On a walk through downtown Kalamazoo, one would be hard pressed to fail to take notice of both the number and variety of works of public art which adorn building facades, walkways, parks, and even alleys. After completion of a photo gallery dedicated to public sculpture in Kalamazoo, the idea of creating a similar gallery of public murals came up and immediately appealed to me. One of the tasks that I have enjoyed the most as the local history room intern has been the exploration and documentation of the landscape of Kalamazoo through photography.
Once begun, the project began to swell beyond my initial impressions of the number of public murals to be found in Kalamazoo. Some murals have been present for decades and have become so well integrated into the cityscape that they have become easy to overlook. New murals are arriving annually, being painted by local artists such as Conrad Kaufman, who has made a name for himself in the region due to the sheer number of murals he has created for both public and private audiences.
While some of Kalamazoo's murals are easily located, others are more well hidden. Throughout the process of locating and documenting these works of art, I have often been surprised at what can be discovered through a slight variation of a routine route through town. After an examination of the murals in the photo gallery, it is my hope that you will seek them out on your own if should you happen find yourself nearby. If you are aware of any murals that are readily accessible to the public and have not yet been included in the gallery, please let me know in order to help make the list as complete as possible.