Windows for Harvey 2019

Call For Artists





Windows for Harvey is partnering with neighborhood businesses and local artists to create unique displays honoring Harvey Milk on his birthday.

From May 17 through May 26, 2019, artwork will be installed and displayed in Castro storefronts. Windows for Harvey is looking for local artists to submit designs that celebrate and honor the legacy of Harvey Milk.

The theme this year is “Soapbox”. As a community activist, Harvey famously stood on a wooden soapbox to address the gathered members of the community and, at times, to lead them to unite and fight for their rights. Once elected Supervisor, Harvey understood his office served as a soapbox, and he used his time in office to advocate not only for the rights of the LGBTQ community, but for the rights of all in San Francisco who were underrepresented. Today, the soapbox is a symbol of engagement and activism. Each of us is called upon to be engaged, to remain vigilant as rights are being threatened, to stand united with others outside our community who are under attack, and even at times, to fight. So, participants, this year you are invited to get on your soapbox and celebrate Harvey’s spirit of activism, guided by Hope!

Artists are free to explore something related to this year’s theme, or a literal representation of Harvey himself. The goal is to celebrate Harvey and his legacy through art, and possibly, to inspire people to have a conversation about these ideas, much like Harvey Milk did in his life. You are encouraged to work with a spirit of celebration and hope, and to evoke these qualities in viewers of your work. Have fun!

Get Out the Vote!

New for Windows for Harvey 2019 will be active audience participation and awards decided by popular vote! During the event, the public will be invited to view the windows, and then vote for their favorites. There will be two ways to vote–by submitting an online ballot at, or by posting a photo of a favorite window, along with its unique tag, on Instagram. Votes gathered by each method will be tallied and the winners announced in the following categories:

1. Audience Favorite, by Online Ballot

2. Audience Favorite, Most Instagrammed

Separately, there will be another award, selected by a panel, that recognizes the window that best captures the spirit of the event by celebrating Harvey Milk and his legacy:

3. Windows For Harvey Jury Award (Discretionary)

If you are planning to participate in Windows for Harvey this year, let’s see your best work! Create your showstopper, then invite your friends to the Castro to see your creation and vote for your window installation. May the most creative, and most inspirational, window win!


New for this year! To help offset some of the costs of creating this artwork, Windows For Harvey is excited to announce a stipend to be awarded to each artist whose work is chosen to participate. Artists selected to participate will be eligible for a stipend of $125.

Details on how to apply for the stipend will be provided to each artist once participation is confirmed. Stipends are dependent on successful completion of window installation. Please note that installed artwork remains the property of the artist before, during and after the event.


  • The finished installation should be a celebration of Harvey Milk. Thematic entries should be centered around “Soapbox” and the life and/or times of Harvey Milk: Harvey's accomplishments, his legacy, or other contributions suiting the artist. Please avoid overtly political speech that might invite controversy and distract at all from the opportunity to celebrate Harvey Milk.

  • Your submission does not need to be your *final* piece, however you should indicate your design intent through work samples, sketches, etc.

  • 2D or 3D art allowed.

  • Artists will provide their own supplies and materials.

  • Deadline for submission is March 25 at midnight PST.



  • Each accepted artist will be partnered with a neighborhood business to create an installation in the storefront/display window of that business.

  • Notifications will be sent to artists the week of April 1 for the business(es) that would like to work with them. Artist has the right to refuse to work with any particular storefront.

  • All details of the installation will be determined by the artist together with their partner neighborhood business, including method of installation, etc.

  • Installation will occur from Monday, May 13 through Thursday, May 16 in time for the event that begins on Friday, May 17. (Harvey's actual birthday is Wednesday, May 22.) Coordination of installation will be negotiated between the artist and shop owner. If you cannot commit to this installation schedule, please do not submit an entry.

  • Installation of art in the store windows will be for the entire initiative from May 17-26.



  • First, input all information into the form below and click the SUBMIT button.

  • Then, click here and upload your image(s). File size should be less than 3MB. Larger files may not upload properly and so may be disqualified. Your image must be named with your last name. If you are submitting more than one entry, number your submissions accordingly.

  • Remember to describe your image and/or your design intent as best you can. Include anticipated dimensions of your final piece.

  • That's it! We will notify you of your inclusion in this initiative via email no later than April 5.


Send any questions regarding the Call for Artists to



How will the event be marketed?

The event will be marketed extensively including:

  • Event website with images of the artwork and a link to the artist website.

  • Artwork in storefronts will be labeled with artist name, title of piece and artist website.

  • Participation show at close of installation where you may offer your piece for sale.

  • Various social media promotions.


How are the artists compensated for the work?

The art piece remains the property of the artist at all times. You may choose, and you are encouraged to, offer your art piece for sale during the installation and the participation show at the close of the initiative. All proceeds from any sale during the installation go directly to the artist.  Sales during the participation show may be subject to a standard gallery commission.


What is the size of the window I will be working with?

The sizes of the window in which the artwork will be installed is dependent on which merchant you are working with. Once you have been partnered with a participating merchant, you will work directly with them on dimensions and placement of your artwork.


Can purchased artwork be removed from the installation?

No, all artwork must remain in place for the duration of the installation.

 How will the awards be determined?

Two awards, the “Audience Favorite, by Vote” and “Audience Favorite, Most Instagrammed” will be a tally of votes submitted online and number of Instagram tags for a specific window. The “Windows For Harvey Jury Award” will be voted on by members of the community from all backgrounds that have been selected by event organizers.


By submitting your entry to this promotion, you agree to your name being listed in promotional materials, both in print and online, as well as agreeing to have photographs (with credit) of your work used for event promotion for this and future events associated with this annual event.

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