Street art in Jackson.

Arts & Culture

Michigan: The State of Creativity

Michigan is a creative hub with welcoming communities that support artists of all kinds. With a cost of living well below what you’ll find in other coastal areas and creative jobs open throughout several different industries, Michigan is an easy choice for creatives looking to propel their future forward.

Several creative communities across the state, including Marquette, Ann Arbor, Traverse City, Saugatuck, Grand Rapids and Detroit (to name a few) offer a plethora of resources to support creatives, such as co-working and incubator spaces, networking events, local galleries, museums and much more.

On a state-wide level, the Michigan Arts and Cultural Council (MACC) provides funding to support arts and cultural organizations throughout the state including grants for artists, community development projects and educational programs. This means no matter where in Michigan you choose to call home, there is opportunity to leverage resources from MACC and its partners.

Native American culture is also celebrated throughout Michigan, with the state being home to 12 federally recognized Indian tribes. Michigan and the Great Lakes region is believed to have been occupied and travelled by indigenous populations for over 10,000 years prior to European settlement, and per the U.S. Census Bureau, Michigan is one of 10 states with the largest population of Native Americans. Ottawa, Ojibway, Chippewa, Potawatomi and others have a significant place in Michigan’s history, both as groups and individuals.

Arts & Culture by the Numbers

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Learn More About Arts & Culture in Michigan

  • Museums, Galleries & Theatre
  • Education
  • Art Festivals
  • Film and Digital Media
Museums, Galleries & Theatre

Endless Artistic Experiences

Backed by grant funding from the state-led Michigan Arts & Culture Council, artistic organizations throughout the Great Lakes State offer a diverse cultural landscape for creative expression and inspiration. Explore the art galleries in Traverse City where artists work with mediums like glassware, fabric and photography. Experience the awe of masterful performance at history centers like Manistee’s Ramsdell Theatre and the Calumet Theatre. Metro Detroit is not only home to the Detroit Institute of Arts, but also the The Henry Ford, and Motown Museum, as well as a rich portfolio of automotive and cultural heritage intuitions. Additionally, minerals and magic are the stars at the A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum and the American Museum of Magic.

Photograph exhibition.

Professionally Trained Expression

Michigan boasts several top-notch art schools that provide excellent education and training to aspiring artists. The Interlochen Center for the Arts is a renowned boarding school and artists’ retreat that offers immersive programs in various artistic disciplines, including music, dance and the visual arts. The University of Michigan provides a range of arts and culture academic programs, such as the Center for World Performance Studies and the School of Music, Theatre and Dance. The College for Creative Studies in Detroit focuses on teaching students the ins and outs of their industries. And, the Kendall College of Art and Design at Ferris State University supports students across an array of creative pursuits in the heart of Grand Rapids’ creative community.

Ballerina in blue costume performing on stage.
Art Festivals

Art Fairs with Flair

Let your imagination run wild with hundreds of art and music festivals throughout the Great Lakes State. You won’t want to miss the Flint Art Fair, which is located on the grounds of the Flint Institute of Arts, the three-day Art on the River Festival in Port Huron or the National Cherry Festival in Downtown Traverse City, which features art competitions and exhibitions alongside its famous cherry-themed festivities.

Aerial of white tents during the Ann Arbor Art Fair.
Film and Digital Media

Film Fests and More

Marquette’s Fresh Coast Film Festival is the first of its kind: a documentary film festival celebrating the outdoor lifestyle, water-rich environment and resilient spirit of the Great Lakes and Upper Midwest. East Lansing also hosts a yearly film fest, showcasing independent films from around the world that enlighten, entertain, affect, educate and expose the people of Michigan to other cultures, viewpoints and backgrounds.

Close-up of camera screen filming a group of people watching a movie.

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