This is a copy of the welcome page for the official site of the 2016 LAGI international design competition.

The Design Guidelines

LAGI 2016 invites creatives, scientists, engineers, and others from around the world to submit ideas for large-scale and site-specific public art installations that generate carbon-neutral electricity and/or drinking water for the City of Santa Monica, California.

Everything that you will require to begin can be found in the sections below.
(click on the "plus" sign to expand each section).


[April 16, 2016]:
1. The latest Question and Answers document is available: LAGI 2016 Q+A
2. You may find the videos below insightful.
They were taken by Barry Lehrman and his students at Cal Poly Pomona during a boat tour around the site.
He has generously shared them under CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 license:
https://vimeo.com/157231018; https://vimeo.com/157231051; https://vimeo.com/157231092; https://vimeo.com/157231142; https://vimeo.com/157231160; https://vimeo.com/157231240; https://vimeo.com/157231334

[March 24, 2016]:
1. New heavy-hitting artists have been added to the official LAGI 2016 jury!

Ned Kahn
Ned Kahn Studios

Freya Bardell and Brian Howe
Principals at Greenmeme

Phillip K. Smith III

See below for the complete juror list.

2. "LAGI-2016-Design-Site-Boundary-Santa-Monica.dwg" inside LAGI2016-LOCATION_PLAN.zip is now the very latest location plan drawing. The only update is that the site section with breakwater heights is now shown in a page layout tab with dimensions for convenience. For those who have not recently downloaded the location plan ZIP file, we recommend that you do so, because that site section is slightly more accurate than the original version from January.

[January 31, 2016]:
1. The latest Question and Answers document is available: LAGI 2016 Q+A
It has been updated on Feb. 13, 2016 to include the following clarification regarding the design site boundary:

Q: If the technology that I would like to use requires a deep ocean component, may this exist outside of the site boundary?

A: For the purpose of this answer, deep ocean components are assumed to be related to technologies like ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC) or deep water desalination that could only function in deep ocean waters. You cannot place wind turbines or solar panels farther offshore or outside of the project boundary simply to increase energy generation because these technologies are not deep-ocean dependent.

You may propose that some auxiliary deep water technology (that requires deep waters to operate) complement your primary public art composition, which itself must respect the site boundary. Such an auxiliary aspect will by nature of its distance from shore have very little visual relationship to the Pier. It is suggested that there be some conceptual relationship to the primary artwork. Judging criteria will be applied to the artwork that is within the project boundary and with one exception allowing energy or water production input from the auxiliary offshore element. Environmental impact is a strong consideration. Please address the impact of any deep ocean technology and shore connections on marine ecosystems in your written statement.

2. New file available for download: StormWater+SewerLayouts.zip contains detailed information on existing storm water and sewer lines in the area around the Pier, a schematic diagram of a future holding tank (Clean Beaches Initiative), and a siting study that shows sewage flow rates.

[January 18, 2016]:

1. "LAGI-2016-Design-Site-Boundary-Santa-Monica_Jan18.dwg" inside LAGI2016-LOCATION_PLAN.zip contains a more accurate diagrammatic cross section through the beach and water.

2. New file available for download: SantaMonicaPier-UpgradesImpactStudy.pdf contains geotechnical information, construction drawings of the pier, historic photos, and more (it is also located inside the new LAGI2016-LOCATION_PLAN.zip file).

Design Guidelines

Download the official PDF version:
2016 LAGI Design Competition Design Guidelines
please consider the environment before printing the document

The 2016 Land Art Generator Initiative, in partnership with the City of Santa Monica and our other project partners, calls on artists and designers to submit proposals for a pragmatic art installation for the design site located adjacent to the iconic Santa Monica Pier. A qualified entry must fulfill the following requirements and be developed to a concept design level of detail.

