Minnesota Percent for Art in Public Places
See a list of current opportunities
What is the Percent for Art program?
The Minnesota Percent for Art in Public Places program acquires works of art to be exhibited in and around state buildings in areas regularly accessible to the general public.The program is administered by the Minnesota State Arts Board in cooperation with the Minnesota Department of Administration. Percent for Art secures artwork in two ways: by purchasing existing work, or by commissioning artists to create new work especially for the state building or site. In order to reflect the rich diversity of the citizens of Minnesota, the Percent for Art program chooses artwork that represents a wide range of social, cultural, and historical values. The work also must be enduring and thought provoking, as well as fiscally responsible and appropriate for the space.
In more than 100 locations around Minnesota—from the International Wolf Center in Ely to the Minnesota Judicial Center in Saint
Paul -- significant works of art by contemporary professional artists have been incorporated into our state buildings. In
the tradition of the nineteenth century, when sculpture, mosaics, and murals were routinely part of a building’s architecture,
we are continuing to create meaningful and memorable public places that enhance the lives of those who work in or visit the buildings.
An interactive map, including photos and a brief description of over 130 public works of art from Percent for Art locations around the state is available online.
How is the program funded?
Artwork is purchased with funds provided by Minnesota’s 1984 "Percent for Art" legislation, which encourages state building projects with construction or renovation budgets of $500,000 or more to use up to one percent of the total construction budget to purchase or commission original artwork for the site. Minnesota's Percent for Art in Public Places program is not unique; it is one of 26 state (and over 90 municipal) public art programs around the country that commission work to enliven our shared public spaces, and provide opportunities for artists.
How is work selected?
For each site, the Minnesota State Arts Board convenes a site selection committee made up of representatives who are users of the building, the architect in charge of the project, and artists or other arts professionals. The committee examines construction plans and determines possible locations for artwork, and then reviews the images of artwork by artists whose work might be appropriate for the project.
For more information
Contact Ben Owen, program officer