouts or phone.
  • Promotion: 2 months prior to your opening, you must email a blurb, bio, and image of your work to the Unblurred Coordinator, at proposals@assemblepgh.org. Assemble will assist with show promotion on our website and social media. 
  • Showcase Meeting + Tour: You will collect a key from Assemble on the Monday before the opening of the Unblurred showcase on Friday. At this time, we will provide a brief tour of Assemble and meeting for your showcase.
  • Installation: We ask that you install all pieces for your month-long showcase between Monday (after receiving a key to Thursday between 9am-3pm and 6:30pm-9pm during the week. Installation must be complete by the first Friday at 3pm.
  • Floor Plans: For installations that use floor space, we ask artists to provide a plan drawing to Assemble. Please plan to send a plan drawing if the exhibition will include any of the following: an extensive build out; large items or sculptures placed in the middle of the space; furniture or art pieces that extend more than three feet from the wall. This information must be provided to Assemble at least one week before the installation begins.
  • Opening Night (Unblurred, First Friday): You must be present at the Unblurred opening on the first Friday of your month. For the Unblurred opening, Assemble provides beer and refreshments. You are responsible for providing any additional snacks and/or drinks. The Unblurred opening must have some interactive aspect. This could include video, audio, or hands-on activities, and/or performances, collaborative project. Updates, changes, and transformations to your installation are encouraged. Please communicate all material and technology needs for the opening show to the Unblurred Coordinator.
  • Showcase Duration: The exhibition will be on display from the first Friday of the month for Unblurred (6-10pm) to the last week of the month.
  • Workshop or Additional Event: During your month, you are required to have an artist-led workshop, be a guest maker for one of our in-house programs, or host a closing party or artist talk. All events pertaining to your show must be confirmed a month in advance. We ask that you attend all workshops and/or performances that you are organizing during your month.
  • Deinstallation: Tear down will take place on the Friday or Saturday following the closing date. The key must be returned to Assemble on the deinstallation date.


3. Responsibilities

  • Key Return + Clean Up: When returning the key at the end of the rental period, no remnants of the previous show should be evident in the space. On a day-to-day basis, the space should be kept neat and clear of garbage.
  • Walls:  All walls that the artist is using must be returned to their prior condition. Assemble provides standard wall paint, at no additional cost. If the walls are not painted by the Saturday after closing, you will be billed a $50 fee for materials and labor.
  • Damaged Surfaces: You will be responsible for repairing any damage to the walls and floors caused by your installation. This includes nail holes in the walls which must be patched and painted. Assemble will provide all materials to repair the walls. If the damage is extensive, you will be responsible for purchasing more materials.
  • Damaged work: Assemble is not responsible for damaged artwork. Assemble is an interactive space for people of all ages. Although we are cautious with all artwork in our space, all artwork may potentially be handled by our visitors.
  • De-installation: Everything that you brought into the space over the course of the month must be removed during tear down weekend.  This includes all art, artist-owned furniture, tools, materials, technology equipment, bags, or packaging materials in Assemble’s space. If artwork or furniture is not removed by the opening of the next Unblurred show, it will be donated.

4. Prohibitions

  • Assemble does not permit smoking/vaping, burning incense, or running a smoke machine in our space.
  • Assemble does not allow the application of oil-based paints, permanent markers, glue, or other permanent materials on on walls or floors. Please clear all materials with Assemble staff before applying to any surface at Assemble.
Floor Plan

How To Apply

Proposals are due by August 31, 2019.

Questions? Email proposals@assemblepgh.org.