OUT IN THE OPEN: Activism, Housing and Homelessness in Cincinnati's Urban Core
as part of CS13
A collaborative exhibition between CS13 and the Greater Cincinnati Coalition for the Homeless (GCCH), the show was culled from the GCCH's archive of documentary materials from the past twenty years in homeless activism, including the work of the late Cincinnati activist and photojournalist Jimmy Heath.
Published twice a month by the GCCH, Streetvibes is an activist newspaper which seeks to advocate justice and foster community with vendors circulating 8,000 copies each month. Heath's photographs, many of which were printed in Streetvibes, mirrored his involvement and interest in the Over-the-Rhine community, documenting homeless life, grassroots activism, and the urban community.
By combining Jimmy Heath's photographs with first-hand accounts from individuals who have been active in the neighborhood over the past several decades, "Out In The Open" sought to provide a forum for personal concerns and narratives regarding housing in Over-the-Rhine. Although the exhibition is specifically focused on issues of homelessness, the show will also engage a much broader dialogue regarding the history of the neighborhood at large. To this end, the exhibition utilized the GCCH's archive as a medium through which to illustrate and evoke narratives, concerns, and histories contributed by a variety of community members who were invited to participate in the curation of the exhibit. These individuals included the formerly and currently homeless, those working in community services, those with a history of homeless related activism, and long-term residents of the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood.
The project blended audio recordings with a print archive, as well as a selection of posters, marching signs and PSA's and more personal, domestic items donated by vendors, social workers and neighborhood residents.