Friday, September 28, 2007

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Intersection Press

A list of media coverage for the exhibition.

UM internal Vodcast/UM News Service:

Metro Times preview:

Real Detroit (blurb):

Model D - Detroit:

The Detroit News:

WDET (live) Radio (we’re at about the 45 minute mark):

Metro Times event coverage:

Real Detroit blurb:

Marilyn Zimmerwoman and Bob Sickles

giclee print

Marilyn Zimmerman is a photography/installation/performance artist and curator and an associate professor of the Department of Art and Art History, Wayne State University, Detroit. She is also a post-modern post hippie anticensorship feminist working in collaborative communitarian projects envisioning an urban utopia Her interrelated and often collaborative social documentary projects involve re-envisioning and transforming societal patterns inclusive of race/class/gender, the urban past, the (post) nuclear family and the representation of aging and women. Her work in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, The ABN-AMRO Bank of Amsterdam, the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England.

Bob Sickles is invested in both traditional and digital photo practices and specializes in the mapping of 3 Dimensional spaces both real and imagined into 2 Dimensional visualizations. He is an alumni of Wayne State University's Department of Art and Art History, a WSU Master of Library and Information Science Candidate and currently teaching at WSU.

Vito Jesus Valdez

Memorial to Native Peoples/Border Baroque
(Memorial located west of this intersection in Wick Park between Martin Luther King Blvd and Davenport)

Border Baroque #1 is part of a series of multi-layered works that look at immigration and US borders – those crossing over as well as those living here. Who came first? Who is the immigrant? From the earliest settlement at the river came our first footpath and trail into a road – one later called Woodward.

With a history of people arriving here from all over the globe, Detroit is a great intersection for many cultures. Crossing rivers, oceans, bridges and borders they came to find work and we took them in. They arrived at Michigan Central and took cable cars into the city where Woodward was a central artery separating east from west. This artery continues to reflect the migration and ensuing cultural diversity of our city.

Vito Jesus Valdez, second generation Mexican-American was born in Wyandotte, MI, and has been an artist and educator for more than two decades. While serving in the U.S. Army as a surgical tech, he re-discovered his love of art and enrolled at the Center for Creative Studies in Detroit upon his discharge.

Valdez left the U.S. in 1988 to work as an independent artist in Montreal, Canada and later received an artist-in residence award from the Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium. He subsequently received invitations to exhibit in Havanna, Cuba; Zacatecas, Mexico; Germany, and Paris, France.

Since his return to the States in 1992 his concentration has been on community art projects on the U.S./Canadian border in Detroit, and has received numerous grants and public art commissions. His most recent mural was for the Detroit Public Library Campbell Branch. Valdez also works in the education department at the Detroit Institute of Arts and continues to exhibit his work in Canada and the U.S.

Nick Tobier and Rachel Timlin

Detroit Service Collaborative

We've waited for a bus in the rain. In the snow. In the sun. So have other people.

Around this city, as others, there are a variety of options from a steel post marking the stop to a 19th century-esque pavilion.

Since we're all in it together, and since the wait can be a treat rather than a task, we conceived of this roving bench. To offer comfort, shade, music, conversation. A gathering spot for the gatherings that form and then disperse at the bus stop.

While we started here at Woodward and Mack, and got to know the culture of this corner, we see the appearance of our stop as part of a potential for other stops. During the course of this project, we formed the Detroit Service Collaborative, with an eye towards more social/functional work throughout the city.

Growing up in New York City, Nick Tobier is a lifelong participant observer of street life and the social life of public places.

Prior to staging public spectacles, I offered small street side services--a bridge to assist crossing puddles, a woven and upholstered mobile tent that dispensed hot chocolate, and a tricycle driven chandelier that illuminated dark streets. The once utilitarian services have become celebratory events more than strictly functional objects, and I believe strongly that this public celebration is inherently functional. Recent events include an eccentric walking tour of Lower Manhattan, an interactive transit device in a Boston subway station, a tricycle-driven chandelier, and a human fountain for a wading pool in Toronto.

Most often I have described my work as situational. If there's a situation, I'll try and interrupt it with something that is gently out of place--an aberrant gesture, a curious movement, a mis-used object.
I'm keen on how I can use humor as a disarming tactic in real or imagined scenarios that play out in everyday places.

I and hope that my actions as an artist provoke the possibility that everyday places and objects can be rather extra ordinary.

Nick Tobier currently lives in Ann Arbor, where he is Assistant Professor at the School of Art and Design, University of Michigan since 2003. More on Tobier at

Rachel Timlin works full time as the Cultural Arts Coordinator for the City of Farmington Hills. In her spare time, she makes neckties and other miscellaneous fashion items for her line The New Generic Brand (, and works occasionally as a freelance graphic designer and consultant.

Timlin studied at Central Michigan University, The Glasgow School of Art in Scotland, and the University of New Mexico, where she graduated with a degree in Photography and Cultural Studies in 2001. Because she finds it far too tedious, Timlin doesn’t keep detailed records of her past exhibitions or accomplishments – however, she does admit to having one or two good ideas over the years. She currently resides in Hamtramck.

Gary Schwartz

Animated Film/Zoetrope

(Sound Design by David Gazdowicz & Andrew Fagen of SANDWICHSEAT.COM)

HCDJ is a short animated film I made in response to Judge Augustus Woodward’s 200th Anniversary. I came to Detroit taking up the education gauntlet at the College for Creative Studies as a Professor in the Animation & Digital Media Department. I moved to this unique city after spending a quarter century in another fabled and notorious city, the city of the Angels, Los Angeles.

