Artefacting in Detroit; the Aftermath of a Motor City on exhibition at Local Project in Queens NY - 45-10 Davis Street, Long Island City Queens
Opening reception Sat Nov. 5th from 7pm - 10pm. At 8pm a short 10 minute film will lead into an open discussion on regeneration in Detroit’s East Side. Exhibition through Nov. 15th.
Photography of the site specific installations “Elements of Post Industrial Power”, short video, flags of hope made from local Detroiters on discarded fabric, & small paintings will give further insight into the artist’s objective of surpassing division in the name of peace, hope & togetherness.
Perspective on the participatory installation “Spire; a Beacon of Hope” by Sam Wells, Detroiter, collaborator & participant
The Artefacting project in Detroit stirred up mix feels among community members and participants. Some felt that the use of donated flags and old car tires wasn’t fit for artistic expression. Many embraced the idea of using materials, thought to be useless, as a way to shed light on a dwindling neighborhood. Some residents and community leaders felt violated and disrespected by the artwork. They saw it as an invasion by outsiders who wanted to use the blight for their personal gains. Supporters of the project saw beauty in its resourceful artistry. Even residents from surrounding suburban areas saw the project as a way to support Detroit’s revitalization. One unique aspect of this project was the way it brought together the supporters and naysayer. It opened a very needed dialogue between the two parties. Participants got a chance to share their opinions about the city. Issues of race and class inequalities may have been the source of much dissent. The Artefacting project was able to shine light on these deep and complex issues. In my view the project represented the idea that Detroit is a city full of hope. As we adjust to the challenges brought on by dismal economic conditions, we must be willing to work together as human beings to tackle these problems. The Artefacting project showed that whether people agreed or disagree with the artwork, we all care for the city. At the core of the project is a strong desire to create dialogue within the community so that we can face our common challenges in a concerted effort. At such a pivotal time in Detroit’s history, it’s important what we spread a message of hope and prosperity. Let’s be the beacon of hope for Detroit.
A two painting series “Tire-d” depict a transformation and metamorphosis to humanized tire stacks.
Pictures of the opening night: