Project Curator, Anne Delano Steinert

Over the last two years I have worked to bring my idea of a place-based public history exhibition to the streets of Over-the-Rhine by taking advantage of my existing skill set and by pushing myself into new areas beyond my familiarity. I am pleased and excited to curate the Look Here! exhibition on the streets of Over-the-Rhine, and I thank my wonderful collaborators, volunteers, project partners, and funders.

Project Inspiration

Look Here! was inspired by a number of other place-based exhibitions. These include specifically, Jay Shell’s rap lyrics project in New York City, RepoHistory’s work on Civil Disturbances (1998-1999) and Queer Spaces (1994), and The Museum in the Streets in Hastings-On-Hudson, New York. Born and raised in Cincinnati, I lived in and around New York City for 13 years, When I returned to Cincinnati in 2008 I was struck by the lack of tools for historical place-making available to the citizens of Cincinnati. Sure, there is plenty of information about Cincinnati’s history available if you take the initiative to seek it out, but for the average citizen there wasn’t much evidence of what came before this moment.

I strongly believe that all of us, regardless of age, class, or training have the ability to read the built environment as a way to enrich our understanding of the past. As a result, I have chosen to post only historic photographs without than informational text. This exhibit relies on you to read the photographs, ask questions and make meaning for yourself. It is my hope that the questions you generate from exploring these photographs will lead you to additional exploration and research into the rich history of our Queen City.

I believe the rapid change happening in Over-the-Rhine makes it an ideal location for the Look Here! exhibit. As buildings are rehabilitated and new users join long-established residents, it is important to root the present in an understanding of the past. As the neighborhood evolves, this exhibition will allow Cincinnatians to make connections between the past and the present.

Project Goals

Look Here! seeks to:
  • To engage a wide range of users through simple and accessible signage by eliminating technological barriers for participation (no fancy cell phone or wi-fi service required).
  • To create an active experience in which viewers construct and share their understandings of the past and present.
  • To direct people through the neighborhood into areas which may be unfamiliar or outside of their comfort zone (to move OTR newcomers off of the Vine Street corridor and into other, equally compelling parts of the neighborhood).
  • To encourage historic preservation through a recognition of the structures and streetscapes that have been lost in Over-the-Rhine.
  • To add to the existing cultural vibrancy of Over-the-Rhine by highlighting the historical value of the neighborhood.

More About Anne Delano Steinert

I am currently a doctoral student at the University of Cincinnati studying urban and public history. I also hold a Master’s degree in American and Public History from the University of Cincinnati (2015), a Master’s degree in Historic Preservation from Columbia University (1994) and a Bachelor’s degree in Historic Preservation from Goucher College (1992). I have worked in historic preservation, public history, and education for over 20 years and I am also mom to my wonderful four year-old son, Seneca. Feel free to contact me at with any questions you have about the project. Be sure to see our How To page for ideas about how to create a Look Here!-inspired installation in your neighborhood.

Partners

Look Here! has been lucky to have wonderful projects for this project.

They are:

Look Here! On the streets of Cincinnati’s historic Over-the-Rhine - November 2015-March 2016
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