My early experiences here (4 years ago) in Detroit include getting very lost in a city with at best out-of-date, missing, questionable and vague signage. Those biographical elements spill over into the persona of Judge Augustus Woodward, getting lost in the city he himself designed, and then leaving for greener pastures.


Recycling the wooden walk-cycle puppets from the animated video, HCDJ, Judge Woodward gets re-purposed as a zoetrope. Always moving forward & never getting anywhere. Is this progress?

Gary Schwartz is an award-winning animator, director, artist filmmaker & educator. Mr. Schwartz has conducted intensive hands-on animation workshops in elementary, middle, high school, under-graduate, graduate, post graduate, professional training, film festivals, museums, summer art camps, community centers, prisons & psychiatric hospitals in the United States & the world. Through his company, Single Frame Films, Gary has produced, designed and directed animation for Disney, Sesame Street, MTV, Fox Television, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and others.

Mr. Schwartz is currently Associate Professor in the Animation & Digital Media Department of the College for Creative Studies.

Stephen William Schudlich

Urban Picked Up Paper Color Chart

60” x 55”
Paper, Digital Output, Acrylic Cube

This chart is comprised of color information tiles representative of waste paper found on the streets surrounding the intersection of Woodward Ave. and Mack Ave./MLK Jr. Blvd. Data was collected throughout July of 2007. The locale I concentrated on had an abundance of this discarded paper, which is telling in itself. I feel this waste paper is a source of determining some of the habits and activities of the people who frequent this area. I catalogued samples based on “purpose” and colors were broken down into a CMYK printer formula and given names. J. Crew gives us colors like celery and pumpkin, The Urban Picked Up Paper Color Chart gives us colors like filter (a cigarette butt), ronald red (McDonald’s box) or bookie (yellowed page from a copy of Steinbeck’s Cannery Row.)

Stephen Schudlich's work has appeared in The New York Times, Health magazine, Runner’s World, The Atlantic Monthly, Eating Well, Forbes, The Utne Reader,
The Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today. Other clients have included WGBH (Boston), HBO, Honda, Heineken, McDonald’s, Nike, Comedy Central, and Kodak. In addition he has worked with many children’s publishers on educational projects, as well as projects outside of the educational forum. His illustrations are an integral part of the global eBay brand and his work was featured in the advertising and signage for the Tony Award winning musical, Avenue Q. He recently illlustrated the book The Down-to-Earth Guide to Global Warming which was published by Scholastic and authored by Cambria Gordon and Laurie David,the Oscar winning producer of An Inconvenient Truth.

His work has been recognized in Print’s Regional Design Annuals, How’s Self Promotion Issues, Print’s Best T-Shirt Promotions, Fresh Ideas in Promotion, Art Direction, Graphic Design USA, The Best of Business Card Design, Postcard Graphics: The Best Advertising and Promotion Design, and the New York Art Director’s Annual.

He has participated in several one man shows as well as many group exhibits including Syntax Error, an exhibit shared with Mark Mothersbaugh from the innovative eighties musical and performance group DEVO, at Cement Space in Detroit.

Stephen is a faculty member at the College for Creative Studies as well as Wayne State University in Detroit where he teaches Illustration and Graphic Design. He has served as a guest instructor at Rocky Mountain College of Design, and Metro State University in Denver, Colorado. He has been a member of the AIGA both in Denver and Detroit where, he sat on the board, as well as a member of the Illustrators’ Partnership of America.

In 2005 he and his wife Erin started hoop-t, an online shop to promote design and image born from experience living in the urban environment. In that same year Stephen wrote and illustrated “Mr. Steve, tales of an inner city public school substitute teacher.” A dark, but true look back at his several years as a sub in a problematic educational system in a struggling city.

John W. Sauvé

Steel and Glass
(Located in the Nevelson Court near the rear entrance to the building)

During a planning meeting for this exhibition, artist Jack Johnson relayed a story to me about growing up in Detroit not far from our location. As a kid, Jack had a paper route in the 12th and Clairmount area. On a Sunday morning in July 1967, Jack was delivering papers when the Detroit Riots broke out after a police raid on a “Blind Pig.” The “Intersection” sculpture is a brief narrative on Johnson’s experience that morning and its effect on his life as an accomplished Detroit artist.

Stephanie Rowden (audio) and Hannah Smotrich (map)

a place has its stories

As newcomers to the block we were naturally curious about its past and present. We were interested in finding what we couldn’t possibly know as outsiders. What can’t we see? What would you like us to imagine? What should we know?

In search of stories, Stephanie took a series of strolls (literal and figurative) with a handful of people who have known this block in different ways, at different times. With each walk, the life history of the block became more and more alive and present. Hannah joined in on some of these walks, gathering visual details as the stories unfolded.

From her recorded strolls, Stephanie wove together some of the memories, insights, wishes and chance encounters she found as she listened her way around the block. From the photographic fragments she collected, Hannah created an impressionistic map — a means of connecting the stories back to the block.

Acknowledgments and Thank Yous:
For sharing their time, knowledge and voices: Paul Ganson, Pat Dorn, Scott Hocking, Jiam Des Jardins, Sister Mary Watson, Margaret Sinclair, Willard Farmer, and Carolyn Brooks.
For recording assistance: Kyle Norris (inside St Pats Senior Center) and Maria Howes (street sounds).
For helping to realize this project: Nick Sousanis, Stephanie Lucas, Laura Hunt, and the staff at St. Patrick’s Senior Center.

