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


    APPLICATION FORM [link] ––– application process closed for 2018/19.

Manifest Artist Residency Award 2018/19

Deadline for Application:  April 9, 2018

Notification of Selection:   On or around May 1, 2018 (We will aim to notify by May 7th)

Residency commences:   By July 1, 2018 (for a one year period)

Artists are invited to submit complete applications to the Manifest Artist Residency program (MAR) located in the vibrant historic urban neighborhood of East Walnut Hills in Cincinnati, Ohio near the Ohio River, Eden Park, the Cincinnati Art Museum, numerous Universities, and within three miles of downtown Cincinnati and 'Over the Rhine'. (Manifest and the Residency Studios are headquartered here.)

Applications will be reviewed on a competitive basis. One or two artists will be selected as the recipient(s) of the MAR award which consists of the following: 

  • Free 24/7 use of a private studio consisting of (for one artist) approximately five hundred square feet of studio and display space (two north-lit rooms and a hallway) for a period of one year (including nominal utilities). In the event that two separate applicants are each awarded the residency,* each will receive one room, with some shared common space including hallway, storage, and restroom.

  • Free Drawing League Membership at Manifest Drawing Center which provides access to approximately 400 hours of life drawing sessions through weekly Open Figure and semi-regular Drawing Marathon offerings.

  • The artist will be given consideration for teaching courses in our studio program, for pay, during the course of the residency. This will be contingent upon suitability and qualifications, as well as course enrollment, and will be determined by the Coordinator of the Drawing Center program.

  • Regular public exposure of artwork in-progress and working studio during Manifest exhibit receptions to well over 2000 members of the public.

  • The opportunity to submit to any and all of Manifest’s calls for entry for which the artist is eligible, with the entry fees waived for all submissions. Works submitted by the Resident Artist will still be juried through the blind jury process used for all Manifest projects.
  • The participation in a MAR Showcase exhibit in the gallery near the conclusion of the Residency. This is contingent upon approval by the Director and the availability of suitable work. The purpose of the exhibition is to be Manifest's presentation of works made in the Residency space and Manifest programs.
  • If a show is presented, the Resident Artist's exhibited work will be featured in a chapter of that season's Manifest Exhibition Annual publication.
  • The  presentation of an artist talk to the public at or near the conclusion of the Residency.


* In 2012/13 one artist was awarded the Residency. Since then every year two separate applicants received the award. Applicants have the option to indicate on the application form whether or not they wish to be considered for an exclusive Residency award, or are open to the dual award. It is our belief, based on experience, that having two residents activates the experience and the overall value of the program far more than does having just one resident artist. So it is our recommendation that applicants remain open to having a neighbor colleague. In cases where there are two Residents, each will be provided their own private separate studio, but will share hallway access, basic storage access, and restroom.


The program is open for application by any serious emerging or established artist, including recent graduates from college art programs. It will benefit Manifest's community by providing public exposure to the often unseen working space and practices of artists, serving to eliminate some boundaries to contemporary artmaking which currently may divide the everyday public from the fine visual arts.

International (non-U.S. resident) artists will be responsible for securing their own travel authorization, Visa documents, etc. Manifest cannot secure such authorization, but can provide basic documentation explaining the nature of the residency to any authorities who require it.

The ideal candidate for the award of the program may be working in any media or genre, but would also make reasonable use of the available life-drawing sessions and/or darkroom facility even if this is ancillary activity to their primary work. Suitability for teaching will be considered, but will not be a primary factor in the selection process, and a teaching appointment is not guaranteed.

The residency studio is adjacent to Manifest Gallery, sharing a common hallway in the same building. The studio consists of two north-lit rooms on the first floor and a semi-private hallway usable for display. The residency space totals approximately 500 square feet.

The resident artist(s) will be selected by a committee comprised of internal staff, board members, and academic/professional advisors. Primary criteria for selection will include:

  • Quality and consistency of sample work.

  • Motivation and potential for the creation of excellent new work during residency.

  • The degree to which the individual will benefit from the program and reciprocate with involvement and new positive energy.

  • The ability of the artist to take full advantage of the opportunity and utilize the program resources to maximize its benefits.