A qualified entry to the LAGI 2016 design competition must:

      - Consist of a three dimensional sculptural form that has the ability to stimulate and challenge the minds of visitors to the site. The work should aim to solicit contemplation from viewers on such broad ideas as ecological systems, human development and habitation, energy and water resource consumption and production, and/or other concepts at the discretion of the design team;
      - Convert natural energy into electricity and/or drinking water at the site. The artwork must have the ability to store, and/or transform and transmit the electrical power it generates to a grid connection point to be designed by others. Consideration should be made for artfully housing the required transformer and electrical equipment (balance of system) within the project boundary and restricting access to those areas for the safety of visitors to the site. Similar considerations should be made for drinking water production and transmission technology if incorporated;
      - Be pragmatic and constructable, employing technologies that can be scalable and tested. There is no limit on the type of technology that is specified. It is recommended that the design team make an effort to engage the owners of proprietary technology in preliminary dialogue as a part of their own research and development of the design entry. The more pragmatic the proposals are, the greater the likelihood will be that one of them may get built;
      - Not create greenhouse gas emissions and not pollute. The work must not impact the natural surroundings negatively. Each entry must provide a brief (approximately 300 words) environmental impact assessment as a part of the written description. The statement should include a list of the effects of the project on the natural ecosystem and should propose a mitigation strategy to address them;
      - Be well informed by a thorough understanding of the history, geography, restrictions, and details of the design site, and the broader surrounding and regional contexts;
      - Be safe to people who would view it. Consideration must be made for viewing platform spaces and boundaries between public and restricted areas. Boats can access the area around the breakwater, but swimming out to, or near the existing breakwater is prohibited;
      - Be designed specifically to the constraints of the design site at the Santa Monica Pier as shown in the Location Plan (available for download). Designs can (but are not required to) allow visitors to walk within the project boundary;
      - Designs must not exceed 80 meters in height
      (2x the height of the Pacific Ferris Wheel); and
      - Entries must be in English.

Annexes (supplemental downloads)

Files are large. Please try and download with a direct and reliable Internet connection.


This ZIP file includes the official LAGI 2016 location plan (site boundary and context) as a DWG and PDF, along with other contextual drawings.


PHOTOS.zip (133 MB): Single shots
PANORAMIC.zip (441 MB): Compiled wide angle panoramas
AERIAL.zip Aerial photos provided by the City of Santa Monica


This ZIP file includes meteorological data and some publicly available strategic plan documents from the State of California and the City of Santa Monica

Jury and Selection


Senator Ben Allen
California State Senate (District 26)
Chair, California State Legislature Joint Committee on the Arts

Kevin McKeown
Mayor, City of Santa Monica

Ned Kahn
Ned Kahn Studios

Craig Watson
Director, California Arts Council

Eric Corey Freed, RA, LFA, LEED AP
Vice President Global Outreach, International Living Future Institute

Dean Kubani
Director, Office of Sustainability and Environment, City of Santa Monica

Jack Becker
Executive Director, Forecast Public Art + Public Art Review

Jessica Cusick
Cultural Affairs Manager, City of Santa Monica

Elizabeth Corr
Manager Art Partnerships & Events at the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC)

Tom Ford
Executive Director, The Bay Foundation

Dominique Hargreaves
Executive Director, USGBC-LA Chapter

Shari Afshari
Deputy Director, County of Los Angeles Dept. of Public Works

Pauline Kamiyama
Interim Director of Civic Art, Los Angeles County Arts Commission

David Hertz, FAIA
Founder and President, The Studio of Environmental Architecture (S.E.A.)

Freya Bardell and Brian Howe
Principals at Greenmeme

Phillip K. Smith III

Trevor Lee
Principal, Suprafutures

Vicki Scuri
Vicki Scuri SiteWorks

Laura Watts
Associate Professor, Technologies in Practice (TiP) Research Group,
IT University of Copenhagen

Santiago Muros Cortés
LAGI 2014 1st Place Winner


      Adherence to the Design Brief and Submission Requirements
      The integration of the work into the surrounding environment and landscape
      The sensitivity of the work to the environment, and to local, and regional ecosystems
      The estimated amount of clean energy and/or drinking water that can be produced by the work
      The way in which the work addresses the public
      The embodied energy required to construct the work
      The perceived return on capital investment of the work, judged by the complexity of the design in relation to the energy it produces each year
      The originality and social relevance of the concept


Refer to Prizes, Terms and Conditions



JANUARY 1, 2016
Announcement of call to teams

JANUARY 1, 2016 to APRIL 15, 2016
Open period for questions

MAY 15, 2016
Deadline for submission

JUNE 2016
Selection and jury process

JULY 2016
Winners and shortlist contacted

Announcement of winner and award ceremony
Public exhibit of selected entries

Questions & Answers

Please address all questions to lagi@landartgenerator.org
before April 15, 2016. Open period for questions is now closed.

