creative research gallery and drawing center
a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization



Centered in two urban Cincinnati neighborhoods while reaching a global base of participants, Manifest exists at an intense crossroads of diversity and culture where it witnesses and acknowledges the need to support individuals and groups who otherwise have little or no access to or understanding of the importance of visual arts and related study and practice. Our formation was, in part, a reaction to findings that the arts play a catalytic role in the revitalization process of depressed communities and a sustaining role in healthy ones, a fact that continues to hold true within our home bases of Clifton (45223) and East Walnut Hills (45206) today. Manifest is committed to expanding and evolving programming that incorporates and inspires individuals across race, gender, age, religion, and identity, inviting them to serve, experience, and learn from artists from around the world, their peers, and professional mentors, in an open, inclusive, and safe environment.

Manifest's Board of Directors
July 16, 2020



Manifest (operating as Manifest Gallery + Manifest Drawing Center) was built on taking a stand for principles of measured quality, experiential opportunity, philosophical openness, a respect for learned skill and craftsmanship, and for a belief that excellence can arise from people of any age, race, gender, background, lifestyle, or geographic origin. Our nonprofit organization was founded in 2004 by students and teachers who saw a lack of these things in their world and sought to bring them about, creating a space—a platform—for their manifestation. It was these principles that attracted and gained the involvement of artists from around the world—so many people very different from ourselves.

While this effort was admittedly supported by a privileged relationship to the visual arts and academic art world, even today it gives us a humble microscopic view of the larger position of our fellow citizens of the world. If you want something good in the world, you have to take action to bring it about. How this is done, the craftsmanship and philosophy, the empathy and truth to vision, the work, it all really matters. The How, What, and Why are everything. We must get these right together. We are seeing this work being done, and it is dangerous, powerful, and inspiring.

Like a work of art this country, this global civilization, must be made such that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Together we are so much more than what we are as individuals. This does not mean we must believe the same beliefs, nor think the same thoughts, or value the same experiences. But we do need to recognize our place as parts of the larger whole, and to embrace it in dynamic respectful balance, celebrating what it means to be here now, recognizing the frailty of a monumental system so much larger and more precious than ourselves.

Across nearly two decades Manifest’s exhibits and publications have presented to the public the works of nearly 4,000 artists from all 50 U.S. states and 43 different countries. Despite the fact that we do not ask for headshots, gender, or ethnicity details when considering submissions of artwork, nor when exhibiting or publishing the final selections, we know that many of the artists we’ve been blessed with knowing and working with have been very different from ourselves, and this is based on more than just their vast global origins. The fact that so much of the world has been represented by the artists who chose to cross paths here, at Manifest in Cincinnati, Ohio, (in our gallery, books, and studio) has meant all the difference in how we have viewed and valued our place in the world. Without them, without so many diverse creative energy sources, Manifest would not be what it is today. It is they who have made Manifest the Neighborhood Gallery for the World.

Jason Franz, Executive Director
June 2022


 Josephine S. Russell
Charitable Trust

Manifest is supported by sustainability funding from the Ohio Arts Council, and through the generous direct contributions of individual supporters and private foundations who care deeply about Manifest's mission for the visual arts.

gallery hours:

tues-fri 12-7pm, sat noon-5pm
closed on sun-mon

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gallery map
2727 woodburn avenue
cincinnati, ohio 45206

drawing center map (m1)
3464 Central Parkway
cincinnati, ohio 45223



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