The incredible generosity of Greater Cincinnatians created what is now ArtsWave in 1927, with a challenge issued by Charles P. and Anna Sinton Taft to the public to jointly endow the Cincinnati Institute of Fine Arts (our legal name). This same spirit of philanthropy has also created one of the largest community foundations in the country, the Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF).
For more than 50 years, GCF has made grants and provided leadership in a variety of areas to help build a better community, including economic opportunity, educational success, environmental stewardship, health and wellness, and cultural vibrancy. GCF has long recognized the value of arts and culture in building a strong, thriving community. This alignment with ArtsWave’s goals for the community has led to many collaborations and partnerships between the organizations.
In recent years, GCF has included ArtsWave as part of its “Community of Practice” that convenes the region’s “backbone organizations” – those that serve distinct sectors of our civic infrastructure. Other represented organizations include Agenda 360, Vision 2015, STRIVE, LISC Greater Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky, Green Umbrella, and United Way among others. The groups regularly come together to share best practices, concerns, and opportunities in their collective impact work. The connections fostered by these meetings have led ArtsWave to discover new opportunities and new partners to leverage the benefits of the arts.
GCF’s strategic role in our community also extends to leadership in the area of cultural facilities. Along with the Carol Ann and Ralph V. Hail/US Bank Foundation, GCF co-convened the Cultural Facilities Task Force, an unprecedented collaborative effort that produced a comprehensive renovation plan for Union Terminal and Music Hall. As Issue 8 moves forward to fund renovation of Union Terminal, the Cultural Facilities Task Force remains committed to finding solutions for both buildings.
ArtsWave applauds the Greater Cincinnati Foundation for all it does to celebrate philanthropy and for its commitment to the arts as a building block of our great community.