Long Beach Airport is looking for local women artists to submit art with “uplifting and hopeful messages related to the pandemic” for an exhibit expected to be on view by December. On Tuesday, in partnership with the Arts Council for Long Beach, organizers announced submissions are now open.

Interested artists, who are allowed to submit multiple pieces, must upload their submissions to https://artslb.org/airport-artist-call/ by midnight on Saturday, Nov. 14. The selected works will be printed and displayed on large construction barriers in areas with high foot traffic for at least six months. Artists will receive a $500 honorarium for each piece selected, with 19 pieces to be chosen by a panel.

Courtesy artslb.org

Offering women artists this opportunity aligns with the ACLB’s National Endowment for the Arts grant to support women-identifying artists, honoring the 100-year anniversary of the 19th Amendment, as well as its Keep Arts Working program, established during the pandemic to draw attention to the impact COVID-19 has had on local artists. The city’s Percent for Arts Program, which takes one percent of capital construction projects to support the arts, provided funding.

“A partnership with Long Beach Airport during a pandemic and a national struggle for racial justice means so much,” said Griselda Suarez, Executive Director for the ACLB, in a statement. “Long Beach Airport is making room for artists who identify as women to express themselves. We are grateful for this opportunity for visual art to be a vehicle to illuminate our lives and also alleviate our stress.”

This isn’t the first time the airport has collaborated with local creatives to liven up its outdoor areas, offering artists exposure while decreasing travelers’ stress. In 2018, organizers partnered with Cal State Long Beach to bring in four art installations from students and recent graduates of its School of Art. In February, just before the pandemic, LGB had begun a series of pop-ups called “Make Flying Fun Again” by bringing in poet Brian Sonia-Wallace to write poems on the spot for travelers to give to their loved ones in celebration of Valentine’s Day.

“The pandemic has hit the aviation industry very hard,” said Airport Director Cynthia Guidry in a statement. “We are excited to support our local arts community and to display artwork that is timely and relevant for our travelers and the general public.”

Asia Morris is a Long Beach native covering arts and culture for the Long Beach Post. You can reach her @hugelandmass on Twitter and Instagram and at [email protected].