252 Main Street, Hamilton, MT 59840 | STORE HOURS: M-F 9am-6pm, Sat. 10am-5pm, Sun. 11am-3pm | 406-363-5220

50th Anniversary Mural Call for Artists

Chapter One Book Store Call for Artists: Public Mural

Project Budget: $5,000-$15,000 depending on artists proposal and bookstore fundraising. Funding for this project will be based on selected proposal and money raised through grants and community contributions.  Fundraising efforts will begin once design is selected and will continue until the project begins in late spring/early summer 2024.  Funds raised in excess of project needs will be donated to the Hamilton Downtown Association Facade Improvement Program for additional public art projects in downtown Hamilton. 

Project Details: In celebration of 50 years as the “Bitterroot’s Book Source,” Chapter One would like to commission an artist or artists to paint a mural on the west side of our building located at 252 W. Main St.  The mural will cover the area pictured below. This side of the building is a mixture of materials including metal, hardie board, wood and stucco.  Preference will be given to projects that incorporate these elements into their design with minimal changes to the actual facade.  The brick on the south end of the building will not be included in the mural, however, the mural could wrap along the north end of the building along the alley.  The area to be painted is 85’ long and 13’2” tall.  There are five former garage bays that are 13’5” x 8’11” recessed 6” from the main wall.  Each bay is edged with painted metal and the interior is hardie board siding with plywood behind.

While we leave creative freedom to artists through their proposals, and encourage submission of original works, proposed murals should avoid political, violent or inflammatory  images or words.  Proposed art should incorporate the natural elements of our landscape while paying tribute to the books within our walls.  Successful proposals will celebrate the core values of the bookstore while representing our community as a whole.  We want the wall to be something all Hamiltonians can be proud of while welcoming visitors to snap photos.  

Bookstore History: Chapter One Book Store was established in 1974 and has been at the current location since the late 1990’s.  Since the bookstore’s establishment it has served not only as a source of books and literary material but also as a hub for cultural and community information and conversation.  Currently owned by Mara, Marisa and Katrina, we offer a place for customers to explore our shelves of new and used books, learn about local events and chat about the daily happenings in our valley and world.  Our mission at Chapter One is to provide a space for all to explore their passions, discover new ones and share them with others.  Get a feel for how our community feels about our business on our google reviews.

Building History:The building itself has been through many lives and owners but was originally a saloon in 1892 then rebuilt in its existing form in 1922 following a fire.  Since then, it has served as a hardware store, fabric store and bookshop among other uses.  The area proposed for a mural at one point was an auto repair garage, with the bays now closed off and covered but still visible on account of the variable materials and receded walls.

About Hamilton, MT: Hamilton is situated in the heart of the Bitterroot Valley with incredible vistas of the Bitterroot and Sapphire Mountains.  The Bitterroot River serves as a keystone element of the natural landscape which attracts visitors from around the world for our fishing, hunting and natural beauty.  Historically the valley was built around apple orchards with truck farms, ranching and hay production as the primary agricultural resources today.  The town itself is approximately 5,000 people with about 40,000 living along the 70 mile stretch of the valley.  

Selection Information: Proposals will be due by 5pm MST September 30, 2023.  A submission will be selected based on proposed design, project budget and availability of artist(s) to complete the work within the proposed timeline.  The selected artist(s) will be notified by November 1, 2023.  Once an artist is selected we will work with the artist to refine the proposed mural to suit all of our needs and desires as a team. Mural work will begin in late spring/early summer 2024 based on weather conditions and artist’s availability.   Chapter One reserves the right to accept or reject any and all submittals, waive technicalities and informalities, change scope of the work, and amend said Call for Artists, and cancel or postpone the project if sufficient funds are not raised for proposed murals.

Application Requirements: Open to professional public muralists and muralist teams, over the age of 18 who have the demonstrated ability to execute a public art project of this scale and budget.

How to Apply: Please complete this application in google forms then send a sketch of your proposed idea and examples of your work as a single pdf document, with the subject line ‘Chapter One 50th Anniversary Mural Submission’ to Katrina Mendrey at books@chapter1bookstore.com