Stephanie Rowden is an installation artist with a special interest in sound. Her audio installations and sculptures been presented in a variety of settings including a portrait gallery in the Brooklyn Museum, the vaults under the Brooklyn Bridge, a public library outside of Chicago as well as a number of galleries in New York and Chicago. Recent projects include sound design for a collaborative performance project with the writer Anne Carson and an audio documentary about friendship and aging.

Rowden has received grants and fellowships from ArtServe Michigan / the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, the Mid-Atlantic Arts Alliance / National Endowment for the Arts, ArtMatters, Inc., the University of Michigan Arts of Citizenship program and Artists Space of New York. She has been an artist-in-residence at the MacDowell Colony and the Ragdale Foundation. Rowden holds a BA in Studio Art from Brown University and an MA in Community Counseling from Eastern Michigan University. She is currently an Assistant Professor at the School of Art & Design at the University of Michigan.

Her work is represented by Littlejohn Contemporary in New York City.

Senghor Reid

The Intersection: W15 EP


An intersection is a landmark where thought and action converge, where human beings collectively determine their identity and direction in the world. At every intersection symbols of the past and present compel the direction of a community of people, shaping their immediate future as a fork in the road awaits the next step.

As the industrial age expires, Detroit finds itself lost without an identity. Massive mounds of decay, fast food chains, store front churches, check cashing offices, liquor stores, beauty suppliers and drifters abound precariously at intersections across the city. Abandoned and crumbling facades stand silently, witness to complacency, violence and neglect.

W15 examines the dichotomy of various intersections for a fifteen mile stretch along Woodward Avenue in Detroit. The film documents the businesses, services and opportunities available along an avenue that runs directly through the core of the city. Canvassing several key intersections, the photographers have captured Detroit’s deconstructing landscape in a series of images playing out as a photomontage, accompanied by narration.

Thus, a series of questions underlies the film. Where do Detroiters stand as inhabitants of a shrinking city? How can citizens make a better life for themselves, their families and their children? What can Detroit learn from urban planning of the past? Where are their intersections currently leading them as a society?

The major goal in the screening and distribution of W15 is to make it available to Detroit businesses, educational institutions, libraries, museums, governing bodies, local community-based organizations and individuals interested in the rebirth of the Detroit area.

Senghor Reid, born in Detroit, Michigan, attended Detroit Public Schools that included Golightly Educational Center and Renaissance High School. His interest and training in art developed early in life as he attended many special art programs before graduating from Cass Technical High School in 1994. As an art major at the University of Michigan, his interests in art, writing and film broadened. In 1998 he attended the New York School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture where he participated in marathon sessions in drawing and painting. Reid received a BFA from the University of Michigan in 1999 and a Masters in the Art of Teaching (MAT) in art education from Wayne State University in 2004. He currently teaches art at Cass Technical High School.

As a painter, Senghor Reid has developed both figurative and abstract works. His works utilize a brilliant palette and almost tactile brush strokes that punctuate political and cultural issues. Reid’s current themes for the past several years have been captured in a ‘magazine’ format juxtaposing written word, modified text, and the human figure called “The Talkies”. His series of drawings, paintings and collage works were initially based on hip hop culture, its entertainers, contributions, and subtle hypocrisies. Recently, Reid has expanded his scope to the undercurrent of politics and race strewn throughout the visual arts in America.

Reid was the recipient of the prestigious Governor’s Award for Emerging Artist in 2001. He was commissioned by the Arts League of Michigan to create five works depicting the Hip Hop Movement for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio. His works have been shown in group exhibitions at the Skylight Gallery in Brooklyn, NY; Meadowbrook Gallery, Rochester, MI; the Detroit Contemporary Gallery, G.R. N’namdi Gallery, Sherry Washington Gallery, National Conference of Artists Gallery, and the Museum of African American History in Detroit, MI. He has had solo exhibitions at the JRainey Gallery and Detroit Repertory Theater Gallery. Reid’s works are in many collections including Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan and the State of Michigan Board of Education in Lansing, MI.

Ted Ramsay


Woodward & Mack/MLK in Detroit and State Street and Liberty Street are icon markers for their respective areas as well as the location of the two WORK GALLERIES. These streets are intersections widely known by contemporary inhabitants, and memory junctures for thousands more. But nothing would exist without people to document the collective past and contribute to the present and future. The genis loci or sense of place exists because people know these locations and reference them. These mnemonic places are important only because the people who live there and have lived there are important, and this is also true of the WORK GALLERY site, which exists because people make it important by wanting to use it to meet, connect, and share their visual ideas.

Therefore I have developed a series of pieces for the exhibition constructed of subjective human images that will connect to form the visual intersections in my work about these two places. At first glance the visual dynamics of vectors intersecting, connecting and crossing will present themselves to the viewer. Only after study and scrutiny of the components will the real figurative images become apparent to the audience. These subtle human forms act as metaphorical reminders that people are the real soul and spirit underlying the intersecting places in Detroit and Ann Arbor as well as the people connecting on this project. Everything is about, for, and held together by people!

Ted Ramsay
is Professor of Art at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor. From 1961 to 1964 he taught at the University of Iowa, where he and his colleague Frank Wachowiak wrote the book Emphasis: Art. He received his B.A. in studio art and an M.A. and M.F.A. in painting and art history from the University of Iowa. Ramsay also holds an M.F.A. from Cranbrook Academy of Art.

Ramsay has been a visiting artist at: Canberra Institute of Art, A.C.T.; University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania; University of Hawaii, Fiber Department, Manoa Campus, Hawaii; Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam, Holland; Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, Gatlinburg, Tennessee; Penland School, Penland, North Carolina; Cranbrook Academy Art, Fiber Department, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan; Southwest Craft Center, San Antonio, Texas; and The University of Toledo, Department of Art at the Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, Ohio.

