2014 Sculpture in the Garden

Call for Entries

back to the

Sculpture in the Garden page

Mission Statement
The mission of the Ruth Bancroft Garden, Inc. is to preserve this exceptional example of garden design and to continue to develop its collection of water-conserving plants for the education and enjoyment of the public.
Grant Funders

The Ruth Bancroft Garden would like to recognize the following grant funders:

The Quest Foundation for funding our Education Coordinator’s position

The Mervyn L. Brenner Foundation for funding our directional signs

The California Horticultural Society for funding towards our restoration projects

The Bonita Garden Clubfor funding restoration and education projects


The Stanley Smith Horticultural Trust for funding out nursery renovation


Additional Resources




Exhibition Date: June 13 - July 13, 2014

Entries Due: Sunday, March 2, 2014

About the Exhibition: The Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek, California is a world renowned public garden famous for its extensive collection of rare succulent and drought-tolerant plants, trees, and shrubs. It provides a spectacular backdrop for artists to display their sculptures along the meandering garden paths. Each year, dozens of  artists, including many new to the Bay Area art scene, produce and install public-scale outdoor sculptures. More than 2,000 people came to visit the Garden during the month-long show in 2013. 69 works sold during the show itself, and sales continued after the show closed, with artists receiving increased interest as well as commissions as a result of being showcased.

Prizes: 1st place: $750, 2nd place: $500, 3rd place: $250

Joe Bologna Stan Huncilman Archie Held  

Submitting: There is no submission fee. Sculptures of all media appropriate for outdoor gardens will be considered. Please use the online submission form at the bottom of this web page. If you require a hard copy submission form, call the garden's office: (925) 944-9352. In general, only completed works may be submitted for judging. Works in progress may be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please send an email to sculpture@ruthbancroftgarden.org for approval before submitting any work in progress. For series pieces, you should submit one photo that shows or is representative of the entire series and indicate the individual prices or the price range.

Site Logistics: The average display site is 3’ wide, 3’ deep, and 6’ high. There are a limited number of spaces for sculptures that are wider (up to 8’) and/or taller (up to 20’). Sculptures will be located along the garden's gravel pathways, not in garden beds. Sculptures must be adequately secured for safety and stability without below-ground excavation. There are only a few locations that can accommodate fountains, lit sculptures, or other works that require electricity. Please specify if your sculpture requires water or electricity, and also be aware that the Garden is not open after dark.

Selection: A jury will choose which pieces will be accepted and will also award prizes. The 2014 jurors are:

Chandra Cerrito, Director, Chandra Cerrito Contemporary

Chandra Cerrito is an art consultant, curator and gallery director in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2004, she started her own art consulting firm, Chandra Cerrito / Art Advisors, in Napa, CA, which focuses on corporate, hospitality and health care collections as well as public art advisory services. Since 2003, Cerrito has been an independent curator, creating exhibitions for institutions such as Dorsky Curatorial Programs in Long Island City, NY, the Sonoma County Museum, di Rosa in Napa and the Sonoma Museum of Contemporary Art in Santa Rosa. Cerrito’s latest curatorial project is a brick-and-mortar gallery located at the heart of downtown Oakland’s arts district. Established in 2007, Chandra Cerrito Contemporary features exhibitions and site-specific installations that highlight exceptional regional and national artists, with an emphasis on conceptual strength, refined craftsmanship, contemporary vision and art historical relevance.

Carrie Lederer, Curator of Exhibitions and Programs, Bedford Gallery

Carrie Lederer is the curator of exhibitions and programs at the Bedford Gallery in Walnut Creek, California. Before coming to Bedford, Lederer was curator of exhibitions and public programs at the Cultural Center in San Rafael, California, where she organized numerous shows, including Guerilla Girls Talk Back: A Retrospective. She is also an award-winning artist whose work has been exhibited internationally.

Debra Lehane, Curator, The Voigt Family Sculpture Foundation
Debra has a lifetime association with art. She holds a Master of Arts in Museum Studies from John F. Kennedy University in Berkeley, California with an emphasis on Education and Public Programming. Her thesis topic was a “state of the field” review of sculpture parks and gardens in the United States. Debra received her Bachelor of Arts from Anderson College. After teaching art for two years in the public schools of rural Indiana, she went to work in the Registrar’s office at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. When she left SFMOMA, she was the Associate Registrar in charge of exhibitions. From 1984-1985 she was Registrar for the University Art Museum at the University of California, Berkeley. In 1985 she accepted the challenge to build a program for the San Francisco Arts Commission, developing and administering the Civic Art Collection Program. She retired from her position as Program Director for the Civic Art Collection at the Arts Commission in 2004 after 19 years of service.

Invitational Component ("Art Walk"): In addition to the juried "Sculpture in the Garden," there will be an invitational "Art Walk." The Art Walk has been a component of several past sculpture exhibits. It provides a venue for smaller or more inexpensive pieces, garden vessels or planters, unique outdoor furniture, or the work of emerging artists. These works will be displayed concurrently in the Garden but will be physically separate from the juried show. Artists not chosen by the jury may still be chosen by RBG staff to participate in the Art Walk, and the same terms of agreement apply.

Terms of Agreement - Please Read Carefully!

Submission of work constitutes an agreement to the conditions set forth and acceptance that the decisions of the Committee and the Jurors are final. The Ruth Bancroft Garden may photograph accepted work for promotional purposes. Artists may not withdraw accepted entries before the close of the exhibition without having a suitable replacement approved. Submitted images must reflect an accurate representation of the work or risk rejection at time of installation. Artists are responsible for installing work and providing waterproof pedestals if needed. All artwork must be for sale to enter the exhibition.

Pricing: All price ranges are welcome, but artists should be aware that pieces priced under $5,000 are the most likely to be purchased. This event is a fundraiser; the Garden's commission is 35%. Please note if there will be a delivery fee above the selling price.

DurabilitySculptures must be stable and freestanding and will likely be exposed to automatic sprinklers on several occasions during the month-long exhibit. Please note that the Garden irrigates with well water, which is high in minerals and leaves spots on most dark surfaces. The water may also react poorly with some finishes.

Liability: Artists assume all responsibility for loss or damage not covered by the Garden's insurance policy. There is a gated entrance to the Garden, which is locked each night, and there is a video alarm system by Bay Alarm. There has never been an instance of theft or vandalism in the past 19 years of the Sculpture in the Garden.

Notification: Artists will be notified by mail and/or email if their work has been accepted by March 29, 2014.

Delivery and Pick-Up: Works are to be delivered and installed by the artists between June 3 and June 6, 2014. Works are to be removed between July 15 and July 18, 2014.

Event Attendance: Artists are strongly encouraged to be present at the events during the month of the exhibit: Opening Night (June 13), Opening Weekend (June 14 and 15), and the Art & Jazz Sunset Social (July 11). Artists are granted free admission to all events and may bring one "at-cost" guest to Opening Night.

Fill out my online form.


The Ruth Bancroft Garden GardenConservancy