Best Of 2019

Best Cincinnati Sesquicentennial: Art Academy of Cincinnati

What do the names Frank Duveneck, Julian Stanczak, Jim Dine, Charley and Edie Harper, Paul Chidlaw, Petah Coyne, John Ruthven, Maria Longworth Nichols Storer, Tom Wesselmann and Elizabeth Nourse have in common? They are all names of artists who have studied, taught or guest lectured at the Art Academy of Cincinnati in its 150 years as a standout design college. Started in 1869 as the independent, downtown-based McMicken School of Design, it later became part of the new University of Cincinnati in 1871, changing its name to the Art Academy of Cincinnati in 1887 after leaving UC to partner with the new Cincinnati Art Museum and have its own building on that institution’s idyllic Eden Park campus. It separated from the museum in 2005 to move to former commercial buildings at 1212 Jackson St. in what was then still-gritty, not-yet-chic Over-the-Rhine and is now an anchor in that burgeoning urban neighborhood, an accredited nonprofit independent institution with some 200 undergraduates and big plans for growth. With a new book, Art Academy 150: Make Art. Make a Difference, and an exhibit at the Cincinnati Art Museum, Art Academy of Cincinnati at 150: A Celebration in Drawing and Prints, chronicling the history of the academy, many more locals and beyond will know the prestigious and inventive students and work that sprung from the hotbed of talent, including the development of Rookwood Pottery, the creation of the comic strip and iconic names in Modernist wildlife art (the Harpers), Pop art (Wesselmann) and Realism (Nourse). Art Academy of Cincinnati, 1212 Jackson St., Over-the-Rhine, artacademy.edu.