Kalamazoo Insitute of Arts | WMUK

Kalamazoo Insitute of Arts

Kalamazoo's Tendaji Giving Circle Grows

Oct 8, 2019
Earlene McMichael / WMUK

Tendaji is a Swahili word which means: make things happen. But it is also the name of a giving circle made up of African American women in the Kalamazoo community.


New York-based artist Steffani Jemison will perform a new version of her work, Recitatif, at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts on Friday, Oct 4 at 5:30 and 7 pm. It's a piece she created from her study of Solresol, a 19th century utopian language expressed through musical tones, created by French philosopher and musician François Sudre. It's renewed for each performance by texts of author Toni Morrison, who wrote the short story for which the piece is named. Jemison will partner with cellist Jordan Hamilton in her Kalamazoo performances.

Earlene McMichael | WMUK

It'll be a historic moment Saturday at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts. Nearly all the museum’s permanent collection has been deinstalled for a major 12-week touring exhibit of African-American art. Kalamazoo is one of six stops in the U.S. for the Black Refractions: Highlights from The Studio Museum of Harlem installation, and the only city in the Midwest. Click on the icon below to learn more from our interview today with KIA Executive Director Belinda Tate.

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

186 artists started arriving early today to set up for the 68th annual KIA Arts Fair, a traditional summer kick-off for the city. The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts' Katie Houston shared some of the highlights with Cara Lieurance. She explains how the artists in the oldest outdoor artfair in Michigan are selected, and how the jury selects prizewinners on the first day of the fair. There are around 125 volunteers who help assist fairgoers and artists, plus a host of other activities to make the weekend special.