Detroit’s unique and partly abandoned cityscape has scarred its image around the world for decades. But in the last several years journalists have begun to view the city through a different lens, focusing on the wide range of contemporary artists finding inspiration amid the emptiness and adding a more complex chapter to the story of a city long labeled as a haunting symbol of U.S. economic decline. In Canvas Detroit, Julie Pincus and Nichole Christian combine vibrant full-color photography of the city’s much-buzzed-about art scene with thoughtful narrative that explores the art and artists that are re-creating Detroit.
Canvas Detroit captures hundreds of pieces of artwork in many forms—including large-scale and small-scale murals, sculptures, portraits, light projections, wearable art, and installations (made with wood, glass, living plants, fiber, and fabric). Works are situated in both obvious and more hidden spaces, including on and in houses, garages, factories, alleyways, doors, and walls, while some structures have been entirely transformed into art. Pincus and Christian profile creators working in Detroit, including internationally known figures like Banksy, Matthew Barney, and Tyree Guyton; prominent Detroit artists such as Scott Hocking, Jerome Ferretti, and Robert Sestock; and collectives like Power House Productions, Hygenic Dress League, the Empowerment Plan, and Theatre Bizarre. Canvas Detroit also includes an introductory essay by Mame Jackson, and contributions by John Gallagher, Michael Hodges, Rebecca Hart, and Linda Yablonsky that contextualize the current artistic moment in the city.
This beautifully designed and informative volume showcases the stunning breadth and depth of artwork currently being done in Detroit. It will be essential reading for anyone interested in arts and culture in the city.
About the Author
Julie Pincus is an award-winning graphic designer specializing in brand identity and communications for Fortune 500 companies, nonprofit arts organizations, and foundations. She received her BFA from the University of Michigan and her MFA from Yale University. Born and raised in metropolitan Detroit, Julie now lives in New York City with her husband.
Nichole Christian is a writer and Detroit native who began her career as a staff member for some of the nation’s top news outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, Time magazine, the New York Times, and the Detroit Free Press. Her work appears in the books Dear Dad: Reflections on Fatherhood and Portraits 9/11/01: The Collected "Portraits of Grief" from the New York Times. She holds a BA in journalism from Wayne State University’s Journalism Institute for Media Diversity and lives in suburban Detroit with her husband and daughter.