project leader
Elizabeth H
1556 Chase Ave
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the project

WordPlay Cincy, the Northside Cincinnati-based non-profit dedicated to the creation of spaces for young people to fulfill their potential by discovering, honoring and sharing their voices, has partnered with ArtWorks Cincinnati to create a mural honoring inspirational literary-activist authors and poets as well as some text from WordPlay students to adorn WordPlay’s new home at 1556 Chase Avenue in Northside, Cincinnati. 

The mural is designed by long-time WordPlay and ArtWorks teaching artist Brandon Hawkins (of Soul Palette,, who along with assistant teaching artist Anissa Pulcheon will direct and mentor the 9 Youth Apprentices to paint the 2-D portion of the project. For the second phase of the mural, WordPlay and local collaborators and artists will design and install accessible, tactile elements from the ground to approximately 5’ high for the blind and visually impaired to interact with the subject matter expressed in the 2-D painting throughout. Those elements will include Braille plates with information about the individuals and student writing depicted in the mural, 3-D ceramic pieces and other unique, inclusive and interactive installments. The mural is intended to serve as a both a statement of purpose as well as an inspiration, marking WordPlay’s new home as a community safe place for writing, poetry, art, gathering and the telling of one’s own story.

Our thanks to ArtWorks, who is generously funding roughly half the cost of the 2-D portion of the mural.

the steps

Based on the gridding system that the artists will use to translate the design from paper to the wall, we have divided the mural design into 200 3’x3’ boxes that will be revealed as we raised money for them. To reach the campaign goal, each 3’x3’ box will be revealed at $75 intervals (the ioby image will be updated weekly). In keeping with the box theme, we created some giving levels (in the right hand column ->). 

Here is the project timeline:

Late June 2021 – The Youth Apprentices began working directly with Brandon Hawkins and Anissa Pulcheon prepping the building's facade and gridding out the building to adapt the initial mural design to the building’s exterior.

July/August 2021 – The youth artists will work both collectively and individually to transform the initial inspiration into permanent mural on the public facing wall of the building.

Late August 2021 - Completion of the mural!

October 2021 (Tentative) – Upon completion of the mural, WordPlay and ArtWorks will host a public mural dedication.

why we're doing it

In short, to inspire future generations of young creatives to tell their stories with the same courage as those that have paved the way. WordPlay has always worked to provide safe spaces for children, teens and young adults to tell their stories and find their own power through the written word. We want our new building to further manifest our mission in a bold and deliberate way inspiring not just our students, but our community as well.


200 3x3 Mural Sections at $75 a section = $15,000

All donations raised through this campaign will go toward our share of the mural prep, mural paint, design costs as well as the payment of artists and youth apprentices.

ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) N/A
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%)
(Donation processing fee does not apply to match funding.)
Donation processing fees apply to donations only. 100% of match funding goes to projects. Please note, fees are estimated here and final numbers may change based on the final amount raised and amount of match funding applied to this campaign.  


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This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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