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How the Cincinnati region’s arts are funded


It’s Black History Month, and with the arts season in full swing, you have plenty of experiences to choose from as you celebrate. Meanwhile, ArtsWave’s Catalyzing Impact grants, which aim to spark new and expanded arts experiences, are open for applications. Find more information and apply for a grant at artswave.org/apply.

The Catalyzing Impact Grant program, like many others, are only possible because of the hundreds of companies and tens of thousands of people who come together each year for the ArtsWave Campaign. It’s how the arts are funded in the Cincinnati region, which is more important than ever after two years of pandemic-related revenue losses for the sector totaling over $140 million. The 73rd annual ArtsWave Campaign kicked off this month with a goal to raise $11.5 million. When you chip in to help reach that goal at artswave.org/give, your gift helps support more than 150 projects and cultural organizations.

ArtsWave, Cincinnati Bell and the City of Cincinnati worked together to kick off the campaign by unveiling a new design for one of the Cincinnati Bell Connector streetcars. The design, "WE ARE ALL 'HUE-MAN,'" comes from local artist Brent Billingsley. It speaks to the importance of the arts in connecting us as one community and celebrating all of the “hues” that make up mankind. Billingsley also composed a companion poem, which he presented as his work was unveiled. His work, curated as a traveling art exhibition, is aboard the streetcar from now until March 4, so please check it out.

The arts had no shortage of big announcements in February. A week after ArtsWave’s Campaign kicked off, BLINK® leadership announced that the massive light, art and projection mapping festival is coming back this year, illuminated by ArtsWave. BLINK smashed event attendance records, with an estimated 1.2 million people experiencing it in 2019. Once again, a newly designed streetcar wrap — this one featuring photos from BLINK —was unveiled along with the news. Mark your calendar now so you don’t miss out on its return from October 13-16, 2022.

In the meantime, take in the arts and celebrate Black History month. You can see a few highlights below. For a more comprehensive list, visit artswave.org/TheCircleEvents.





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