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University of Chicago to name building in honor of Gordon Parks

The George Lucas Family Foundation, named in honor of George Lucas, the filmmaker who made the science fiction classic “Star Wars,” and his wife, Mellody Hobson, have donated $25 million to the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools for construction of a building that will be named in honor of African American filmmaker, photographer and writer Gordon Parks. The building, scheduled to open in 2015, will b ...

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Join us for Detroit Food 2014

Don’t miss Detroit Food 2014, April 3-4 at Focus: HOPE hosted by the Detroit Food Policy Council and co-sponsored by the Detroit Food and Fitness Collaborative. This year’s theme is “Race to Good Food” and will focus on racial equity across the food system. LaDonna Redmond will give the keynote address on April 3. Redmond is a food justice activist who was inspired to fight for a fairer food system after fa ...

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‘Living for Change’ in China

This week, I received sample copies of the Chinese edition of “Living for Change.” The Index, which is the only section in English, lists the names of the individuals who had been a part of my life up to 1998 when the English edition was published by the University of Minnesota Press, e.g. my mother, father, Hegel, Whitehead, Lyman Paine, C.L.R. James, Jimmy Boggs et al. Last month, I received this email fr ...

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The woman behind Heidelberg

Tyree Guyton is world-renowned for his work on Detroit’s Heidelberg project, which transformed vacant houses on the city’s east side into found-art mosaicked sculptural pieces. But Guyton was not alone in the creation of the project. During a decade-long period spanning the creation of Heidelberg Project and its rise to international prominence, Tyree Guyton had a partner in life and work, Karen Guyton. Aft ...

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United Sound Studios, a Detroit music jewel reopens

United Sound Systems Recording Studio, the historic birthplace of hit songs from some of Detroit’s greatest musicians, has reopened its doors to the public for the first time in years, now as a museum and a production facility. From Aretha Franklin to Funkadelic, the studio has produced classic music and sounds for generations of listeners. ...

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Milton Durham’s fall doe fed a crowd of over 250 people gathered at the Northwest Activity Center, March 1 for the 9th Annual Wild Game and Soul Food Dinner. Guests feasted on everything from collard greens and pigs’ feet to barbequed raccoon and stir-fried snapping turtle, masterfully prepared by Adriene Durham’s Simply the Best Catering and Charnela Brown’s Full Circle Catering. Even the heaping plates di ...

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Fashion photographer Bruce Weber dresses up DIA

If corporate bankruptcy specialist and Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr gets his way, the Detroit Institute of Arts will no longer be owned by the city soon. The museum itself will still be filled with works inspired by the city that built it, and beginning on June 20 a new exhibition, “Detroit — Bruce Weber” will continue that tradition. ...

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Artist uses new work to link Detroiters, Syrians

Syrian-born artist, Ilham Mahfouz, recently revealed new works of painting and ceramics in an exhibit titled, “Syria: Crisis and Hope,” on display through April 12 at the Swords into Plowshares Peace Center and Gallery. Her work has been shown across the U.S. and the world, in places as far away as Egypt, Italy, New Zealand, Malaysia, Turkey and Venezuela. ...

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Trickle-down urbanism, no future at all

The concept of trickle-down urbanism is key to understanding the regional discussion of Detroit’s bankruptcy and current state of affairs. Trickle-down urbanism is a failing policy-directive, according to University of Pennsylvania’s history and sociology Professor Thomas Sugrue. Trickle-down urbanism is a take-off of President Ronald Reagan’s 1980s economic policy, which directed tax benefits and other inc ...

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