Ted Ramsay’s work has been published in The Art and Craft of Papermaking, Sophie Dawson, Quarto Publishing, London, 1992; Sculpture: Technique-Form-Content; Arthur Williams, Davis Publications, 1989; Making It In Paper: An Indianian Mill, Twinrocker: Kathryn Clark, NEA grant publication; Glas & Keramiek, Asperen, Netherlands, 1988; The Art of Papermaking, Bernard Toal, 1983; and Emphasis: Art, Wachowiak and Ramsay, International Textbook Company, Scranton, Pennsylvania 1965.

Since coming to Michigan, Ted Ramsay’s work has been exhibited in invitational exhibitions and one person shows at the Element Gallery in New York; Gruen Gallery in Chicago; Leopold-Hoesch-Museum, Duren, Germany; University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor, Michigan; Flint Institute of Art, Flint, Michigan; Kidd Gallery in Birmingham, Michigan; Kalamazoo Institute of Art, Kalamazoo, Michigan; Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, Ohio; Detroit Institute of Art, Detroit, Michigan; Mendocino Art Center, Mendocino, California; Davenport Municipal Art Gallery, Davenport, Iowa; Gallery WooDuk, Seoul, Korea; Amsterdamseweg 441, Amstelveen, Netherlands; Orszagos Szechenyi Konyvtar Gallery, Budapest, Hungary; and the American Cultural Center, Tel Aviv, Israel.

At the University of Michigan, Ramsay has taken an active role in developing and teaching basic undergraduate and advanced studio courses in the arenas of drawing, papermaking, and painting. He has chaired the Slusser Gallery committee, and directed the operations of the gallery for five years. Ramsay served on executive committees, and has chaired the undergraduate committee, held summer papermaking workshops at the University of Michigan, across the USA, and abroad. He is the recipient of two Rackham research grants, an OVPR grant for travel and research in China. Prof. Ramsay was the first artist in residence at the Humanities Institute. Working with University of Michigan administrators and staff, he created two handmade books used in the ceremony to inaugurate Lee C. Bollinger as the 12th President of the University of Michigan.

Jocelyn Rainey

"pieces of a dream" (a tribute to the women that stand for the dream)
Media: mixed

It’s inside the genes to create the difference

Dan Price

Material Transformation Project: Silver
16” x 20”
Sterling Silver

This project features an heirloom silver spoon I got from my mother. I polished the spoon to a mirror finish and captured an image of Woodward Avenue in it. I then flattened the spoon and used the material to fabricate a whistle, which I used to capture the attention of passerby at the same spot on Woodward Avenue.

Dan Price is Assistant Professor of Art with a joint appointment to The Residential College and the School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan. He holds a B.A. in Fine Art from the Colorado College and a M.F.A. in Sculpture with honors from The Rhode Island School of Design.

Price has exhibited his videos and sculpture at the Institute of Contemporary Art, London; Triple Candie Gallery, New York; White Columns Gallery, New York; and at the Rhode Island School of Design Art Museum in Providence.

Before coming to the University of Michigan, Price taught high school in South Africa, and completed a two-year course of study as a Core Student at the Penland School of Art and Crafts in North Carolina. He has worked for several design firms including NODESIGN in New Orleans and The Glass Project in Jamestown, Rhode Island.

“My studio practice incorporates the use of many media, but is unified by an interest in humor and struggle. I present my work to evolve questions about the interdependence of technology and human relationships. Material Transformation Project: Silver is third in a series of artworks in which I attempt the poetic transformation of various materials. The transformative processes range from shredding to soldering. As a practice, the work lives somewhere between sculpture, performance and photography.”

Andy Malone

The Biggest Small Town in the World
Photographic print, magnets, and paint

This work was derived from a series of short interviews conducted on the corner of Woodward and Mack/MLK. Each person was asked the same 2-part question: “Do you live in the city of Detroit? Why or why not?” Responses from some of the interviewees inspired stories that branch off and weave together. The result is a visual depiction of interdependence that is familiar to many Detroiters.

Andy Malone holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Detroit Mercy, and has worked in the exhibit and custom furniture industry for eleven years. He is currently employed as a Senior Engineer.

In 1999, Andy worked with the Detroit Collaborative Design Center to produce presentation drawings and animations for the Adams Butzel Recreation Center and the Saint Vincent DePaul Headquarters.

In 2004, Andy co-founded a design consultancy firm called Studio Architech whose clients include O2, Azimuth Consulting, The Detroit Institute of Arts, Shir Shalom Temple, Walsh Financial and Woodbridge CDC.

From 2002 to 2007 He served on the Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit (CAID) Board of Trustees (and Vice President from 2004 to 2007). In addition to CAID board and committee work, Andy has produced graphics for postcards, signage, t-shirts, and even a billboard on Woodward.

Andy's whimsical machines and drawings have been shown in over thirty exhibitions since 1995, most notably in the Selecti show at Detroit Artist Market (chosen by Whitney curator Lawrence Rinder). He was a juror for the DEMF Public Art Exhibition, Animate Object and Game Show Detroit. Andy also curated the Bravo! Bravo! Exhibition at the Detroit Opera House in 2004 and 2005. Two of his whimsical mini-golf hole designs were selected for the Detroit Institute of Arts Fore!Fun exhibition in 2007.

Recently he designed Woodward Corridor Gallery Map

Andy, his wife Elaine, and daughter Julia live in Detroit.

