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Olayami Dabls: 2022 Kresge Eminent Artist monograph, “The Culture Keeper”


A monograph on the life and work of Olayami Dabls, a visual storyteller, placemaker, muralist and educator. Dabls has been the subject of widespread acclaim for his transformation of two Detroit city blocks that he once labeled “a complete dumping ground” into a mesmerizing and unapologetically African-centered cultural attraction. He is the founder and curator of the MBAD African Bead Museum—a massive campus housing a sculpture garden with 18 outdoor installations, the African Bead Gallery, the N’Kisi House and the 150-ft. African Language Wall. Dabls is the 14th artist to receive the honor in recognition of professional achievements in an art form, contributions to the cultural community and dedication to Detroit and its residents. The monograph was prepared and published by the Kresge Foundation (2022).

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