Request for Proposals – Exhibition Concept Development, Alabama African-American Civil Rights Heritage Sites Consortium

  • 05 Aug 2019 1:02 PM
    Message # 7812868
    John Witek (Administrator)

    Alabama African-American Civil Rights Heritage Sites Consortium Request for Proposals – Exhibition Concept Development August 2019

    Organizational Profile

    The Alabama African American Civil Rights Heritage Sites Consortium, managed by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, is a collaboration among 20 historic places of worship, lodging and civic engagement that played significant roles in the African American struggle for freedom. While recent history focuses on the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, these individuals and institutions have been dedicated to improving the quality of Black life since Reconstruction. The Consortium includes sites in Montgomery, Birmingham, Selma and the Black Belt. Nominated by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the Consortium was named to the 2018 World Monuments Fund Watch of 25 globally significant sites facing compelling conservation challenges in October 2017. Since then, the sites have participated in needs assessments, trainings, public relations and documentation initiatives supported by the Educational Foundation of America, J.M. Kaplan Fund and World Monuments Fund.

    Description of Need

    The Alabama African-American Civil Rights Heritage Sites Consortium, headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, seeks an experienced exhibition developer or curator to execute the concept development phase of the Call and Response (working title) exhibition project. The selected consultant will develop and propose multiple conceptual approaches for the exhibition, draft the concept document and exhibition storyline, and provide overall guidance on the exhibition development process, specifically during the concept phase. The consultant’s work product(s) will provide the conceptual framework and content parameters necessary to inform the RFP for the schematic design phase of the project.

    The working title Call and Response is typically associated with African and African American musical traditions, but it also describes the activism that occurred at historic sites throughout Alabama in the struggle for African American freedom and equality. The need for action to combat racism, discrimination and disenfranchisement was the “call” and the “response” was the activism of individuals and institutions that comprise the Consortium. In fact, many of these institutions began in the late 1800s as part of a collective community “response.”

    Ideally, the consultant’s exhibition proposal will reflect the idea that the modern civil rights era, typically dated in the mid-twentieth century, has a much longer history than is often interpreted. The sites that comprise the Consortium are testament to that long history and the consultant’s work product will bring this fact to light. During the term of the project, the consultant will work with members of the Consortium to determine the appropriate approach for the exhibition project, with two approaches:

    *a travelling exhibition suitable for installation at community venues (including Consortium sites).

    *a larger more fixed exhibition suitable for installation at larger venues such as museums or similar spaces.

    Timeline, Budget, and Deliverables

    The selected consultant’s work will begin in late summer 2019 and conclude by the end of 2019. The final work product which will include the final concept document and exhibition storyline should be executed per the proposed timeline outlined below. The proposed budget for work is not to exceed $20-25,000, including approved travel.

    Tasks will include:

    • Meeting with Consortium members and stakeholders to define the goals of the Call and Response project and to agree upon project deliverables and final schedule
    • Conducting necessary research on overarching theme(s) and individual sites in preparation for executing concept and approach documents
    • Provide leadership in decision making related to exhibition approaches
    • Produce and revise exhibition approach and concept documents
    • Produce final exhibition concept document that includes a description and vision for the exhibition, along with a storyline that identifies specific strategies for exhibition interpretation
    • Any follow-up activities beyond the above will be negotiated under a separate contract

    RFP Process and Timetable

    Interested consultants should submit the following to be considered for Call and Response:

    • A proposal of not more than five pages in length that describes your qualifications specific to this project, how you will address the outlined tasks, and a projected timeline
    • A CV or resume that reflects demonstrated experience developing creative history and culture exhibitions
    • Three references from clients and/or organizations with which you have worked in the past 3-5 years
    • At your discretion, you may include additional support material of relevance to the project

    Proposed Schedule

    Request for Proposals distributed August 1, 2019

    Proposals due August 26, 2019

    Proposal review and phone consultations September 3-5, 2019

    Selected consultant notified September 9, 2019

    On-Site Meeting To be scheduled

    Exhibition Approaches draft due October 15, 2019

    Revised Exhibition Approach document due November 15, 2019

    Final Concept document (including Storyline) due December 30, 2019

    If you have questions regarding the proposal process, please contact:

    Priscilla Hancock Cooper

    Project Director

    Proposal materials should be submitted electronically no later than August 26, 2019 to:

    Priscilla Hancock Cooper

    Project Director