Activist community

The next phase of Detroit’s community arts nonprofit Garage Cultural

The new Garage Cultural building. Photo: Annalize Frank/Axios

Garage Cultural, a nonprofit for community arts, is using a recently awarded grant as a “springboard” to build its new campus.

Driving the news: The The Kresge Foundation donated Garage Cultural $150,000 this summer to fund an outdoor stage, workshop and green space around the nonprofit’s new southwest building.

What is happening: The space is at a “pivotal stage,” garage manager Amelia Duran told Axios.

  • It expects to invest about $500,000 over the next two years in infrastructure upgrades that will increase programming capacity, she says.

The big picture: Duran’s father, Ismael “Bandolero” Duran, was a Latin American folk musician and immigrant who founded Garage Cultural in 2011 for artists and activists.

  • Ismael, who died in October, aimed to give young people the opportunity to immerse themselves in the arts and music and to ensure that cultural traditions were not lost.
  • “He was really the heart and soul of Garage,” Amelia says.

Rollback: The nonprofit had been trying to buy the building it had been in for a decade, but the deal fell through, according to Amelia.

  • They then purchased Garage’s current headquarters and 12 vacant lots at the end of October.

And after: Garage Culturel is working on southwestern partya free festival of music and art for young creators, on August 27 at the Théâtre du Sénat.


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