ArtsWave Black grants near $750K

ArtsWave has announced another $190,000 in Black and brown artist grants, nearing three-quarters of a million dollars in impact.

At a recent board meeting, the nation’s first and largest united arts fundraising organization approved grants totaling $190,000 for 19 local BIPOC artists in the third year of funding for its Black and Brown Artist Grants program.

As a key component of ArtsWave’s diversity, equity, inclusion and access strategy, “Lifting as We Learn,” the grants program is one of several funding initiatives that have increased resources for Black and brown arts, funding 68 artist projects with $744,608 in grants over the past three years.

“Each of the nearly 70 artists tells a different story through their work, and in doing so, we come together as a community to better understand and appreciate the value we bring to each other,” said Alecia Kintner, ArtsWave president and CEO.

Alecia Kintner

As in the past, a multidisciplinary artist showcase will be held in summer of 2023. Each of the projects will include an aspect of public performance and/or display.

This year’s grants will focus on the themes of healing, rebirth and reconnecting. The grants are made possible by the ArtsWave campaign in partnership with the city of Cincinnati, Duke Energy, Macy’s, Greater Cincinnati Foundation and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

The 19 grant recipients were selected out of a competitive group of 48 applicants from across the region. The recipient’s projects will explore and build upon the current artistic commentary of health and race and connect it with historical events and visions of a more equitable future.

The projects not only represent the African American experience, but also the experiences of those with Mexican, Lebanese, Somali, Argentinian and Zimbabwean heritage.

ArtsWave’s Black and Brown Artist Grants are designed to provide financial support so that Black and brown artists in the Cincinnati region can continue to interpret the themes of our times. The program is one way that ArtsWave is working to increase the sustainability of organizations and artists that focus on the preservation and advancement of Black arts and culture.

Artists are asked to involve some aspect of collaboration with community members and other partners in their projects, so that the larger public can participate in reconciling the moment and imagining a more just and equitable future for the Cincinnati region through the arts.

Additionally, professional development services are provided to the artists to help them through the grant writing process and beyond. ArtsWave presented a series of grant writing workshops and mentoring prior to the grant submission deadline. Partnering with Wave Pool, all grant recipients will complete a “Driving Lessons” program, along with monthly networking and progress meetings with ArtsWave staff and consultants.

ArtsWave in 2022 raised $11.5 million, which it uses to support 150 arts organizations, school outreach programs, festivals, community centers, neighborhoods and various collaborations through impact-based grants. These grants create thousands of concerts, shows, exhibitions, arts for school children, public art, festivals and events like BLINK.

Launched by the Cincinnati Taft family in the late 1920s, ArtsWave became the nation’s first united arts fund in the late 1940s, initiated the nation’s first arts workplace giving program in the mid-1970s and remains the nation’s largest arts fundraising organization.

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