Goals for the Manifest Artist Residency Program include:

  • Provide an ideal space for the creation of new work.

  • Greatly increase the likelihood of future success for the resident artist.

  • Offer the opportunity to develop drawing or other art-making skills relative to the consistent availability of life drawing models and a darkroom facility, or to explore how life-drawing can relate to other art-making activities. (Applicants are NOT required to be figurative artists nor photographers.)

  • Create a supportive environment for development as a teaching artist.

  • Place the artist in a vital and growing arts community in Cincinnati, with a location ideal for meeting with and learning from other artists and arts organizations in the city.

  • Expand how Manifest's programming impacts individual artists, our community, and artmaking in society.

  • Establish a broad view into contemporary art by providing the public with insights into both art production (exhibits) and processes (studio) under one roof, as well as participating in Manifest's own exhibition processes.

Basic conditions for the program:*

The Artist in Residence must remain in good standing, fully using the space and resources provided, and participating in the public and programming components of the Award in order to remain in the program for the full duration. Presently the MAR is strictly a one-year program, without the option for shorter durations. Accepting the award constitutes a commitment to the full year. Manifest believes that a full-year immersion in the process, culture, and energy of the MAR is required in order for the program to make its intended positive impact on the artistic career path of each resident artist.

The public component includes opening the studio and hosting public guests during Manifest's nine exhibit receptions and nine preview events across the year, as well as the possible instruction of courses (for pay), possible (and optional) moderation of Open Life Drawing Sessions or darkroom lab times, artist talks, and documentary activities.

Manifest reserves the right to document the studio and works made during the residency, and to use images in program and organizational promotional material, including websites and publications.

The Residency space is not a dwelling, and includes no kitchen or bathing facilities. The artist must secure his or her own living arrangements. Manifest will provide advice and as much informational assistance as possible in placing the artist in close proximity to the studio. (East Walnut Hills has many excellent options for apartments, some in historic homes, within walking distance to Manifest.)

The Residency space is provided as-is, unfurnished and unequipped. The artist may need to provide their own furniture or equipment needed to utilize the space.

At the conclusion of the residency, the artist must return the space to the same condition in which it was awarded to them (or better).

The MAR program currently involves no cash award or payment to the artist, other than for the potential pay for courses taught which would be on a separate contractual basis. The value of the award is estimated at approximately $10,000 per artist.

Manifest will not conduct the sale of the artist's work unless it is included in a Manifest exhibit, or by separate agreement. The artist may sell their own work (and only their work), on their own terms, to interested patrons, but must not utilize the MAR space as a selling venue, booth, or other quasi-commercial facility. Any uncertainty about this should be discussed with Manifest's Director.

To ensure the artist takes full advantage of the program, and maximizes the benefits it offers, as well as provides reciprocatal involvement, the Manifest Residency space should be the sole primary creative studio of the artist during the residency period.

Periodic reviews will be conducted to ensure the integrity of the program. This may include routine monthly studio visits and discussions with Manifest's Executive Director, board members, or staff.

* Submission of application indicates agreement to the terms spelled out in this prospectus. A more detailed formal agreement, further clarifying the terms, will be provided upon establishment of the award recipient.

Questions can be emailed to Jason Franz at:

In General:

Well over 250 artists exhibit, and 4000 or more patrons visit the gallery each year. Thousands of artists submit works to thematic projects and our three major publications produced at the gallery. Our exhibits are routinely reviewed in local, and sometimes national news and art publications (including Sculpture Magazine, Drawing Magazine, and Art Papers among others). Our exhibition, publication, and residency programs have created a worldwide network of Manifest 'alum' who often stay in touch, collaborate, and support each other over time. Our Drawing Center attracts and supports a healthy community of active creative participants, including regional professors, students, professional artists, and aspiring novices. We believe all of this makes involvement at Manifest, and in the MAR program, extremely valuable.

Manifest will accept applications for the MAR award on an ongoing basis, reviewing them starting in early April for the upcoming one-year term. Notifications will be made on or around May 1st, with the start date for the residency being July 1st of each year.

