This mural was created for and installed in Woodbridge (Detroit) as part of a commission by myself and Ian Swanson
. The neighborhood watch eyes spelled a secret message in morse code stating that it's hidden meaning was 'Something Uplifting' to poke fun at the concept of public art being required to enhance the mood of its residents. Vinyl, oil paint and resin on marine grade plywood. (2011)
This room was used to house much of the equipment used to renovate the building 71 Garfield in Detroit to be turned into artist studios and housing. Along with installing a floor that creates the optical illusion of another dimension of cubes I created a video of the banal activities (such as laying tile) that is shown to the visitor as you stand on the installation. This was meant as a reminder of all the labor involved in creating a 'new' clean space which is to remove any evidence of their activity and to show a subtle appreciate for their efforts. The room also served as a meeting and workshop place for the public before it was officially turned into a rentable studio. (2010)
The 'Art Spot' was an ambitious community art project that was my first ever in Detroit. Upon the invitation of my friend Rachel Klegon we sought to interconnect many of our interests, in this case it involved curating artwork and working with people that lived nearby to help make it more interesting.
There was absolutely no infrastructure, and the only precedence was Tyree Guyton's Heidelberg Projects. A backdrop needed to be built, works could only be hung or placed onto easels in the absence of walls, the blinds had to be opened and closed everyday for insurance reasons, my partner's laptop was stolen out of my car on the first day of install, it was a very intesive project. Thankfully many friends pitched in to put in artwork, which set a precedence for artists I worked with in other curatorial capacities later on: Justin Marshall, Isaac Richard, Mark Sengbusch and Janine Surma
Enlarged felt cat-toy based sculptures by Janine Surma
The main idea was to find another way to cater to local businesses that have made it through the tough economy of Detroit (previously one of Klegon's main tasks was to inform businesses if they were untidy and to report it if no action was being done, not exactly an uplifting daily task.) The imagery found throughout the neighborhood was appropriated for the designs onto the windows.
Rachel Klegon helping to install a large cat made out of plastic flowers by Isaac Richard.
This collaboration took place with EcoZoic and Rachel Klegon who was part of the East Warren Avenue Business Association at the time. The project employed artwork and volunteers painting local logos onto the windows to call attention to the potential of the vacant storefronts. It was a celebration of the businesses that had survived hard times and the artists helped to answer questions about their work during the opening of a new farmers market, recycling center and other project. Everything took place along East Warren Avenue for an entire month and set the precedent for Klegon's current career where non-profits and artists call attention to areas in need. (2008)