News Flash


Posted on: September 3, 2020

City Reveals 5 Public Art Proposals to be Considered for Permanent Installation in Courthouse Square

News Flash_CHSQ Public Art

SANTA ROSA, CA - The City of Santa Rosa Public Art Program is excited to share the design proposals submitted for the permanent Courthouse Square public art project Imagine Art in Old Courthouse Square. The following five artists were identified through a competitive selection process and invited to submit designs, which are viewable online at

  • Benjamin Ball, Ball Nogues Studio, Los Angeles, CA
  • Laura Haddad & Tom Drugan, Seattle, WA
  • Blessing Hancock, Tuscon, AZ
  • Gordon Huether, Napa, CA
  • Ned Kahn, Sebastopol, CA

The Selection Panel and the Art in Public Places Committee (APPC) are seeking community input on the finalists’ proposals. Community members are encouraged to take the brief online survey at Survey results will be shared with selection panel for consideration during the final selection process.


The Public Art Program issued a Request for Qualifications seeking an artist or team of artists to design, fabricate and install site-specific public art at the north end of Old Courthouse Square which is the terminus of Mendocino Avenue in Downtown Santa Rosa, CA. The deadline to submit qualifications was January 13, 2020.  The Public Art Program received over 140 submissions from artists across the country. A selection panel was formed representing arts professionals, downtown business and property owners, downtown residents, and the Art in Public Places Committee. After a brief pause due to COVID-19 and related health orders, the project has resumed with a slightly altered timeline with the final installation taking place in early 2022.

Description of Project Opportunity: Imagine Art in Old Courthouse Square

The goal of this completed project is to provide the entire Santa Rosa community with a prominent artistic symbol that reflects the uniquely Santa Rosa values of innovation and cultural inclusivity. This art installation should inspire people living in, and visiting, the city to reflect on what is special about the community and encourage them to gather downtown to experience it first-hand.

The artist or artist team selected for this project will create a dynamic public art installation that contributes to a vital, thriving space to connect with each other and with the space. The public art should be forward-thinking and express the innovation, diversity, and engagement of the community. The public art should help create a sense of place for Old Courthouse Square.

Project Location

Old Courthouse Square is a central public plaza in the heart of downtown Santa Rosa. The approved Old Courthouse Square Master Plan identifies an area along 4th Street, at the terminus of Mendocino Avenue, to be dedicated to public art. The square is seen by many as the heart of the downtown and even of the city and is regularly used for a variety of special events and community gatherings. The public art installation should take into account the existing and proposed future amenities at the square, including landscaping, hardscape, lighting and other works of temporary and permanent public art.

Project Budget

The total available funding for the project is $280,000 (all inclusive – design and construction) and comes from the City of Santa Rosa Public Art Fund.



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