January 2011: I am preparing for my first real visit to Detroit, the city of my birth. I am a Californian, where I have been since age one when my parents packed me into a car to seek fame and fortune in LA. It is strange to be defined by something unknown but when asked if I am a "native" Californian, I answer, "No, I was born in Detroit." It seems time to investigate what that means. So I have come "home" on my birthday to photograph Detroit.
This blog is part of an accompanying journal about the project.
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
With a strong background in contemporary art, I absolutely applaud yet another terrific sign of Detroit's ascension again: the opening of the Kunsthalle Detroit http://www.kunsthalle-detroit.org/#!
In a neighborhood west of Wayne State, Kunsthalle Detroit is starting off with a spectacular exhibition of some of the more prominent video artists. Not all from Detroit yet the show is making a statement for this city where so many artists are flocking, listening no doubt to Patti Smith (see Times blog below), as well as their own always avant-garde instincts. Detroit's combination of an easier cost of living for always financially-strapped artists while being a place where the history, amazing and tough, combined with aestheitc perception and expression provides a symbiotic fertile ground for innovation and growth.
In her Times blog, "Go to Detroit, Young People," Detroit writer Karen Dybis quotes David Byrne: "The skies here are bigger than in New York."
I love periodically returning to the city at this time and historically, wasn't this a similar experience in those early days of Ford and others that too provided a growth moment - a long moment - for this city? It's happening again.
Check out the Kunsthalle's FB page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kunsthalle-Detroit/108340745867164
And the video of the opening: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Em3iCTBnol4
some other press on the Kunsthalle:
New museum, Kunsthalle Detroit, to open exhibition space
Video art museum takes shine to Detroit's gritty charm
Art museum to open in rough section of Detroit
A New Cultural Light in Detroit