The Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority (AADDA) has partnered with the City of Ann Arbor (City) and The Arts Alliance to create and implement PowerArt!, a public art and design project to install up to 17 energetic, vinyl-printed art replicas of local artists’ work on traffic signal boxes in downtown Ann Arbor. The goal of PowerArt! is to power public access to the arts through street-level community involvement. The traffic boxes present a great opportunity to serve as urban canvases. When unused, the gray metal boxes are often marred, dirty or covered in graffiti and flyers. Yet from any angle – even above – this untapped space can add another facet of dynamic style, culture and allure to the downtown streets of Ann Arbor.

Artist who have lived, worked or gone to school in Washtenaw County are invited to submit artworks to be replicated on the traffic boxes. The Arts Alliance, with its successful history of implementing public art and design projects, has been contracted by the AADDA to manage PowerArt!

Above are the eight artworks that were installed during the pilot phase – Round 1 of PowerArt!

PowerArt! Round  3 Call for Art
The Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority (AADDA) and The Arts Alliance have not yet set dates for PowerArt! Round 3.

Join The Arts Alliance’s E-Newsletter to be among the first to receive notice of the Call for Art for Round 3. Sign up here The Arts Alliance E-Newsletter Sign UP

To be eligible the applicant must:

The following are the eligibility requirements for artists or artist teams (school, community group, business etc.):

  • Current or past resident, worker or student in Washtenaw County.
  • All eligible applicants who are tied to Washtenaw County are considered regardless of race, sex, religion, nationality, age, origin or disability.
  • Submit a new or existing artwork of any medium, as the contracted fabricator is able to transform the artist’s digital image into a vinyl wrap to be applied to the traffic boxes.
  • Works may be complete, partial or modified images of new or created works, such as imagery of a three-dimensional sculpture or a small detail of an originally large painting or photograph.
  • Modified work is only accepted if the original work is the artist’s original work.

All eligible applicants meeting the geographic requirement, regardless of race, sex, religion, nationality, age, origin or disability, will be considered. For questions regarding eligibility, contact The Arts Alliance at info@a3arts.org

Image Requirements: submissions must include a relatively high resolution (1-5MB) digital image of the proposed artwork.

Artists must submit the following:

  • up to six different image for consideration.
  • The high resolution image must be submitted as a jpeg file with dimensions comparable to fit on the EPAC 12 Phase traffic boxes or 5.9’x11.75’ (HxW).
    • Further instructions can be found in the Site Maps filePowerArt_Final Diagram_2-02.
  • The file name must include the artist or organization name in the title.
    • For example: TheArtsAllianceImage.jpg
  • An artist/org statement
    • A list of collaborators and bios should be included if applicable.
  • A description of (each) work
  • The size and name of (each) work.

*Traffic box sizes vary. Therefore by submitting works, artists grant The Arts Alliance permission to alter/crop works as needed.

The Arts Alliance is committed to an open, transparent and community focused process from start to finish. Artwork will be selected by a jury of individuals representing a cross-section of the community, contributing a spectrum of diverse opinions.


The Arts Alliance will issue a call for county residents, students and workers to apply to serve on the art selection jury. The partners intend to seat a diverse jury inclusive of those with specific art/public art expertise and talent, as well as community members at large. Students and citizens passionate about public art and design, as well as those who are less than enthused about investing public dollars this way, are encouraged to apply. Two jury positions are reserved for representatives from AADDA board and from the city (preferably a council member). The remaining six or seven spots are open for applications.

Apply to be a Juror

Public online selection process: The jury will select the top 25 semi-finalists. The public, through an online survey will vote for the17  finalists. The public will be given two weeks to cast their votes.