The organization is a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit and as such operates on a very lean budget with the support of hard won (and dwindling) grants, as well as thoughtful individual donations, and in-kind professional and volunteer services. As such, all submissions and applications to projects include modest entry/submission fees. These are either at or below the national norm for such fees, and we work very hard to maximize all our resources to make the benefits of submission to and participation in our exhibits more valuable than most gallery experiences. With a mission to stand for quality in the visual arts, we set our own bar high, and generally exceed the expectations of participating artists and our patrons.

Learn about the current and past MAR artists here.

Eligibility: Any adult visual artist can submit an application. Artists should bear in mind the criteria listed above when submitting.

Media/Genre: Open to artists working in any traditional and non-traditional genre and media. Manifest sets out to survey, exhibit, and document excellent quality amongst all types of visual art. Our record of showing a broad mix speaks for itself. This philosophy carries over into the MAR program.

Submission Fee: Each application must be accompanied by a $50 non-refundable submission fee. Fee must be paid by U.S. check or U.S. or International money order made payable to MANIFEST, or by credit card via PayPal. (If paying by PayPal PLEASE use the paypal link provided on the page that follows the submission of the online application form.)

How many works should I submit?
For applications we request 12 images of sample work be sent for consideration.

Images and Info: In an effort to conserve resources Manifest accepts only digital images and documents for consideration. See specifications below. The gallery will retain the submitted images of the successful applicants and reserves the right to use the images in publications and gallery publicity. Mailed proposal materials will not be returned. Please do not send links to Google Drive documents. Web links should only be used for files too large for email (such as video files). Jpegs should be sent as email attachments only.

Digital Format: Digital images and PDF resume should be emailed. Video works may be submitted on CD or DVD or by e-mail (send to:, or by The email and online submission process is HIGHLY PREFERRED because it makes our process more efficient and saves postage and materials for the artists.

To send via email: (send to: The email should include the artist's full name as subject along with 'MAR application' The images must meet the following specifications:

File names (for images AND other documents) = artist's last name (underscore) first name, followed by the image number as noted on the application form (i.e.Jones_Mike_1.jpg).

Detail, installation, or alternate view images must include the word 'detail' in the filename (i.e. Jones_Mike_1detail_1.jpg).

Detail info should NOT be included on the application form. The image files should be in HIGH QUALITY JPEG format, images should be no smaller than 1000 pixels in width and 72dpi.

Images must be oriented properly (i.e. top of image is top of artwork) and should not include text info or borders that are not part of the actual work.

Manifest requests that all video or interactive submissions, or video details illustrating an entry, be in the form of a link to a viewable online copy of each work. The work should be shown online in its full length

Note that a jpeg still image should still be submitted to represent the work in addition to the video material, and this file name should include the term 'video'. Please email us if you have any uncertainty about this (

Video links should be provided on the application form for each work in the NOTES or LINKS section, and should link directly to online or downloadable content that does NOT require a login, password or membership to view. These may be in the form of Youtube, Vimeo, Dropbox, or other similar links. Effort should be made to eliminate confusion or extraneous information that may interfere with the jury's viewing of the work. Any extraneous information, or material not considered to be 'the work' will inevitably detract from the jury score for that work.

Links to entries must remain valid and active through the notification of jury results

Optionally, artists may package, zip, and transfer the entire set of images using a free online transfer service such as or similar. Still, all emails regarding the submission need to reference the artists' name and 'MAR application' in the subject line.


Entry Checklist: (for your reference)

Completed application form (online submission is required)

Fee paid by check or credit card via PayPal (payable to Manifest)

Digital images formatted as directed
Artist's resume in PDF format (emailed)


If sending through the USPS, mail materials to:
(the online/email submission process is preferred)

Manifest Creative Research Gallery and Drawing Center
MAR Application
P.O. Box 6218
Cincinnati, OH 45206

e-mail with questions


(PLEASE feel free to print, share, or forward this information.)



Manifest's 15th season is funded in part by a grant from the Robert H. Reakirt Foundation, PNC Bank, Trustee. This season's programming is also supported by an impact grant from ArtsWave, by a sustainability grant from the Ohio Arts Council, and through the generous contributions of individual supporters who care deeply about the visual arts.

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(or by special appointment)

closed Sun and Mon

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cincinnati, ohio 45206

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