ArtWorks News

Our Vibrant Queen City: Cincinnati ranks as one of top metro areas for Arts Vibrancy

ArtWorks is proud to announce Cincinnati is one of the nation’s top metro areas for the arts, according to the Southern Methodist University’s SMU DataArts sixth annual Arts Vibrancy Index.

This is the first time ever the Cincinnati metro area has appeared on the list, ranking at number 20 on the list.


Photo of 2 ArtWorks murals in Downtown Cincinnati by J. Miles Wolf.

Excerpts from the report about Cincinnati’s listing states the following about ArtWorks and BLINK®: “The city is adorned with mural art painted over the last 25 years by arts apprentices in a youth employment program…In 2017 and again in 2019, Cincinnati created a new four-day festival called BLINK®, one of the largest light, art, and projection mapping events in the nation. In 2019, nearly 1.5 million people visited Cincinnati to experience BLINK, which spanned 30 city blocks and two states by crossing over the Ohio River into Kentucky.”

Artist Anne-Marie Paquette with ArtWorks’ Senior Director of Development, Daniel Tonozzi, interacting with L4Studio + Brave Berlin 2019 BLINK installation commissioned by ArtWorks. Photo by Sandra Okot-Kotber.

We are proud to have contributed to the region’s global reputation as an arts destination and to be named among other prestigious organizations such as ArtsWave, Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, and the University of Cincinnati’s CCM and DAAP colleges.

“Cincinnati’s emergence on the Arts Vibrancy Index is a tribute to our history of strong citizen support for the arts,” said ArtsWave President & CEO Alecia Kintner in a release. “In a year of unprecedented disruption and uncertainty, it’s gratifying to see our region’s arts landscape affirmed as among the country’s most vibrant along with other regions that we compete with for employees, business relocations and tourists.” Read more in ArtsWave’s release.

Read the full report

About ArtWorks

ArtWorks is an award-winning Greater Cincinnati nonprofit that transforms people and places through investments in creativity. The organization creates jobs for youth, ages 14-21 with the majority from underserved households, providing competitive 21st-century career-readiness skills through mentorship by professional artists. Since 1996, ArtWorks has employed more than 3,600 youth and 3,200 creative professionals, and the organization has completed more than 12,500 public and private art projects that include 190 permanent outdoor murals, contributing to the region’s global reputation as an arts destination. Learn more at