More information can be found here:

Jacque Liu

No Entry
93” x 57” x 5.5”
Courtesy Lemberg Gallery.

In its most base function, a window allows viewers to see in and out of a space. However, in the context of many of the buildings in Detroit, these windows are bricked or boarded up for the sake of security. Entry is blocked. Here at the UM Detroit space, it serves as art and in turn, becomes an entry point for understanding. Through form and aesthetic, No Entry seeks to add to the continuing dialogue of Detroit’s social and urban landscape.

Jack Johnson

Perpendicular: Wake Up Call of the Invisible People
Mixed Media

Woodward – Mack – M. L. King

An exampled American intersection, an example because it typifies all that is right and all that is wrong with America and all that is right and all that is wrong with the world.

I wish to indulge your intellect for a few brief moments. Out of the window of this beautiful million dollar structure another world exists. A world that we all know exists but really never touches but a few of us.

To many, it would seem ironic to give this assignment to a man of my history. Yes, I am an artist and this is technically an art show but to look at me and to look at my work, one would immediately rush to judgment and think “hell he is one of them, one of the invisible people” who slipped in and now wants to make us all feel guilty for everything that is wrong with America. You would be right on one account; I am the invisible man, an African American male in an urban environment, self taught, uneducated abstract artist.

You only need walk up three flights of stairs for an aerial view and from that vantage point depending on how you viewed the “lay of the land” an intersection is a cross or it’s an “X”. Webster defines it as two right angles that bisect. The human condition is marked here; a start, a finish, a known point. Some here take life for granted. Some seek to improve their condition. Some have mentally given up and lost their awareness.

I was motivated to do this project because one Sunday morning in July, 10 years ago (30 years after the riots of 1967) I was driving down Myrtle (M. L. King Boulevard) and there was a large house with a family on the front porch barbecuing and drinking beer. Sunday morning 0800, this is not typical, it was rare yet it was funny and sad. I was building a new computer so I wanted to get out to CompUSA in Madison Heights early. It opened at 0930, I got there around 0915 and there was a long, long line. I don’t remember but some piece of technology was debuting on the market that day. It was sad because the people of this neighborhood outside of these doors are my people and I love them but they are your people too. They are invisible because of poverty, illiteracy, drugs, crime, but worst of all an overwhelming sense of hopelessness (showstopper). They don’t vote and the police often don’t come when they call. This does not apply to everybody you pass on the streets but the numbers are so stifling, the point is, this is a wake up. Chances are we can’t save most of them but we save the ones we can – the babies. We save humanity by educating the children. The school system has failed. The blame is abundant – enough to go around. The teachers, administration, the parents, the politicians, even the children themselves are to blame. We can point or we can change. We don’t teach reality, we don’t teach time management, we don’t teach how to study, what to study and there is no follow up or accountability. As a neighborhood, city, region we are only as strong as the weakest link. We begin to do the impossible with every single effort and we realize that the invisible are not so hard to recognize because they are us, all of us. Wake up world!

Jack Johnson, born February 14, 1955, in Vallscreek, WV, in a one room shack in a coal mining town (parish, village or hollow), moved to Detroit and family split up in 1965. I was a paperboy during the riots delivering Sunday morning papers. 12th street was most of my route but I’d never seen a “blind pig” in my life, not until July 1967. Got my education, joined the military – stayed for 25 years and I’ve been painting every since. Started out as therapy then became a hobby, evolved into a “whole nother thang”. Now my work is me, an essential sense. My work changes a great deal over time but is probably best described as abstract expressionism. I am an abstract painter.

Deb King

Oppidanal Drift
Flash Animation

Oppidanal Drift investigates the movement of Detroit's population northward on Woodward from 1701 to 1967 based on race and economic status. The 1967 uprising in Detroit has often been described as the turning point of Detroit's community/economic health. However, many historians point to the census of 1940 as an indicator of a major slowdown in Detroit's development. This trend was artificially reversed by an influx of workers for the war efforts of World War II and the following post-war boom.

Deb King is a Detroit-based artist/publisher whose work rises out of her history in performance art (1973-1984). She is a partner in Past Tents Press (founded by Dennis Teichman and Paul Schwartz )and is the founder, director and arts editor of mark(s) online journal for the arts -

Upcoming exhibitions include The Veil: Visible & Invisible Spaces, a traveling show curated by Jennifer Heath and Harvest at Alley Culture in Detroit.

Scott Hocking

Myrtle Mound
Sharpie, Wood, Plastic Security Dome
(Located above you)

Evidence of the ancient Native Americans known as Mound Builders is well documented and preserved throughout the Ohio and Mississippi river valleys. Few know that the Detroit area was once covered with similar earthworks. It has long been debated who these people were, as most mounds predate the tribes first contacted by European settlers, and legends vary. They have been attributed to the Tuteloes, Mississippians, Hopewell, Adena, Woodland Period people, and even ancient Phoenician copper-mining mariners. What is certain is that these mounds were often used as burial and/or ceremonial sites, not unlike ancient pyramids, ziggurats, and monuments found worldwide.

One of the largest local mounds was situated on the eastern bank of the River Rouge, not far from where it empties into the Detroit River. The “Great Mound” was said to have originally been 300 feet wide and 40 feet tall, and packed with bones, pottery, and tools, that were easily exposed by wandering cattle. Like most mounds, it was destroyed to make way for farmland and industry. Nowadays, in its place sit brownfields and blighted Delray streets, a stone’s throw across the Rouge from the blast furnaces of Zug Island.

