A pioneering survey assesses the needs of local artists

Two prominent Cincinnati art organizations have collaborated on a pioneering survey to assess the needs of artists in the Cincinnati area. The questionnaire can be viewed here, and artists are required to complete the survey by August 31.

The survey is the brainchild of Anissa Lewis of ArtWorks and Cal Cullen of Wave Pool. The results will populate a first time Cincinnati Artist Report assessing what resources and opportunities artists would like to have available to them.

Throughout August, four youth apprentices from ArtWorks led by Lewis, a local artist, are organizing community engagement opportunities for artists to encourage survey participation. Both Lewis and Cullen will author the final report, which is due out later this year.

As artists themselves identify their needs collectively, notes Lewis, “The Cincinnati Artist Report is an opportunity for our arts organizations to be directly responsive to artists’ needs. This is a perfect example of power in numbers, so I urge every artist to take the survey. We need your voice.”

ArtWorks is a public arts nonprofit originating in 1996. It hires youth apprentices led by professional artists to create murals and other art projects throughout Greater Cincinnati.

The organization seeks to increase programming for professional artists after experiencing several recent, highly successful artist-driven collaborations such as BLINK and the ArtWorks + Olay Light as Air public art contest.

Sydney Fine, ArtWorks’ managing director of workforce development, loves having artists come up with their own proposals of what public art can be.

“We know artists are problem-solvers, and we’re looking for the data on what the artist community needs to have their visions come to life,” she says.


The partner in this project, Wave Pool, is a contemporary art fulfillment center located in Camp Washington that pairs the needs of communities with the artists’ sense of possibility. The nonprofit implements professional development and educational opportunities for artists.

“This project is allowing us to really understand what local artists want and need,” says Cullen from Wave Pool. “And we can do it in a way that is fun, engaging, and art-based.”
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Read more articles by Connie Springer.

Connie Springer is a publicist, writer, photographer, and watercolorist. View her work at her website and portfolio.