Arts & Culture Opportunities in the City of Moscow, ID
Here's the place! Bookmark this page and check back frequently for creative opportunities with Arts, Community Events, and Recreation Divisions at the City of Moscow.
Get started by selecting from the list below to view guidelines and application requirements for each form.
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This online resource connects the public with visual, literary, and performing artists and is a valuable resource for the community. Sharing your contact information is not required to be included in this Directory, though providing some details will help the public connect with you.
PALOUSE PLEIN AIR: September 5 - 15, 2022
Palouse Plein Air is an annual painting event that takes place every September, with experiences including painting workshops and a juried exhibition at the Third Street Gallery inside Moscow City Hall.
Historic Moscow, Idaho and the beautiful Palouse are the perfect destination for plein air artists, and the annual Palouse Plein Air painting event connects artists with the region’s landscape and arts culture. French for “open air,” the phrase “plein air” (pronounced plen-air) describes the act of painting outdoors. The outdoor experience on the Palouse is particularly rich, as its rolling hills, rivers, mountains, fields, farms, and homes tell the long history of the landscape.
Guided by the vision of the Moscow Arts Commission and University of Idaho art professor Aaron Cordell Johnson, Palouse Plein Air began in 2010, and the event continues to grow. A collaboration of community partners makes this growth possible; the City of Moscow Arts Department and the University of Idaho College of Art + Architecture work together to make a great event for artists and art lovers alike.
April 29 – September 1
Registration will be available online via Submittable. No emailed or paper registrations will be accepted. The registration form is available below, or by clicking this link: https://moscowarts.submittable.com/submit
September 5 - 13
Painting Period in Latah, Nez Perce, Whitman, and Benewah Counties
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Artwork Drop-off at the Third Street Gallery, located inside Moscow City Hall at 206 E Third St.
Juror Lecture on the UI Campus
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Juror Demonstration at the UI Arboretum
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Reception & Awards at the Third Street Gallery
September 15 - October 7
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Monday - Friday
Exhibition open at the Third Street Gallery
9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Artwork Pick-up at the Third Street Gallery
Palouse Plein Air is a painting competition open to all artists 18 years-of-age or older. All painting media are eligible for competition, including gouache, watercolor, acrylic, oil, and pastel.
Painting and Exhibition Guidelines
- Following registration, participants paint out-of-doors at any location of their choosing within Latah, Nez Perce, Whitman, and Benewah counties. Participants have the option to paint on all days of the competition or any combination of the competition days. No use of electronic, pictorial, or other aids is allowed. All work must be done on location by the individual artist.
- Each artist will submit photos of their completed works along with inventory information and images of the painting on location. This submission will be completed using a Submittable form to be provided by City staff following the close of event registration. This procedure not only generates content for the publicly-viewable online gallery, but also authenticates that each piece was made on location during the Palouse Plein Air competition period.
- Participants are invited to deliver finished entries to the Third Street Gallery inside Moscow City Hall on September 14 from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. No early drop-off or pick-up of artworks will be allowed. Artworks that arrive at any time other than the stated drop-off period will not be exhibited.
- Up to 3 (three) paintings will be accepted. Painting sizes accepted will be up to 72” total unframed perimeter inches or smaller. (e.g. a 16” x 20” has a 72” perimeter: 20” x 2 + 16” x 2 = 72”)
- Artworks must be presented for exhibition in sturdy framing with a wire hanger (no sawtooth hangers). Works submitted without proper framing and wire hangers will not be exhibited.
- Please label the back of each artwork with the following: artist name, artwork title, medium, sale price or NFS.
- Event organizers reserve the right to determine suitability of all works shown in the Palouse Plein Air exhibition.
- Works may be offered for sale, and any sales will be handled by Third Street Gallery staff. Artwork sales will be subject to a 20% Gallery commission and Idaho State sales tax.
- Works will remain at Third Street Gallery for the entire length of the exhibition.
- Artists shall release the City of Moscow to use photographs and/or video of them and their exhibited art works, for future publicity and promotional purposes without copyright, use fees, or charges.
Juror and Awards
Melanie Thompson is the 2022 Palouse Plein Air juror. Thompson is an artist from Richland, Washington, who paints the American West's diverse landscape. While studying graphic design at Washington State University, Thompson spent the summers fighting wildfires, developing a deep connection with the expansive views and untamed beauty of nature. After graduating, she took up a new medium—oils—and painted landscapes inspired by her experience as a wildland firefighter. Since then, Thompson has gone on to win numerous honors in competitions across the country. Inspiration for her work comes from hikes and road trips, and she paints as often as possible on location to better capture the nuances and mood of a place. Whether completed on location or in the studio, Thompson strives in her work to show the sublime beauty of the West’s open spaces.