Latest Q+A Document: LAGI 2016 Q+A

Instructions and Submission Format



Submissions will be accepted until May 15, 2016 at 23:59 (11:59pm) GMT.


Register your team by creating an account (see the link in the sidebar).
Under Log In, click Register. Enter your username and email address. You will receive a password and confirmation via email. We recommend that you register the first time you visit the site. This way you will stay informed of all LAGI 2014 competition updates via email.
If you encounter any difficulties, please email lagi@landartgenerator.org and we will register you manually.
Registration is free. Donations are greatly appreciated. (tax-deductible in the USA).


      • Exactly three (3) A1 size layout boards (PDF only).
      A1 size is based on the international ISO 216 standard (594mm × 841mm).
      Each layout board may not exceed 8MB file size.
      Nowhere on the layout boards or written description file can there be any personal identifying information. The jury will see these boards and we must maintain anonymity of the entries. You can show your 8-character code on your boards, but this is not required.
      Layout boards must all be landscape in orientation (for consistency in jury review).
      • One (1) DOC or TXT format text file containing: a 1,200-word maximum written description, technology used in your design, estimate of the annual kWh (kilowatt-hours) generated by your design, dimensions, and list of the primary materials used in your design, and a 300-word maximum environmental impact statement.
      Do not include any identifying information in the written description file.
      We recommend that you come up with a title for your artwork in the written description, but it is not required.
      • Three (3) to eight (8) JPG (300 dpi) image files (without text) or simple diagrams. These should be the same images used in the layout boards. Images can be any orientation and dimension, but must not exceed 20MB each in file size. The purpose of these image files is to facilitate the production of the book with Prestel Publishing. The top 50 submissions will be published in this book for release in fall of 2014. Please note that we might contact you for more images for the purposes of publication and exhibition. CMYK is preferred, but not required.
      • For examples of layout boards, you can visit:
      LAGI 2010 Portfolio
      LAGI 2012 Portfolio
      LAGI 2014 Portfolio
      • Language must be English


      • Teams may submit only one entry to the competition. Individuals may not be on more than one team.
      • Be sure that no personal identifying information is visible on any of your layout boards, written description, or JPG images.
      • Name each file with an 8-character code of your choosing, then underscore, and then the number of the layout page or image.
      11BB3344_1.pdf, 11BB3344_2.pdf, etc. (for your layout boards)
      11BB3344.doc (for your written description)
      11BB3344_1.jpg, 11BB3344_2.jpg (for your text-free images or simple diagrams)
      (do NOT use the example code above)
      • Go to: landartgenerator.org/designcomp and log in.
      • Click “Upload Submission” in the menu above. You will need to be registered and logged in.
      • Upload your files using the online form. Locate each of your PDFs, JPGs, and your text file on your local computer by clicking “Browse” in each upload field. Click the “Upload” button and then proceed to the next field. Make sure that your email address and all other team information is correct, and that all required fields are completely filled in. This is the information we rely on for publications.
      • Please be patient while each file upload is in process and do not navigate away from the page.
      • When finished, you will have the opportunity to continue to a confirmation page where you will find links to all of your files as well as a summary of the team information that you have provided. You will also receive an email with this same information.

Prizes, & Terms and Conditions


First Place: $15,000 (USD) Two members of the first place winning team will be flown to Los Angeles for the award ceremony and exhibition opening. Accommodations and airfare will be provided, but Visas and other travel requirements are the responsibility of the team members.
Second Place: $4,000 (USD)


Download the complete terms and conditions as a PDF:
LAGI 2016 Terms & Conditions


There are no restrictions on team size and/or makeup. The competition is open to everyone, but is in particular aimed at artists, urban planners, architects, landscape architects, and engineers. It is recommended (but not mandatory) that the team be comprised of interdisciplinary members so as to arrive at the most well-conceived result but we also recognize that great ideas can spring from individual efforts.

As an international design competition, the Competition is open worldwide to professionals, any member of the public, and to students. An Entrant may either make a Submission individually or as a team (“Entrant”). Each team shall identify one team member as its Point of Contact (“Point of Contact”) during the upload process.

