7 Things To Consider When Submitting Your Art to FIGMENT Oakland

Considering bringing a project to FIGMENT Oakland 2018? Awesome! Before you submit, here are some things you should consider. Think of them as part practical how-to and part inspiration board to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Creativity: Is your project visually stunning and wildly innovative. Does it use materials in an interesting way? Does it have a unique interaction model? Does it teach a new skill or craft? Does it inspire new ideas and new viewpoints? Does it make art seem more relatable?

If the answer is “yes” then you’re ahead of the curve! If the answer is “maybe” or “no”,  reach out to the curation team at [email protected] for tips on increasing the impact of your idea.          

A pop-up movie theater in a box truck from FIGMENT 2014!


  • Interactivity: Your project should provide for ongoing interactivity and participation from FIGMENT visitors. This could be as simple as the way visitors move, influence, touch, or play with your art. Or it could involve working the audience into the course and content of your performance. Or it could involve transforming, adding to, or fundamentally altering the art project over the course of the day. This is a festival, not a fair, so think outside the booth-based framework!

A FIGMENT-themed scavenger hunt from FIGMENT 2014 encouraged participants to get out, explore, and interact with the event.


  • Structural Integrity: If you are bringing an installation to FIGMENT, keep in mind that it will be climbed on by 15 people at a time, kicked, walked on, sat on, picniked on, napped on, etc. – for six straight hours. If it rains - which in September is unlikely - there is limited shelter and grass will turn muddy which will impact both the event and deinstallation.

Keeping that in mind, build for the apocalypse and consider a modular design, with ample volunteer help, for ease of transport, installation, and de-installation. 


How many dozens of children and adults played in this giant ball pit at FIGMENT 2017? The answer - A LOT.


  • Context and Impact: When thinking about your submission, consider how your project will affect other projects. Is it noisy? Does it require quiet? Does it have the potential to be messy? Will it float and soar overhead? Will it be mobile and rove the grounds?

None of these are bad things. None of these are deal breakers. But consider how your work fits into space and how it interacts with its neighbors in both positive and less positive ways.



A community drum circle on the "loud end" of FIGMENT Oakland. If your project causes noise, or needs to be away from noise, let our curators know so they can place you accordingly.

  • Sustainability: Please consider your materials carefully. Where do they come from? Where will they go after the event is over or your performance is done? Given the temporary nature of any installation or performance, consider the eco-minded challenge of creating work from upcycled materials that were either saved from the landfill or can be temporarily appropriated and then reused after the event.

       Some good resources for this are:

How many old CDs and DVDs are kicking around your house? Perhaps there's an art installation in their future too.


  • Feasibility: Please note that you will be responsible for the funding, design, construction, maintenance, installation, execution and de-installation of your project. All projects will be installed, run, and deinstalled on September 29th by the artist’s own team. There are no early installation nor late deinstallation opportunities. Artists are solely responsible for the successful installation and de-installation of their projects in the specified timeframe.

If this won’t work for your project, consider bringing a smaller prototype or abbreviated version of your full installation. Consider this an opportunity to give visitors a sneak peek into the full thing!          

Inflatable installations like the Astro Botanicals are easy to pack in and pack out. If you have an inflatable installation you'd like to bring, talk to the Curation Team about getting access to power.


  • Budget: Think carefully about the materials that you will be using to create your installation or enhance your performance. Since FIGMENT is a completely volunteer run event, we are unable to supply materials or provide funding/stipends. We understand that the finances of art creation are always difficult in a high-rent region such as the Bay. We hope that you will be able to rise to the challenge and think outside the budgetary box, but we also understand that this is not feasible for all artists and practices. 

A painted board + a drill + plastic bottle caps = an art piece with a high impact and low budget.


  • Community Involvement: FIGMENT is a large-scale participatory arts project that is created by a large community of volunteers. We look forward to your being a part of this community, and to help make FIGMENT Oakland 2018 happen. If you’d like to see an artist, community group, or organization take part in FIGMENT, let us know and we can discuss ways to invite them in to our event.

ArtIsMobilUs from FIGMENT 2014 proving that the more the merrier applies to painting as well.

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