Cultural Connections 2016-07-22T14:52:24+00:00

Cultural Connections Header

Norman Arts Council’s Cultural Connections is a program to further the bonds between Norman, Oklahoma and its sister cities across the globe by bringing visiting artists from abroad to share their heritage with us through their art while sending off Norman artists to further our city’s history internationally.


Norman France-01

Guidelines: Download full guidelines by clicking here
Apply at:

Project Description: 

Cultural Connections brings together the sister cities of Norman, OK and Clermont-Ferrand, France through a cultural exchange of artists, their work, and exhibits in both cities. Through mini-residencies, Norman artists will create installations in a restored chapel in the heart of city center of Clermont-Ferrand in May 2017 and Clermont-Ferrand artists will create installations in MAINSITE Contemporary Art for exhibit in October/November 2017. Through this exchange the cultural similarities and diversities of these sister cities can be explored and shared with both communities.

The selected Norman artists will be working in studio spaces alongside three Clermont-Ferrand artists while in France. The exhibition space is next-door to the studio spaces.

The Norman Arts Council (NAC) is seeking proposals from qualified artists to be included in the Cultural Connections Exhibit in Clermont-Ferrand, France in May 2017. The NAC will select 3 artists for this unique and exciting exhibition opportunity.

Artist Eligibility

A selection panel will review proposals from qualified artists. Any artist wishing to apply must fit one of these descriptions to be qualified:

1.      Live in Norman, OK for at least the past 365 days OR

2.     Have exhibited at MAINSITE Contemporary Art: Home of the Norman Arts Council at some time since January 1, 2012

3.    Artists of all disciplines are encouraged to apply


August 31, 2016 – Deadline for submissions to the Cultural Connections: Norman in Clermont-Ferrand, France RFP

September 16, 2016 – Notification of selected artists for Cultural Connections: Norman in Clermont-Ferrand

Early May 2017 – Norman in Clermont-Ferrand! Selected artists travel to Clermont-Ferrand France for installation

May 19 – 21, 2017 – Cultural Connections: Norman in Clermont-Ferrand exhibit opens in France. Opening will be part of  “Les arts en balade,” an annual arts festival in the city where artists open their studios to visitors, this past year there were over 30,000 visitors to the festival.

October 13, 2017 – Cultural Connections: Clermont-Ferrand in Norman exhibit opens at MAINSITE.

RFP Requirements

Please keep the following in mind when crafting your proposal:

·       Preference may be given to proposals that are temporary, site-specific installations

·       The Chapel is a very large, open space, your proposal should address how your work would be exhibited in the space (floor plan and photos are at the end of the RFP) and if your work is to be hung, how could it attach to existing walls or what kinds of supports/walls would need to be created on site.

·       Shipping costs must be VERY minimal. We prefer to not have to ship any work overseas and are looking for creativity in temporary, site-specific installation work that can be completed on site with materials either carried on plane or sourced in France on arrival

·       Performance art and other non-visual arts WILL be considered if the proposal involves some kind material that can be exhibited

·       We seek installations/works that focus on cultures of Norman and/or Clermont-Ferrand

·       Willingness to travel to France in May 2017 and stay for up to two weeks is essential

·       Installations/exhibits must have the ability to be completed and mounted in France in a maximum window of two weeks

Please include the following with your proposal:

1.      CV

2.     Artist statement

3.    Narrative of proposed exhibit indicating space(s) in the building desired for use. Narrative should include:

a.     Description of exhibit/installation/performance including why you think is it appropriate for the exchange and if the work is original to this project or is existing work.

b.    Materials you would use and where you would source them

c.     If you need to ship work and/or materials, please describe

d.    How the proposed work is significant to the culture of Norman and/or Clermont-Ferrand

e.     Statement about why you want to be included in this exhibit

4.    Photographic examples of previous work you believe speak to your ability to work within the parameters of this RFP (up to 15 images)

5.    Corresponding image list including title, date, size, and materials used

6.    A list of 3 professional references who can speak to your work as an artist


The Chapelle de l’Oratoire is in the heart of the City Center of Clermont-Ferrand. The city is currently restoring the space to accommodate exhibits and performances. It is in walking distance of the Cathedrale Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption and many of the sites, cafes, and shops of Clermont-Ferrand.

Photographs (pre-renovation) and a site map are found at the end of this RFP. The Chapel is 69 feet long x 28 feet wide with a 32-foot ceiling. There are beams crossing the space at 21 feet in the middle (see photos). There is also a choir loft that could be used for exhibit installation as well.


The NAC will fully fund the travel, lodging, and $50 per diem while in Clermont-Ferrand for selected artists. The NAC will fund exhibition/shipping costs of up to $1,000 per artist.


For questions, contact:
Erinn Gavaghan
Executive Director, Norman Arts Council

Cultural Connections is made possible through support from Fowler Auto Group, Republic Bank & Trust, The City of Norman, Kirkpatrick Foundation, Oklahoma Arts Council and National Endowment for the Arts. Special support for Cultural Connections was provided by The City of Norman and the University of Oklahoma College of International Studies.