The following are excluded from participation in the competition:

    All persons or businesses who are or were involved in the organization of the competition or have contributed significantly to formulating the competition design guidelines.
    Representatives or employees of the competition promoter.
    Employees with or partners of any member of the jury or adviser to the jury.
    Persons who are close relatives of or have a close familial relationship with any member of the jury or adviser to the jury.
    Enterprises that are wholly or partly owned by persons who are close relatives of or have a close familial relationship with a member of the jury or adviser to the jury.
    Any employee, volunteer, or board member of Society for Cultural Exchange or the Land Art Generator Initiative.

No matter how a person is involved in the preparation of an entry, he or she must be aware of the above rules. In case of doubt, contact lagi@landartgenerator.org.

SCE shall direct all Competition-related communications to the Point of Contact. Any awarded prize funds shall be distributed to the Point of Contact of the winning Entrant.

A team (Entrant) may be composed of a group of otherwise unaffiliated individuals and/or represent an existing organization, firm, or agency. There are no age restrictions.

Unless awarded a prize pursuant to the rules herein, no Entrant shall receive or be entitled to receive any payment or monies as a result of a Submission or for granting SCE any right herein or associated with the Competition.


Land Art Generator Initiative design competition ("Competition") is a project of Society for Cultural Exchange ("SCE") and is administered solely by SCE. The award money is a cash payment from SCE to the winning designer and is not related to costs of detailed design or construction of the work. There is no guarantee of any of the submitted designs being constructed.

Entry to the Competition is prohibited by Competition judges, their domestic partners, immediate relations, and direct employees. The terms "judge" and "juror" are interchangeable in the context of the Competition. Both terms refer to those individuals listed in the design guidelines document as jurors.

Until the conclusion of the jury selection process, participants cannot reveal the identity of any LAGI 2016 design Submission or share any images or ideas pertaining to any LAGI 2016 design submission to any member of the LAGI 2016 Jury, LAGI 2016 competition partner organizations, LAGI 2016 design site owners, or LAGI 2016 administrative team. By submitting a proposal, each competitor automatically affirms compliance with the competition requirements, rules and guidelines and agrees that any violation will result in immediate disqualification from consideration.
Subject to any limitation herein, any design and intellectual property undergirding a submitted entry ("Submission") remains the property of the participant or participating team ("Entrant") and may be used for their own purposes. Entrants are solely responsible for protecting the intellectual property of a Submission.

SCE shall treat a Submission as being eligible, under U.S. Copyright law, to be entered in this Competition, and that Entrant has the right to submit the Submission.

Submissions that have already been made public, are found to plagiarize any existing design, that may harm public safety, or that are found to infringe on the intellectual property rights of others will be disqualified.

Participants shall have obtained all necessary permission or approval for using any third party’s text, graphics, data, or other materials in their own entries. Participants’ entries shall not contain any irrelevant third party names or logos.

By entering the Competition and without more, each Entrant grants to SCE and the Land Art Generator Initiative an unlimited and irrevocable license to copy any Submission as well as to use the Submission in any way that SCE deems appropriate, including educational, commercial, or any other use. More thoroughly, without further authorization or any compensation owed to or due any Entrant, Entrant grants and authorizes, and SCE shall retain, a perpetual, non-exclusive royalty-free license to use any Submission, or any revision, alteration, change, or similar thereof, at the discretion of SCE, for any purpose, including displaying any Submission by any means anywhere in the world, including in any media which may include displaying a Submission on an Internet website, in a book, and for publication for resale and in museums worldwide, the term of which shall be the entire life of any copyright. Accordingly, Entrant waives any right to SCE's use of Entrant’s Submission in any way. Unless otherwise provided, Entrant retains all rights to their Submission, provided however that SCE may modify, change, alter, or amend the format of the Submission.

The Entrant shall be credited either by collective (team or design firm) name or by individual name(s) at their discretion in all publications and exhibits following the jury decision.
Though SCE shall make commercially reasonable efforts to display appropriate and customary credit lines on any Submission displayed or otherwise featured following the jury decision, SCE shall have no affirmative duty to do so. Thus, Entrant waives any “moral rights” associated therein.