By 1925, U of M Prof. of Archeology W.B. Hinsdale wrote that the great numbers of mounds were “vanishing rapidly.” Wayne County had only 12 left by then, and he estimated “at least 500 more must have been destroyed within the last 150 years.”

I have been researching this history of Detroit in order to make a present day burial mound of sorts, which will inevitably be leveled just like its predecessors. Where my mound will be built is still up in the air; but, in the meantime, I have been sketching out ideas of what it might have looked like here, when the only ‘intersections’ were Native trails and animal paths.

About Scott:

Anne Fracassa

Time Crossing (City Symphony)
Mixed media on paper
6.5’ x 8.5’

Drive down Woodward in Detroit or Main Street in Ann Arbor on any day. Everywhere, you see the collision of past, present and future. State-of-the-art lofts are built in 19th century buildings, new pavement is laid over century-old brick streets, and chain drug stores replace pharmacies. Starbucks, not the neighborhood diner, substitutes for the town square, dispensing essential daily beverages and bringing the world to tiny tables. For the time being, beautiful water towers remain on the roofs of old buildings, silently witnessing the collisions below.

Anne C. Fracassa is a Detroit resident whose drawings and paintings of the urban environment reflect her love of Detroit and its rich history. Originally from Toledo, Ohio, Anne moved to Detroit in 1961 after receiving a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Political Science from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She completed a Master of Fine Arts degree at Wayne State University in 1998. Anne’s Detroit studio is in the Pioneer Building, a converted factory located in the New Center Area of Detroit. Her work is exhibited in various galleries in the Metropolitan Detroit area.

Tirtza Even and Mary Heinen

Burning To Leave: Voices of Women Returning From Prison
Video/ 3-D animation

A short segment from an hour long work-in-progress documentary video investigating the circumstances confronted by a handful of women as they reenter and intersect with urban society and social systems after long periods of incarceration in various state correctional facilities. Three urban contexts for the inmates' return will be explored: Jackson, Flint and Detroit. An initial sketch of a portion of the Detroit story is shown here.

The displayed video segment is part of larger project, approximately 1 hour in length, produced and directed by Mary Heinen and Tirtza Even.

A practicing video artist and documentary maker for the past ten years, Tirtza Even has produced both linear and interactive video work representing the less overt manifestations of complex and sometimes extreme social/political dynamics in specific locations (e.g. Palestine, Turkey, Spain, the U.S. and Germany, among others). Her work has appeared at the Modern Art Museum, NY, at the Whitney Biennial, the Johannesburg Biennial, as well as in many other festivals, galleries and museums in the United States, Israel and Europe, and has been purchased for the permanent collection of the Modern Art Museum (NY), the Jewish Museum (NY), the Israel Museum (Jerusalem), among others. She has been an invited guest and featured speaker at numerous conferences and university programs, including the Whitney Museum Seminar series, the Digital Flaherty Seminar, Art Pace annual panel, ACM Multimedia, The Performance Studies International conference (PSI), The Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts conference (SLSA) and others.

Currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan’s School of Art & Design, Even has been teaching Video and Multimedia Production and Post-Production, Experimental and Documentary Film Theory, Video Art and Media Theory and Production at New York University, at Columbia University and at a number of other colleges and universities in the U.S. and abroad, and has published articles about video art history and theory in Israel and the United States.

A Fulbright scholar, She completed a Masters Degree in Cinema Studies (with a focus on Documentary and Ethnographic Film Production and Theory) and a second Masters in the Interactive Telecommunication Program, both at New York University.

Mary Heinen (Glover) is a social justice activist and human rights worker. She was sent to prison to serve life when Gerald Ford was President. With a group of sister lifers, Mary initiated and won the landmark case: Glover vs. Johnson, 478 F. Supp. 1075 (1979). This case established as the law of the land in the United States women prisoners have the constitutional right to parity/equality in education, access to the courts, treatment, classification, wages, vocational training, placement, libraries, facilities, and state industries as do similarly-situated men. The case was brought on behalf of all women prisoners of the State of Michigan: past, present and future. This victory changed the system. It was one of several civil rights cases Mary and the women prisoners would go on to win. *

Mary’s sentence was commuted after serving 26.7 years in the MDOC. Mary was freed on August 14, 2002. She completed four years of parole and discharged. Mary now lives in Ann Arbor and works at The University of Michigan for the Prison Creative Arts Project (PCAP), which she helped found in 1990. She is the Portfolio and Linkage Administrator, creating art workshops and linkages for youth and adults in lock-ups and prisons and after reentry. She is a Steering Team member with the Michigan Prisoner Reentry Initiative (MPRI). She has a particular interest in filming documentaries. Mary is an actress, poet, story-teller, and artist.

* See: Harvard Human Rights Journal, Volume 13, Spring 2000, ISSN 1057-5057: “Human Rights and Wrongs in Our Own Backyard: Incorporating International Human Rights Protections Under Domestic Civil Rights Law- A Case Study of Women in United States Prisons,” by Martin A. Geer.

Also see

Pat Duff, Ron Watters, Nicole Jenkins

The Real Detroit Project (Part 1 The New Detroit Flag; Part 2 Bruised But Not Broken; Part 3 Detroit Positive Images)
Plexiglass, Fabric

The History of Detroit –
We explored “Positive Images” in sports, entertainment, architecture, and the culture of Detroit.

The Focus of the Future –

We focused on the dreams and hopes of the children of Detroit.

The Passion that Symbolizes our City –
Out of the fire of the riots we found a passion for the renewal of a “New Detroit”.

