“Never underestimate the power of a small group of committed people to change the world. In fact, it is the only thing that ever has!”
-Margaret Mead

CCAC began with a dream: Create an inspiring, uplifting place where people from all walks of life will connect through the shared experience of art.

In 2002, as a result of Cincinnati Public Schools’ new Master Plan, the Clifton community faced an uncomfortable fact: The century-old Clifton School building, a beloved neighborhood landmark, would soon stand vacant. From a series of engagement meetings – and the unbridled imaginations of a few visionary minds – the idea to re-imagine the historic building as a thriving cultural arts center emerged. Soon, a small core of believers were slowly but enthusiastically inspiring a growing group of neighbors, volunteers, activists and community leaders – from Clifton, Uptown and across Cincinnati – to all join forces and make this crazy dream a reality.

The result was the Clifton Cultural Arts Center, an emergent non-profit arts organization formed in 2004 to breath new life into the Clifton School building and campus. Today, after more than a decade of consistent growth and support – including countless volunteer hours and millions in donations and investment – CCAC is an essential thread in the fabric of Cincinnati and our Uptown communities, continually expanding our role as a collaborative, inclusive, multi-venue arts center for children, families, adults and seniors, as well as established and emerging artists, educators and art programmers.

Our mission: Build a community-created place where …

  • People of all ages, races, culture and socioeconomic status connect with one another through creation, interpretation and appreciation of art.
  • Children develop creativity, collaboration, critical thinking and other 21st century skills by engaging in the arts.
  • Artist entrepreneurs establish themselves as teachers; emerging artists develop their talent and build their profession; and small nonprofit arts organizations find a unique home among like-minded people.

In late 2018, upon Cincinnati Public Schools’ decision to re-occupy the historic Clifton School building, CCAC was compelled to relocate and currently occupies its Administrative Offices at 2728 Short Vine Street while offering classes, exhibitions and events at several community locations. CCAC’s board, staff and volunteers are deeply engaged in the process to locate a new permanent home to carry our mission and vision into the future. Click here to learn more about our ongoing relocation efforts and sign up for updates.

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