Should Entrant be unwilling or otherwise unable to enter into any license, or provide any authorization, permission and release, or otherwise cannot accept or receive the prize for any reason, or, if in the discretion of SCE, Entrant is not eligible to receive a prize, the Entrant with the next highest score may be chosen from the remaining Entrants until one who is able to meet all requirements can be selected.

Entrant may not sell, resell, assign or transfer any of their rights in their Submissions, or participation in the Competition, and any act deemed so by SCE will result in a disqualification.
Upon request, any Winner agrees to and shall participate to the best of their ability in any publicity and promotional activity surrounding the Competition.

By submitting a design, the Entrant agrees to provide SCE with the right of first refusal to the exclusive use of the design for the purpose of exhibition, publishing, and promotion, and to provide SCE with the right of first refusal for design management and construction management services related to research & development, detailed design, and construction.

The Entrant agrees to allow SCE to use the submitted design in discussions and negotiations with developers, planners, funders, and municipalities in an effort to have the design detailed and constructed.

In the event that SCE exercises the option to use the rights for production (detailed engineering and construction of the winning design) on an exclusive basis and without time limitations, Land Art Generator Initiative shall enter into an agreement with the Entrant and with the owner/developer of the constructed work, the terms of which shall be determined entirely by those agreements.
SCE reserves the right to cancel or suspend the Competition for any reason, including those causes beyond SCE's control that could corrupt the administration, security or proper participation in the Competition.

SCE assumes no responsibility for technical or other conditions including any failure of the online uploading function and/or email transmission that prevent the timely receipt or the judging of a Submission from any Entrant.

Noncompliant Submissions shall be disqualified. SCE is under no obligation to notify the Entrant of a Submission’s disqualification.

If any award-winning Submissions are found to fall under any of these categories later, the award will be cancelled and the prize money withdrawn.


The competition material comprises the guidelines document and the annexes listed below, as well as questions and answers, and any messages provided to the competition entrants directly from lagi@landartgenerator.org.

    00 Design Guidelines (PDF file)
    01 Location Plan (ZIP file)
    02 Photos (Multiple ZIP files)
    03 Supporting Documents (ZIP)


All Submissions shall be vetted for eligibility and strict adherence with all Competition Rules and Criteria as defined herein or in any associated Competition Guidelines (or similar).

Jury review shall be preceded by a shortlisting process in coordination with Partners and informed by community events and public feedback. The shortlisting process shall proceed at the discretion of SCE. Entrants will not be notified of their status with regard to shortlisting.

Jurors shall have no access to the identity of the Entrant but shall refer to the Submissions by their unique 8-digit identification code.

The Jury shall identify through their deliberation a First and a Second place winner. Accordingly, SCE will notify the First Place, Second Place, and Shortlisted entries (“Winners”). SCE reserves the right to change any rubric related to or in identifying any Winner.


By, through, or concerning any Submission, or any revision, alteration, change, or similar thereof, any use thereof, or through participation in the Competition in any way whatsoever, Entrant agrees to release, indemnify, defend, and hold harmless any Party from any liability, any claim for damages, and/or suit for or by reason of said Submission.

As a further condition of entering this Competition, Entrant acknowledges and agrees and therefore covenants not to sue or make any claim against any Party related to an Entrant’s Submission, or any use thereof, and therefore: a. Under no circumstances shall or can the Entrant be entitled to any award for any loss or any damages, which include attorneys’ fees, thereby precluding Entrant from any punitive, treble, multiplied, incidental, consequential, and any other damages. b. Any dispute, claim and cause of action arising out of or connected with this Competition, or any prizes awarded or potentially awarded therein, shall be resolved without resort to any form of action or class action. c. Should an Entrant choose to bring a claim against SCE, or any Party and should any provision herein or a part of a provision thereof not survive legal judgment, Entrant must submit to binding arbitration of SCE's choosing. Should the Entrant fail to prevail on its claim in any forum, the Entrant shall pay SCE's or any Party’s reasonable attorneys’ fees and its costs.

Looking for a Team?

Try setting up an account at LAGI Townsquare!
It's a social site dedicated to LAGI design competition participants. You can search for collaborators based on their area of expertise and set up your profile so that others can easily find you.