Alumni kudos!

Kudos to…   Emily Kutil (MSP12) has been granted funding for a great project to explore the history of Detroit.  In her own words, “An idea that I submitted for the Knight Arts Challenge, Black Bottom Street View, is getting funded.  The Burton Historical Collection at the Detroit Public Library has a collection of photos of every house in a huge area of Black Bottom, one of Detroit’s most historic black neighborhoods, taken in 1949-1950 – right before the neighborhood was demolished by the city.  For the past couple of years, I’ve been working on arranging the photos by street address so that you can see the neighborhood as a whole.  And I’ve been making a big drawing that stitches the photos together into a continuous streetscape.  I want to make a website that maps the photos, so folks can explore the neighborhood digitally and contribute histories, memories and photos of their own.  And I want to make a book of commissioned writing by Detroiters, illustrated by the drawing.  The funding will pay for the website, the book, and the research necessary to make the website into a searchable database where families can look up homes by family name and address.  I hope that Black Bottom Street View can help to make its history more visible for all of us – and that a better understanding of this history will teach us something about the current forms of displacement that are shaping Detroit today.  The Knight Arts grant is a matching grant, so I need to raise $15,000 in the next year to make this project happen.  I’ll be starting a fundraising campaign later this year.  For now, you can contact or visit for updates.  #knightarts”