The Phoenix Awards are an annual awards program which honors and celebrates outstanding artistic achievement in the Lawrence community.

Since the inception of the Phoenix Awards, more than 100 local artists, sculptors, photographers, dancers, musicians, vocalists, educators, writers and literary supporters, administrators, and volunteers have been recognized by their peers and fellow Lawrencians.

There are 10 categories for five awards: Arts Advocate, Arts Administrator, Arts Education, Design Arts, Literary Arts, Musical Arts, Performing Arts, Visual Arts, Volunteer in the Arts, and the Phoenix Award for Exceptional Artistic Achievement. There is also a "Creative Spaces" Award category which recognizes outstanding achievement in imaginative and environmentally forward-thinking place-making.

Phoenix Award Nominations

The Phoenix Award Committee will accept nominations for public or business places whose design and/or function advance the artistic environment of the Lawrence community. 

Nomination instructions are annually available online and solicitations for nominations are typically made over the summer months. Please nominate an outstanding artist, administrator or volunteer! Nominations are accepted throughout the year (PDF)

The Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission members may select more than one winner in any one category and may choose not to present all five awards. A previous winner may be considered for an award in a different category from the first.

The Phoenix Awards are presented at an annual fall ceremony. The ceremony and the reception that follows are open to the public. For questions about nominations, contact Porter Arneill, or 785-832-3402

Phoenix Award Design & Creation

Artist Call/Request for Qualifications (RFQ)

The Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission is seeking a professional Lawrence artist to develop, design, and fabricate innovative, original art for the annual Phoenix Award program. RFQ link

Each year, the Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission accepts nominations and recognizes the outstanding achievements of local artists and people working in the arts.  And, each year, the individual awards for the annual recognitions are commissioned by the Cultural Arts Commission and created by a local artist. If you’re interested in submitting your qualifications to compete for the opportunity to be commissioned for and create the 2018 Phoenix Awards, please fill out the information on the form below for review by the Cultural Arts Commission. The all-inclusive Phoenix Award art project budget is $1,800 and the selected artist will be required to create six awards by October 22nd—one for each awardee and one for display at the Lawrence Arts Center. Artwork for this project will be commissioned through the City of Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission. While creativity and innovation are encouraged, the awards must also be practically suitable for display and very well constructed to be able to survive handling and long-term display.

This opportunity is open to artists who live in Lawrence and Douglas County, KS.

The criteria used by the Cultural Arts Commission will include:

  • Artistic quality, innovation, and originality
  • Excellence in craftsmanship and construction
  • Concept that visually articulates the spirit of the Phoenix Awards

Online application deadline: July 31, 2018 by midnight.

If you have questions, contact Porter Arneill, 785-832-3402 /

Phoenix Award Design Application