The Environment in which we live –
Our focus was on what was “Bruised But Not Broken” in the city of Detroit.

The New Detroit Flag: The first panel is The D meaning the history and pride of the city. The second element in our project is the future section. This section represents kids, hope, opportunity and potential. The third element has to do with the environment, which encompasses nature, green, and life. The fourth and final element rest with passion, these include zeal and spirit. The center focus point acts as a reminder that all elements are connected. Each project shares the same center axis

Ron Watters, Founder of SCIDE, was born and raised in Detroit. He studied at the University of Michigan School of Art & Design, and in 2001 received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a concentration in Industrial Design. Watters currently splits his time between Detroit and Chicago where he designs furniture, clocks and other specialty items for the home. Ron finds it inspirational to give back to the community through his designs and artistic skill sets.

Miroslav Cukovic

Vinyl Letters, Bus Stop
(Located on bus stops just north and south of this intersection respectively, along Woodward)

“…what I see here is only valid for a brief instant, I will see something else soon, something else unexpected that I could never guess. Thus this interstitial geography offers me surprises and discoveries of a kind of scaled down journey, a pool of space will in a moment take on the appearance of an isthmus, of a peninsula of emptiness. I am aware that it is the movements of my body that are producing and destroying this landscape of transparencies, a bit like a passenger on a train who sees trees and horses darting past, sees hills bending away, by my own speed, however weak it may be, I form and deform these particles of emptiness, these holes, these hollows, it is a game of construction that I develop without accessories, simply through being here or there…”

Paul Virilio
Negative Horizons

Miroslav Cukovic

The Yugoslavian native is a recent graduate of CCS and has shown widely.

Jim Cogswell

Laser-cut vinyl
(Located on exterior windows along Woodward)

Reading is a visual experience that renders its object invisible. Much of my work of the past decade has been based on an anthropomorphic alphabet: oil paintings, cut paper, photographs, drawings, ceramic tiles, rubber-stamped murals, window-vinyl. The tension between seeing my images and reading them is not easily resolved. It is meant to hold the viewer in place, an invitation to consider the nature of signs and of abstraction, and to thoughtfully experience the act of seeing itself.


Professor of Art, University of Michigan, School of Art & Design
M.F.A. (Painting and Drawing), University of New Mexico, 1982
B.A. (English Literature), Rhodes College, 1971

Born and raised in Japan as the child of missionary parents, Jim Cogswell returned to that country after receiving his undergraduate degree to begin the study and practice of painting. Since that time, his drawings, paintings, prints, and sculptures have been exhibited nationally and internationally.

In 1990, Cogswell joined the School of Art & Design faculty, where his teaching has focused on painting and drawing. During the 1992-93 academic year, he was the Charles P. Brauer Faculty Fellow at the University of Michigan Institute for the Humanities. Throughout his career at U-M, he has received numerous grants from the Office of the Vice-President for Research and the Horace P. Rackham School of Graduate Studies.

Drawn to interdisciplinary projects, Cogswell has collaborated in performance works and installations with dancers, composers, scientists, and poets as well as other visual artists. In 1995, he joined forces with his sister, installation artist Margaret Cogswell, on a site-specific installation at the Nashville Parthenon. Two years later, he worked with dancer Peter Sparling along with biostatistician Fred Bookstein and space physics research scientist John Clarke to create Seven Enigmas, staged at the Power Center for the Performing Arts in Ann Arbor. Other collaborators have included performance artist Mark Anderson and poet Richard Tillinghast. A multimedia performance work entitled The Ariel Web, created in conjunction with Tillinghast, Sparling, Bookstein, and composer Andrew Mead, was performed in March and June 2000 in Ann Arbor. As recipient of the Michigan Arts Award for 1999-2000, he worked with dancer/choreographer Evelyn Velez-Aguayo on a new performance-and-installation work in collaboration with MacArthur-prize-winning composer Bright Sheng.

Cogswell has had solo exhibitions at Florida State University Museum of Art, the Urban Institute for Contemporary Art in Grand Rapids, the Walton Art Center, Purdue University, the Nashville Parthenon, the Krasl Art Center, the Amarillo Art Center, the Frances Wolfson Art Gallery of Miami, the Institute for Contemporary Art in Tallahassee, and the Jacksonville Art Museum. He has lectured at colleges and universities around the country and has been invited to speak on his work at conferences in Japan, Ireland, Hungary, France, and Israel.

Cogswell's work can be found in the public collections of Yasuda Life Company of New York, Mbank of Houston, Barnett Banks of Florida, the Museum of Albuquerque, the City of Tallahassee, the Tamarind Institute, Valencia Community College of Orlando, Florida State University, and the University of Michigan.

Lowell Boileau

Open House
48 x 78
Acrylic on Canvas [Micropointillist]

“Open House” is a possibilist painting of the William Livingstone House which stood a little more than 2 blocks from the Intersection of Woodward and Martin Luther King. The house is renowned for being the first design by a young [soon to be superstar architect] Albert Kahn. Built in 1893, its existence came to an end on September 15, 2007, by coincidence the very same day the painting “Open House” was completed. The name ‘Open House’ contains a double entendre. In the painting, guests arrive at an illumined open house party. The accompanying printout of the house in its last days shows the 114 year old Livingstone House ripped wide open by the forces of nature and the results or a poorly executed attempt to move the house in the 1990’s. Its sagging turret earned it the name “Slumpy” by the Detroit community of urban photographers.

