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Monday, October 19, 2009

Connecting Communities: Up and Running!

If you haven't yet ventured out to see our latest exhibit, Connecting Communities, I suggest you do so!

The exhibit deals with immigration in metro Detroit, by looking at the lives of nine local immigrants. We pair their stories with government-compiled statistical data in an effort to breakdown some misconceptions and negative stereotypes associated with immigrants.

YOU can also have your say in the debate! Visit our Social Media "Dashboard" to find out how your voice can be heard!

If you're camera-shy and/or don't use Social Media you can always comment RIGHT HERE! Think about answering these questions:

1. Do you know who, in your family, immigrated to the United States? When did they come here? Or, are you Native American Indian?
2. Do you think new immigrants should completely shed their native culture and traditions when they come to America? Why or why not?
3. Respond to this statement: America is a nation founded by immigrants and populated by immigrants and their descendents.
4. Why do you think immigration is such a hot-button issue these days?
5. How would you feel if you had to emigrate? What would you miss the most about America? What would you want to take with you?

Your contribution helps shape the exhibit and may appear in the gallery! So visit us often to hear what people have to say and share your thoughts too!

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Monday, June 8, 2009

Connecting Communities: an intro

One of the exhibits the curatorial team is currently working on is called, Connecting Communities. It uses the voices of immigrants from four geographical regions (South Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Arab world), who came to three Detroit neighborhoods (Dearborn, Southwest Detroit, and Hamtramck). We used local university students to interview our 10 immigrants, and we've been collecting census data, artifacts and a myriad of other things to help illustrate the connections between immigrants and citizens born in the U.S.

Last Thursday (June 4th) the curatorial team was quite excited because it was field trip day! We are into the design stages of the exhibit and need photographs of our participants to put their faces with their stories. We visited a restaurant in Southwest Detroit, a social service office in Hamtramck, and a driving school/law office also in Hamtramck. We are hoping to create a welcoming environment for visitors to the exhibit so we also did some exploring around these areas to help us with this. We are very thankful to our participants for taking time to meet with us, and we are very much looking forward to meeting with the remaining participants.
With summer here it's a great time to go out and explore the treasures of your neighborhood and your surrounding communities. You never know what/who you may find (I ran into an uncle I don't see that often!).

Connecting Communities is set to open this October so watch this blog for further developments!

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