Thrilled to be invited by Thomas Bell and Christina de Roos of Spread Art to South West, Detroit, Michigan as part of their residency program. My time in February marks the beginning of a beautiful relationship between Detroit and myself, Spread Art and my organization DE-CONSTRUKT [projekts].
I was fortunate to meet so many wonderful artists and artist organizations. It was a bit overwhelming digesting the magnitude of art/public initiatives, the rich history of this massive city, the magnitude of problems that a bankrupt city must deal with, the snow and extreme cold, and the opportunity to visit the Motown Museum, all of which almost blew my mind.
Just to name a few of the folks I was fortunate to meet and hope to work with are Carl W. Goines, artist and executive director of 555 Gallery, artist J. Mavis Farr, Edible Hut, LeMarre and Dancers, Juan Martinez from Pedalista, and artist Vito Valdez.
During my time in Detroit I was invited to speak with several students at the Western International High School in Detroit. These students, all interested in the arts and design, were a joy to speak with and I was really amazed how articulate and proactive they were about working in the arts.
I also had the privilege to have a tour of the Detroit Institute of Art by artist and educator Vito Valdez who is a staff-teaching artist for the Art Studio in the Wayne and Joan Webber Education Wing. This Art Studio provides a unique opportunity for visitors to have hands-on-art-making experiences.
About Spread Art
Spread Art presents multidisciplinary art events in Detroit and beyond, with a focus on experimentation and innovation. Spread Art supports work that pushes creative boundaries, incorporates technology, invites public participation, and/or explores immediately relevant social themes.
Spread Art is affiliated with Detroit Contemporary, which houses a performance venue, art gallery, rehearsal facilities, Art studios and a huge outdoor garden with a stage, urban garden and fire pit. The residency is in Hubbard Farms in South West Detroit, it serves as a gathering space for creatives and community activists.
Now what is Ms. Arena doing in Detroit stay tuned………