For Artists / Opportunities

Eastern State Penitentiary, PA / Site-specific Installations / Call for Artists

Submission fee


More than eighty artists have created installations for Eastern State Penitentiary’s cellblocks and yards. Some of these installations were among the most successful programming the site has presented, and brought perspectives and approaches that would not have been possible in traditional historic site programming.

We seek installations that will explore Eastern State Penitentiary’s history, and evoke a broad range of emotions. We seek installations that will make connections between the complex history of this building and today’s criminal justice system and corrections policies.

We want to humanize these difficult subjects with personal stories and distinct points of view. We want to hear new voices—voices that might emphasize the political, or humorous, or bluntly personal. We want our visitors to be challenged with provocative questions, and we’re prepared to face some provocative questions ourselves.

In short, we seek memorable, thought-provoking additions to our public programming, combined with true excellence in artistic practice. If our definition of this program seems broad, it’s because we’re open to approaches that we haven’t yet imagined.

Surprise us.

Eligible media

Arts-Related, Craft, Emerging Fields & Cross-Disciplinary, Film/Media Arts, Multidisciplinary Arts, Photography, Public Art, Visual Arts