On Tuesday, a 39-year-old curator and artist, Ingrid LaFleur, threw her hat into the ring for this year’s mayoral race in Detroit, a city where municipal finances and art have been uncomfortable bedfellows in recent years. During the city’s federal bankruptcy proceedings in 2013 and 2014, creditors pushed for the sale of valuable pieces from the collection of the Detroit Institute of Arts.

Ms. LaFleur, a Detroit native, helped establish an artist’s residency program at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh and founded an Afro-futurist art and film program, Afrotopia, in Detroit.

Ingrid LaFleur, Detroit Mayoral Race, African American Politics, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMN

Ingrid LaFleur, Detroit Mayoral Race, African American Politics, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMN

Ingrid LaFleur, Detroit Mayoral Race, African American Politics, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMN

Ingrid LaFleur, Detroit Mayoral Race, African American Politics, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMN



Detroit is the most populous city in the U.S. state of Michigan, the fourth-largest city in the Midwest and the largest city on the United States–Canada border. It is the seat of Wayne County, the most populous county in the state.

The municipality of Detroit had a 2015 estimated population of 677,116, making it the 21st-most populous city in the United States. The metropolitan area, known as Metro Detroit, is home to 4.3 million people and lies at the heart of the Great Lakes Megalopolis area, with around 60 million people. Roughly one-half of Michigan’s population lives in Metro Detroit alone. The Detroit–Windsor area, a commercial link straddling the Canada–U.S. border, has a total population of about 5.7 million.

Detroit is a major port on the Detroit River, a strait that connects the Great Lakes system to the Saint Lawrence Seaway. The Detroit Metropolitan Airport is among the most important hubs in the United States. The City of Detroit anchors the second-largest economic region in the Midwest, behind Chicago, and the thirteenth-largest in the United States. Detroit and its neighboring Canadian city Windsor are connected through a tunnel and various bridges, with the Ambassador Bridge being the busiest international crossing in North America.

Detroit was founded on July 24, 1701 by the French explorer and adventurer Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac and a party of settlers. During the 19th century, it became an important industrial hub at the center of the Great Lakes region. With expansion of the American automobile industry in the early 20th century, the Detroit area emerged as a significant metropolitan region within the United States. The city became the fourth-largest in the country for a period. In the 1950s and 1960s, suburban expansion continued with construction of a regional freeway system. A great portion of Detroit’s public transport was abandoned in favour of becoming an automotive city in the post-war period, which has gradually reversed since the 1970s. (Wikipedia).


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KOLUMN Magazine celebrates the lives of People of Color by giving our world texture.