Iowa City Downtown District Announces New Mural Opportunity and Continues Investments in Downtown Public Art Projects

The Iowa City Downtown District, in partnership with Graduate Iowa City and AJ Capital Partners, announces a Request for Proposals for a new large scale mural in the heart of Downtown Iowa City. The mural has a $20,000 budget and will be located in the walkway that connects the Pedestrian Mall to South Dubuque Street, reimagining a small but heavily used corridor in Downtown.

In line with a broader Iowa City Downtown District (ICDD) initiative to develop interest, clean up, and increase safety in the alleys, the new mural seeks to overhaul the pedestrian walkway with a unique and engaging design. Proposals for the 75 foot mural are encouraged to take risks in engaging residents and visitors, and tell untold or little known stories of Iowa City’s history, culture, aspirations, and diversity. The mural may also focus on celebrating Iowa City as a UNESCO City of Literature. “The Graduate Iowa City values supporting local artists with their projects, and we are excited to assist them in rolling out and providing another meaningful opportunity to work with artists in our area.” said Nancy Bird, Executive Director of the Iowa City Downtown District.

Following the six mural projects in 2018, the ICDD is continuing investments in murals, commissioning local artists to paint two new mural projects this summer in the Northside Marketplace. The ICDD is also helping manage and guide projects for those who want to jump aboard, like the new Graduate hotel which is celebrating its one year anniversary in the Iowa City community. “After the last 2 years of mural projects, the way Downtown Iowa City looks and feels has changed dramatically, and we’ve received a huge amount of community support for the additional color downtown,” said Thomas Agran, Director of Public Art for the ICDD. “Our downtown is vibrant, and the walls of our city are starting to reflect, celebrate, and contribute to that vibrancy. It’s thrilling to see all the enthusiasm for the extra color, and exciting to continue helping provide paid opportunities for local artists Downtown.”

Applications for the Graduate Hotel Mural must be submitted by July 22nd, and while the application is open to anyone, preference will be reserved for local artists – women and minorities are encouraged to apply. More information and the RFP can be found at

The Iowa City Mural Project is funded by the University of Iowa Community Credit Union and other private donors, and provides local artists funded opportunities for public art downtown. Interested property owners and businesses in the downtown area can always join the program by contacting Thomas Agran at Community members can get involved and support a project financially or with an in-kind donation by visiting