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ArtWorks empowers and inspires the creative community to transform our everyday environments through employment, apprenticeships, education, community partnerships, and civic engagement.
Over the past 18 years, ArtWorks has grown from a small, arts-based youth employment initiative to a proven community leader, sustaining a budget of more than$2.5M annually. To date, ArtWorks has hired over 2,500 area youth and 650 professional artists, and has trained nearly 200 creative entrepreneurs. Our combined initiatives have helped transform neighborhoods blending ubiquitous public art, entrepreneurship and employment opportunities for our youth and creative professionals.
Through our ArtRx division, we transform healthcare environments for patients, families and staff to improve their daily experiences.
Our award-winning Public Art program is our most far reaching and dynamic programming effort. We have made our city a gallery, showcasing art in public spaces for everyone to share and enjoy. As part of this initiative, ArtWorks hires more than 140 youth Apprentices, ages 14 to 21, from 58 local schools and 65 surrounding neighborhoods every summer. Youth Apprentices work in small teams alongside a professional artist for six- to eight-weeks, during which time they hone their artistic abilities, learn to work collaboratively and gain confidence. 53% of our Apprentices come from low income households, and we provide these at-risk youth with critical opportunities to earn income and develop professional skills. At the community level, our projects enlist residents, business owners, neighborhood councils and local Apprentices to actively participate in the mural’s concept and creation. Since 2007, ArtWorks has created 68 murals in 40 neighborhoods and towns throughout greater Cincinnati.
The ArtWorks Creative Enterprise division fuels economic growth by supporting creative entrepreneurship. CO.STARTERS, our nine-week business development course, walks aspiring and seasoned entrepreneurs through lean-startup business methodologies relying on support from the local business community to share their expertise with participants. Graduates of ArtWorks Creative Enterprise have gone on to launch more than 27 successful businesses. ArtWorks Big Pitch, a competition awarding cash and professional services to artisan entrepreneurs, leverages sponsorship and in-kind support from local businesses and established entrepreneurs to promote creative talent and ingenuity.
- Sara Lawellin
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