Thompson will adjudicate the exhibition at the Third Street Gallery and will offer a lecture and painting workshop open to all registered participants. View her works online:
Awards will be announced during the artist reception at the Third Street Gallery. Winning participants need not be present to receive awards. Paintings will be available for sale and are eligible for the following cash and other recognition awards:
- 1st Place ($400)
- 2nd Place ($200)
- 3rd Place ($100)
- Best Palouse
- Best Downtown
- Best Historical
- Joyce Tamura Memorial Award for Best Watercolor
- Student Awards (2)
- Honorable Mentions (2)
- City of Moscow Purchase Award (1)
Registration Support for Palouse Plein Air 2022
Arts Program Manager
206 East Third Street
Moscow, ID 83843
206 East Third Street
Moscow, ID 83843
208.883.7000 ext. 7204
The City of Moscow invites artists to submit designs for mobile mini-murals on sign stands, to be placed near highly-visible storm drain inlets. This project provides public space for artists to share their two-dimensional artwork with the public, and beautifies street fixtures throughout the community. Up to two selected artists will install hand-painted murals on City-provided sign blanks to communicate the function of our City’s storm sewer system and its connection to local streams. The murals will be on display for two to four years.
Like many cities, the City of Moscow’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) flows directly into local waterways, including Paradise Creek. Paradise Creek and the South Fork of the Palouse River are listed as impaired waterbodies by the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality. In October 2019, the City was issued a Phase II National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System MS4 permit by the United States Environmental Protection Agency. This permit gives the City legal authority to discharge surface water into our local receiving waters. It also lays out specific requirements that the City of Moscow must meet to maintain compliance with its provisions. As part of one of these requirements, Moscow is required to conduct Public Education and Outreach activities. Stormwater murals are a way to meet portions of this provision in a way that engages the community, aligns with the City’s commitment to the Arts, and supports local artists.
Stormwater runoff from streets, parking lots, and other impervious surface areas, does not go to the Water Reuse & Reclamation Facility for treatment like sanitary sewage does. The water, and whatever it carries, can affect the water quality of our local streams and rivers, as well as those downstream. Things like trash, cigarette butts, sediment, nutrients from fertilizer and dog waste, oil, paint, etc. can degrade water quality and habitat for aquatic life. Successful submissions will be those that address the impact that stormwater has on the ecosystem as well as communicating the shared responsibility to protect precious resources.
This call is open to youth and adult artists who live in Latah County, Nez Perce County, Asotin County, Whitman County, Nez Perce or Coeur d’Alene tribal members. Artists are eligible regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital or familial status, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, and gender expression or identity. Artist teams are eligible to apply, including teams of artists from multiple disciplines. Selection panelists and their immediate family members are not eligible for participation. No artist sitting on a Selection Panel may submit a proposal for the project for which the Selection Panel was formed.
Project Timeline (subject to change)
June 15 – August 5 2022 Submission Period
August 2022 Artwork Selection, Notification, and Agreements
October 3, 2022 Finished Artworks Delivered (specific dates TBD)
Honorarium, Sales Information, and Loan Agreement
1. Selected artists will complete an Art Purchase Agreement.
2. Each selected artist will receive an honorarium of $300 upon completion of the artwork.
3. The City of Moscow will incur all costs related to sign stands, 36” x 18”aluminum sign substrates, surface preparation, and protective clear coat. The City will also provide exterior-grade acrylic paints for the artists’ use, though the artist will be responsible for providing all other tools and supplies.
4. A variety of promotions such as press releases, social media posts, and educational events will follow the completion of the murals. Artists may be called upon for media events such as interviews or photo opportunities.
1. Artwork submissions will be accepted via Submittable, the City’s online submission management system. No emailed or hand-delivered submissions will be accepted.
2. Artists may submit up to three separate designs for consideration.
3. Each design submission must be presented approximately to the scale of the 36” x 18” sign.
4. Submit JPEG file(s) of each design at 72 DPI
The Selection Panel will select designs based on the works’ alignment with the criteria below. Selection processes will be facilitated by Arts staff, and the Moscow Arts Commission will identify a selection panel to be comprised of the following voting members:
1 – Moscow Arts Commission Member 1 – City of Moscow Public Works & Services staff member
1 – Local Business Representative 1 – Arts Community Member
1. Formal & Conceptual Quality
- The artist presents a compelling concept.
- The proposed design is original to the presenting artist.
2. Content & Context
- The artwork’s subject matter and content is appropriate for public exhibition and
does not contain advertising, religious references, sexual content, negative imagery,
or convey political partisanship.
- The content of the proposed design is relevant to the City of Moscow’s values,
culture, and people.
