cool gardens 2019

Call for Submissions: Cool Gardens 2019

Submission: April 15, 2019
Registration: April 15, 2019
Language: English 
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Prizes: Please see details below
Type: Open


Storefront Manitoba and The Forks invite design teams to submit proposals for a temporary, contemporary garden installation to be located at The Forks in Winnipeg. We are asking you to put your skills to work and challenge the concept of garden and cool(ing). We are looking for an intervention that has the power to stop people in their tracks!

Cool Gardens is a public garden, art and architecture exhibition that offers a shift of sensation for the summer—cooling—as a general theme. The project brings architects, designers, landscape architects, and artists together to celebrate contemporary garden culture and the local landscape. Cool Gardens takes place annually from the beginning of July until the end of September.

The Call for Entries 2019 seeks creative entries that prompt curiosity, play, and appreciation of urban spaces by highlighting the significance of nature, art, and design. Central to Cool Gardens is the idea that contemporary design can instigate participation in public spaces in interactive, critical, poetic, and meaningful ways. The intention of this emergent festival is to provoke questions about our public spaces and about the role of landscape architecture and design to give enhanced meaning and value to our urban culture. Cool Gardens thus animates our public spaces with a critical collection of experiences – expanding the idea of what a garden might be. Cool Gardens expands the vocabulary of garden design and serves as a learning tool. As we go back to our boulevards and backyards we hope to spread the creativity of Cool Gardens to the everyday practice of gardening in our city and region, creating in the process a dialogue on contemporary design with our sister cities across Canada and the world.


While there is no overarching competition theme, entrants are expected to be responsive to the specificity of site within the overall framework of cooling. Proponents may also wish to indicate how their garden would be feasible to re-mount in subsequent years. Winning proposals will be selected by the jury based on: artistic merit, creativity, originality, clarity, durability, provisions for barrier-free access, ease of fabrication and decommissioning, budget, interpretation of site and cooling, safety, and most importantly, potential for public engagement.


Final budgets for the gardens will be subject to funding, the recommended breakdown is as follows: – Team / Artist Fees $1,500 – Hardscaping: $2,500 – Softscaping: $3,500 – Labour/installation: $2,500 – Total Budget: $10,000 The winning entrants will manage and oversee the construction of the gardens in consultation with Cool Gardens curators. Installation of the gardens will be executed by the designers, or managed by them and paid for from the Total Budget: In addition, up to $1000 will be provided to help offset transport and accommodation costs for each winning team from outside the province of Manitoba. Out-of-province teams are encouraged to seek travel grants from their own jurisdictions to make up the difference. Teams are also encouraged to source additional funding or in-kind contributions for their installations if actual costs exceed the Total Installation Budget. Gardens may be exhibited for more than one year. In the case where a garden is re-mounted, the design team will receive an additional honorarium.


Installations shall not require significant excavation or permanent damage to existing infrastructure. – Installations shall not require sub-surface foundations. Components may be staked to the ground provided the depth of staking does not exceed 12”. – The cost of decommissioning and site restoration shall, in the opinion of the competition technical reviewer, not exceed $1000. – At least one member of each winning team must be in Winnipeg during the Installation Period.


February 28, 2019 Call for Proposals launched

April 15, 2019 [6PM CST] Deadline for Registration + Submissions

April 25, 2019 Confirmation of Eligibility & Adjudication

May 3, 2019 Announcement of Winner

May 15, 2019 Detailed Design Submission + Review

June, 2019 Shop fabrications and ordering

July 2-7, 2019 Installation Period

July 5 & 6, 2019 Media Event & Garden Party

September 28, 2019 Closing and decommissioning

Go to the competition’s website