Selected artists will be required to sign a contract that includes the following:

  • Artists must submit a high resolution professional quality (at least 150 dpi at full scale) version of their original submission in a proportion that is comparable to the selected traffic box size. The image file should include some bleed and overlap so that the work can be adjusted as needed.
  • Selected works will be licensed from the artist to the Arts Alliance, AADDA and City of Ann Arbor for use on the traffic box wrap in perpetuity and any marketing or publications as they relate to the PowerArt! Project.

Artists should submit works based on wrapping the EPAC 12 Phase box with the understanding that the final image files are required to be 150 dpi at full scale and meet the size requirements of the traffic box selected for installation of their work. There are three different sizes of traffic boxes  upon which works will be installed. These measurements should be considered during the submission process. Dimensions for all three types of power boxes and further instructions can be found in the Site Maps file.


Contracted artists will receive $1,450 for each work selected and installed.


The submission deadline for Round 3 has not been announced.

Submissions must be made online at: www.callforentry.org.  All applicants must pay a $10 entry fee.  However, students may apply at a discounted rate of $5 by using coupon code: STUDENT.

Artists do not fabricate or install the final art on the traffic box. The Arts Alliance will contract a vendor who will take the high resolution professional quality image submitted by the artist and print it onto vinyl that will be applied to the box. The artist is not responsible for the maintenance of the wrapped box.

PROPOSED POWERART! TIMELINE – Round 3 (subject to change)
17  PowerArt! installations in the AADDA District

  • Step 1. Finalize project plan (November 2017 – January 2018) – Partners finalize the project scope, funding, contracts, artwork submission spec, renew the Café™ contract and finalize the call for art and
  • Step 2. Promote call for art & jury (February 2018) – Promotion begins to announce the call for art and jurors using social and traditional media. Juror applications are due and juror selections are made by the end of the month.
  • Step 3. Submission deadline, jury selections and public vote (March – April 2018) – Deadline for artists submissio Jury is convened to select top 30 works. Top works publicized and public vote is announced. Public vote concludes and is tallied. Winners are announced via social and traditional media at the end of May.
  • Step 4. Artists contracted and artwork fabrication (May 2018) – Artist contracts are prepared and executed. High-resolution digital images are delivered to printer for fabrication, printing and then proofing by The Arts Alliance.
  • Step 6. Installation (June 2018) – Signal boxes are prepped and artwork is installed by vendor. Media alert announcing installation photo opportunities and artists’ interviews.
  • Step 7. Celebration (Late June 2018) – A celebration and PowerArt! walk with the artists and public promoted via social and traditional media. Installation photographs taken for AADDA, City of Ann Arbor and added to the MCACA’s MI Amazing Art Tour
  • Step 8. (July 2018) – Wrap and Evaluation. Distribute and collect artist and juror evaluations. Report out to partners. Organize digital files for archiving.


For any questions or concerns about PowerArt! contact The Arts Alliance at 734.213.2733 or info@a3arts.org.

Apply online using the online service, CallforEntry.org™, also known as CaFÉ™ developed by Western State Arts Federation (WESTAF).

Round 3 Deadine is to be announced.

Call For Entry

Find videos and tutorials on how to apply here: https://www.callforentry.org/faq.phtml

Additional help and information:

Watch on Video

Trouble Shooting:

Contact The Arts Alliance when you have questions about:

  • Eligibility or submission rules that are not answered in the listing description.
  • The specific call’s application deadline extension and late-submission policies.
  • The results of the jury review and timeline for notifications.
  • How to edit your application after you have submitted it.

For questions or concerns/to contact The Arts Alliance email Allison Buck at allison.buck@a3arts.org

Contact the CaFÉ™ tech support staff when:

  • You have questions about uploading media or about your portfolio.
  • You encounter an error message on the website that is preventing an action.
  • The CaFÉ™ website cannot be accessed.
  • You need help navigating the website menu or in understanding the site features.
  • You would like to suggest an idea, provide feedback, or just to say hello.

If you have technical questions related to the use of the CaFÉ™ website, contact CaFÉ™ support staff at cafe@westaf.org.