ArtWorks News

ArtWorks Receives $262K in State Arts Grants

CINCINNATI—ArtWorks is one of 104 arts-based organizations receiving state economic relief grants. In total, organizations in 33 counties will receive more than $20 million in grants.

Governor Mike DeWine announced the awards as the second round of the Ohio Arts Economic Relief Grant Program, administered by the Ohio Department of Development. In total, more than $43 million in grants have been announced for 243 arts organizations across the state.

This award supports ArtWorks’ continued staff and operations to deliver its mission to foster community-based public art, creating career opportunities for artists of all ages. ArtWorks has spearheaded vibrant projects across 52 neighborhoods in Greater Cincinnati, and surrounding communities with over 300 murals and many additional public art installations. By supporting workforce development and employing 300 talented youth and professional artists annually, ArtWorks facilitates collaborative efforts that make a profound and positive impact throughout our region.

“Ohio artists and arts organizations make our state an attractive place to live, work, and raise a family,” said Governor DeWine. “Ohio is the heart of it all – and by supporting the arts, we continue to ensure artistic excellence.”

The grants announced today will help pay for employee compensation, excluding bonuses; employee recruitment, rehiring, and training expenses; rent or mortgage payments; and operating costs.

“Ohio’s arts and culture are big business in the heart of the heartland,” said Lydia Mihalik, Director of the Ohio Department of Development. “By supporting these organizations, we’re supporting the business of art, which is essential for economic growth but also essential for creating vibrant and diverse communities.”

The grant program was created in partnership with the Ohio General Assembly as part of a bill sponsored by Sen. George Lang (R-West Chester) which was later merged into House Bill 45. The first round, announced in May, awarded more than $23 million to 139 organizations.

“We are profoundly grateful for this generous grant, which addresses the arts and culture sector as vital to the economy and economic recovery in our state. Our heartfelt thanks go to Governor Mike DeWine and all those who have voiced their support for arts funding to maintain staffing and operations for cultural institutions across Ohio,” stated Colleen Houston, CEO & Artistic Director of ArtWorks. “We also appreciate CreativeOhio’s relentless efforts to secure this historic funding for Ohio’s non-profit arts organizations in need of business relief during the ongoing pandemic recovery.”

The program is funded as part of the American Rescue Plan Act, and awards were calculated based on organizations’ loss in revenue from 2019 to 2020 and 2021 and their 2022 operating budget. For more information about the program, visit Development.Ohio.Gov/ArtsGrant

The Ohio Department of Development empowers communities to succeed by investing in Ohio’s people, places, and businesses. Learn more about our work at

Who We Are
Since 1996, ArtWorks has collaborated with community organizations and residents, businesses, governments, foundations, and nonprofits to build creative works of art that support the Greater Cincinnati region’s global reputation as an arts destination. ArtWorks has employed and trained over 3,500 professional artists and 4,000 youth, ages 14–24. We invest in our creative economy by creating jobs that support local talent, pairing professional artists to inspire and mentor diverse teams of youth, and helping them build 21st-century career-readiness skills. Over the past 27 years, this collaborative approach has created a citywide gallery with more than 14,000 public and private art projects, including more than 250 permanent outdoor murals.

2460 Gilbert Avenue | Cincinnati, OH 45206

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