Detroit artists win big

Jul 4, 2011

Twelve fellowships have been awarded to Detroit area visual artists. Each Kresge Artist Fellowship is worth $25,000 and has a “no strings attached” policy. 

Visual artist Liz Cohen was one of the winners.

“Oh I mean it’s an honor, it’s a great organization and a great grant and an opportunity to become closer to a lot of the other artists in the city.”

Cohen is beginning a long-term art project and will use the money to help with her research.

George Jacobsen is with the Kresge Foundation.  He says one of the ideas behind the fellowships is to get the public excited about art. Jacobsen says the artists are a great resource to the city of Detroit.  

“They are an asset that attracts both dollars and people to come back into the city and experience nightlife and culture.”

Jacobsen also hopes the awards will help public officials realize the import role artists can play in a community.

Sebastian Kresge started the foundation in 1924. He had his own line of five-and-dime stores which were later known as K-mart stores.  Kresge’s original mission was to promote human progress. These days the organization gives away grants in six areas of interest including the environment, the arts, and education.

Last year the organization gave away $134 million dollars.