Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Jason Franz attended the Art Academy of Cincinnati in Eden Park and Mt. Adams, receiving his BFA degree with honors in 1988. During the first ten years of his career as an exhibiting artist Franz also worked as an exhibition designer and preparator at the Cincinnati Art Museum. He returned to academic life in 1996 to pursue an MFA degree at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning, receiving his MFA in 1998. Franz left his museum position at this time and began his teaching career. From 1997 through 2002 he taught and developed new courses for both the Art Academy of Cincinnati, and the University of Cincinnati in the fields of both art and design. In 2002 Franz received a full-time appointment to head the painting and drawing programs at Xavier University in Cincinnati. He spent two years rebuilding these programs at Xavier, solidifying his teaching philosophy, and laying the ground-work for Manifest. While at Xavier, he also served as the faculty advisor for the founding of the Society of Visual Arts (a student government organization), assisted with the planning for a new departmental photography program, and championed the integration of technology into all the classroom studios. In June of 2005 he resigned his title of Assistant Professor in order to continue on a second year of paid academic leave at the University while working on the writing of his first book, and focusing his energy towards Manifest. He has been Adjunct Assistant Professor teaching drawing in the School of Design at the University of Cincinnati since 2006. As an artist and professor he is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including an Ohio Arts Council Fellowship, a Xavier University Faculty Development Grant, and three Summerfair Individual Artist Grants. In 2009 he was awarded a Distinguished Alumnus Award by the Art Academy of Cincinnati.
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