Call for Participants for Virtual Sculpture Racing – SUPERSEDED

People’s Sculpture Racing at the Cambridge Arts Stream Festival

Please note, this version of the call has been superseded.
Please see the above version.

People’s Sculpture Racing invites you to participate in a stay-at-home project to be broadcast by the Cambridge Arts Council as part of its Stream Festival from late April through June 6. Everyone may join, of any age, in any location, and it’s free.

Create and perform any or all of the four events below, and email us the video, which we will edit. If it follows our guidelines, it will appear on our website and the Arts Council website, and likely be broadcast on Cambridge Community TV. We anticipate there will also be live and recorded interviews with many participants via Zoom. Stay tuned! This is a project in progress!

  1. The Traditional People’s Sculpture Race

Build a sculpture and race it 300 meters outdoors. It must be human-powered. Bikes not allowed. Measure the distance, set up a start and finish line, countdown from ten and say Go! Or Start! or some such, and race, measuring the time. Please include a video long-shot of the whole race, and also close-ups shots, by re-running the race as necessary. See traditional race guidelines here.

  1. Stage a Race

Be creative and interpret this as you see fit. It can be indoors or outdoors, and in any medium. You can follow the traditional definition of a race, as a competition of speed moving from one place to another as quickly as possible. Or you can perform a creative project quickly, or at whatever speed you like. As above, count down from 10.

Here are a few suggestions to create a race, even if you are on your own.

  • Hold a simultaneous group event by using Zoom or other platforms.
  • Race a measured distance (3’ or 30’) as if you are racing someone else. Our video editors will combine your and others’ submissions.
  • Video yourself/yourselves wearing different costumes, racing different sculptures We will edit them together.
  1. Draw/schematize a racing sculpture or build a prototype

Include video demonstration and explanation along with a still. Create and video a whole gallery if you like. Can be a 3-D CAD.

  1. Write/compose/choreograph and perform

Create and perform an original song, poem, or manifesto. Must be performed live. We recommend un-copyrighted melodies to put your lyrics to (look up free music sites, e.g. Lyrics may follow themes of our lives during the pandemic or of sculpture racing themes, if you like.


Send work anytime from now until the deadline of Sunday, May 31. The Festival’s grand finale is Saturday, June 6. We need to edit it before it goes live. The earlier you send work, the longer it will be shown. We’ll do our best to include all submissions, but that may depend on the number of submissions and how early we receive them.

Are There Prizes?

We will bestow virtual prizes or certificates to the best three of each category (1st, 2nd, 3rd place), in both the youngster and the teen/adult/family categories. Additionally, we will endeavor to interview you live (in different locations, of course) and give you pride of place. Here are the categories by which your work will be judged:

  1. The overarching aesthetic is spectacle (visually striking performance or display) and capturing the imagination.
  2. Originality, creativity, sense of humor, whimsy, significance
  3. We encourage projects that are total art events, including performance, sound art, costumes, kinetic objects, and an extraordinary background.
  4. All works must be human-powered, no motors or canned music allowed!

Video Tips

  1. Keep the background simple and quiet, so the focus is on your event (the event vs. the background may be complex and loud by design).
  2. Include extra footage of your event from different angles; stage the event multiple times if needed.
  3. Record for 10-15 seconds before and after your event.
  4. If using a phone, shoot landscape view!
  5. If using a video camera, set for highest quality, at 30 (or 29.7) frames per second (FPS), and make sure the mic is on. Use the stereo setting.

The Submissions Agreement

Although the events are videotaped, the project in general is not envisioned to be about art videos. A Submissions Agreement allows us to remix and edit your contributions, so that we can broadcast videos focusing on events as well as individual teams/artists. For this reason, we are primarily looking for unedited or slightly edited footage.

If you want your video to be considered as a stand-alone, finished work–as long as it is clearly made for this project, we will host it, though you will have to add a video bumper and we may use excerpts as above. Aim for five minutes. We expect work to be made for this event and to not include any commercial elements, other than your own branding. We will not sell your works.

How to Submit Your Work

  1. Please send about five minutes of original video (10 minutes max) per event, created for this project, in an MP4 or MOV format.
  2. All videos must be accompanied by a Submissions Agreement
  3. Email video and Agreement to In the subject line first put: “Festival – [Your name/team name]”.
  4. This is the first time we’ve done anything like this, so we may need to change parts of this. It’s a good idea to let us know you’re planning to submit, so we can tell you about any changes or opportunities. Also keep an eye on our website.

About People’s Sculpture Racing

People’s Sculpture Racing, a Cambridge-based voluntary group under the fiscal umbrella of The Cambridge Arts Council, produces two annual outdoors races of artists’ and community-built sculptures, and organizes STEAM racing-sculpture courses. Please see our website for more about us.

Please be sensible and follow isolation rules.
Stay at home; do minimal shopping
If you stage your event outdoors, don’t attract spectators.