- The proposed design communicates the function of the City’s storm sewer system.
The City of Moscow will install the 36” x 18”mobile mini-murals on sign stands and place them initially at the following intersections:
- 3rd & Main in front of Café Artista
- 6th & Main in front of One World Cafe
The mobile nature of these pieces will allow them to be moved to different locations to create a sense of variety and renewed interest in the mobile mini-mural collection as it grows.
Please click here to review the Site Details.
The Moscow Arts Commission and the City of Moscow seek nominations for the 2022 Mayor’s Arts Awards, which recognizes individuals and organizations who have shown substantial support of and excellence in the arts. The event is biennial, with a nomination and selection process facilitated by City of Moscow Arts staff and members of the Moscow Arts Commission. Award recipients will be honored in online promotions and an awards ceremony, where they will receive a custom-designed artwork made by a local artist.
All nominations must be submitted online. The Selection Panel and Moscow Arts Commission will review nominations before recommending award recipients to the City of Moscow Mayor for final determination. The nominations will be evaluated based solely on submission materials, so nominators are encouraged to submit the full range of documents required in the form. Required documents include a resume or CV for the nominee, up to three work samples, a letter of support from the nominator, and a letter of support from a community member other than the primary nominator.
Individuals, students, businesses, and organizations that are makers of or advocates for the arts are eligible. Awards may be given based on excellence in all media for art-making, including the literary, performing, and visual arts. Nominees should be those individuals or organizations that have made a significant contribution to the arts and cultural climate of the City of Moscow through distinguished support and service or creative accomplishments. Nominees must be current or former residents of the Moscow region. Nominations of individuals who no longer reside in the region must focus on the nominee’s contribution to the Moscow community. Previous Mayor’s Arts Awards recipients are eligible for another award in a different category than the one previously received. Such candidates are eligible no fewer than 6 years after receipt of the previous award, and the nomination must be based on a different body of work than the one recognized by the previous award. Employees of the City of Moscow, current Moscow Arts Commission members, or elected officials are not eligible for nomination. Current Moscow Arts Commission and Arts Department staff members are not eligible to make nominations.
To see a list of previous award recipients, view the following link: https://www.ci.moscow.id.us/215/7131/Moscow-Mayors-Arts-Awards
Nominations will be accepted in the following categories:
Individual Excellence in the Arts
This award recognizes artists who have made a significant contribution to the arts in Moscow, and who have demonstrated a high degree of artistic excellence in any discipline including performing, visual, or literary arts. Considerations for selection include quality and originality of work, scope of audience, and previous awards or distinctions.
Arts Advocacy awards celebrate individuals or families who champion the arts by supporting through their time, talent, and treasure. Selection will be based on the type and scope of service to the community as well as the nominee’s commitment to support of arts and culture in Moscow.
Outstanding Achievement in Arts Education
This award honors individuals or organizations that have made an outstanding contribution that impacted the value of the arts educational curriculum or helped to provide access to the arts for students of all ages.
Youth Excellence in the Arts
This award recognizes young people who show excellence in art-making, advocacy, or other service to the creative community. Those in grades K-12 or the equivalent at time of nomination are eligible. Selection processes will not only study the scope and efficacy of the current nominee’s efforts, but also the potential of the candidate to grow in their role as an artist or advocate for the cultural growth of the Moscow community.
Outstanding College or University Students in the Arts
This award recognizes area student artists who have dedicated a significant portion of their education working to develop and manifest their individual creativity within any discipline of art including performance, visual, or literary arts. Selection processes will not only study the scope and efficacy of the nominee’s current efforts, but also the candidate’s potential for creative and professional growth in the future.
Outstanding Contributions as a Business
Businesses or organizations that have made outstanding contributions to the advancement, excellence, and support of the arts in Moscow are eligible for this award. The selection panel will consider the type of support offered to the arts as well as the efficacy of the organization’s connections and service to the community.
Lifetime Achievement in the Arts
Lifetime achievement awards are reserved for those individuals whose contributions to the arts, over a lifetime, have made a lasting and profound impact on the artistic and cultural life of the Moscow area. Nomination materials should demonstrate a track record of community participation, industry and peer recognition, and high-quality, original approaches to art-making and advocacy. Nomination materials should demonstrate how the nominee’s lifetime of dedication to the development and support of the arts will sustain the Moscow arts community into the future.
The Mayor reserves the right to modify the number of awards or the assignment of awards to nominees based on the content of nominations. Nominees will be evaluated on the basis of the breadth, depth, and potential of their work and its impact on the Moscow area. The Selection Panel, Moscow Arts Commission, and Mayor will review nomination materials based on their demonstration of the values described in each award category.
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