Grand Rapids, ArtPrize and Whiteness

Grand Rapids, ArtPrize and Whiteness
by Jeff Smith (GRIID)
Recently, I was driving back into Michigan on highway 94 and saw a billboard just after re-entering the state that read, Cool City – Hot Art. The billboard was created by Experience GR and also included the words food, beer and music.

This billboard, in many ways, is reflective of the economic, political and cultural climate that exists in Grand Rapids. If we were to more honestly depict in words what the reality is for Grand Rapids, this is what the billboard would actually look like. https://griid.org/2017/09/28/grand-rapids-artprize-and-whiteness/#like-26240

Grand Rapids Institute for Information Democracy

Recently, I was driving back into Michigan on highway 94 and saw a billboard just after re-entering the state that read, Cool City – Hot Art. The billboard was created by Experience GR and also included the words food, beer and music.

This billboard, in many ways, is reflective of the economic, political and cultural climate that exists in Grand Rapids. If we were to more honestly depict in words what the reality is for Grand Rapids, this is what the billboard would actually look like.

Grand Rapids is such an overtly White City. The whiteness permeates everything about the city, from the hyper-religious reality to the heavy handed entrepreneur/free market/philanthropy crap that is constantly shoved down our throats. This is also the case with the litany of non-profits that exist, with their emphasis on practicing white savior politics. Then there is the cultural climate in Grand Rapids, where every…

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