The progress of the micropointillist acrylic painting of “Open House” with pictures of the various stages of its painting is blogged and available for viewing at

In its existence the Livingstone House encompassed many aspects of the Woodward and Martin Luther King over time. In its early days it was the gilded age home of a Detroit luminary and the first project designed by Albert Kahn who would go on to international fame and to become the most influential architect of his generation. As the city of Detroit grew rapidly at the dawn of the automobile age, the formerly exclusive Brush Park district declined into decay and abandonment. The Livingstone House, like many others around it, was converted into a multiple unit rooming house, then finally abandoned. In its sad closing days, its pathetic and sagging façade became an attraction to photographers, who dubbed it “Slumpy”, and a symbol of both the problems and possibilities a reviving Detroit offered. 

Today like the Intersection, much of Brush Park is reviving and many of its former mansions are being restored. Unfortunately “Slumpy” did not make the cut, but its memory will continue in hundreds of pictures on the internet and with the painting “Open House”.

Lowell Boileau: Fine Art Painter and Website Artist

Detroit artist Lowell Boileau is a self-learned painter and website artist.

Boileau is has been awarded three Michigan Creative Artist Grants, the Arts Midwest NEA Grant for painting and an Arts America International Grant. He has been a guest lecturer at the University of Michigan, Burg Giebichenstein - University of Art and Design in Halle, Germany, Wayne State University and Youngstown State University. He was a guest artist at the international art colony of Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart and the Literatur Werkstatt in Berlin. Boileau’s artwork has been profiled in Wired magazine, The New York Times, The Detroit Free Press, The Detroit News, Detroit Metro Times, Stuttgarter Zeitung and Stuttgarter Nachtrichten, City Arts Review, and Solidarity magazine.

In collaboration with fellow artist Stephen Goodfellow he helped develop the micropointillist painting technique whereby brightly colored and luminescent paintings are created using only the three primary colors of yellow, red and blue. The artists and their technique are presented in a 1983 documentary on their art and the micropointillism painting technique, Waterworks, produced by Urban Communications of Detroit. Boileau’s paintings and technique can be viewed online at

The arrival of the World Wide Web in 1993 provided a new ‘paint and canvas’ for Boileau and his creative efforts have increasingly turned in that direction. His major work, now in its tenth year, is the DetroitYES Project [], a 1500+ page community interactive website inspired by the transformation of Detroit from Industrial to Information Age city. DetroitYES formed the cyber-bridge from his urban landscape painting themes to his web art. With its core tour “The Fabulous Ruins of Detroit”, Detroit is shown in all its brutal yet magnificent beauty. Through DetroitYES’s large, active and informed discussion forum, the project asks ‘why’, ‘can it be fixed’ and ‘where are we going’. attracts over 3 million visitors per year who view over twenty million pages. The website was selected as a Yahoo Pick of the Year in 1998, twice selected as Detroit MetroTimes reader’s choice Best Detroit Website, as a Detroit Free Press Best Michigan Website and as Hour Magazine’s Best Detroit Website. It has been profiled in The New York Times, PBS, and Wired magazine. Boileau’s other major web art creations include [co-creator] and crowd sourced “The Lost Synagogues of Detroit” [].

Alana Bartol/Emily Linn

Intersections: A Collection of Street Sounds
Sound Installation
(Located in building entranceway)

A city that once thrived on the auto industry, Detroit has and continues to face many socio-economic issues tied to transportation and suburban sprawl. Woodward stretches 27 miles, from downtown Detroit through the suburbs of Highland Park, Ferndale, Pleasant Ridge, Royal Oak, Huntington Woods, Berkley, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Bloomfield Township and Pontiac. Similarly, Mack Ave and Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd stretch out from the heart of the city to its suburbs. For this sound installation we recorded street-level sounds at intersections along Woodward, Mack, and MLK during rush hour. We began recording at the point where the three streets intersect and moved outwards, mirroring the commute many suburbanites drive each day.

Rarely do we stop and focus on the street sounds to which we have become so inured. As you listen to this piece, it is our hope that you will reflect on the many cultural, social, and economic shifts that occur between Detroit and its suburbs, and the dominance of human technology and machinery in our urban environment.

Alana Bartol was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia but has spent most of her life in Windsor, Ontario. She completed a BFA in Visual Arts from the University of Windsor in 2004 and is currently completing her MFA in Sculpture at Wayne State University where she taught Special topics in Sculpture: Performance Art. Her work sensitizes the viewer to the natural and the artificial constructs of North American culture and society. She has developed several collaborative, community-building projects such as The Detroit-Windsor Journal Project; that illuminate the potential for transformation and positive change through co-operation and understanding.

Emily Linn
was born in Detroit, MI, where she currently resides. She received a BFA in photography and a BA in Arts and Ideas in the Humanities from the University of Michigan in 2000. She recently completed an MFA in photography from Wayne State University. She works in the Education Studio at the Detroit Institute of Arts. Her work explores aspects of memory through photography, video and installation. She and Alana Bartol have collaborated on several projects together.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Intersection Exhibition Essay

“Neighborhoods have life spans. They begin, evolve, mature and die. But while this evolution is displayed by the decline of its buildings, it seems that the lives of the inhabitants are the internal force which generates the decay. People, not buildings, are the heart of the matter.” – Will Eisner, from his Introduction to his graphic novel, “Dropsie Avenue.”

Since the trails made by Native American peoples gave way to Judge Woodward’s grand city scheme, this intersection has seen a lot of people pass through and constant change to its infrastructure. Massive homes of prominent Detroiters were replaced by tea rooms, music stores, and the like. A clothing warehouse would overtake the entire block, but even that was felled to make room for the current building, a fortress in stone and glass.

Now it’s our turn.

To the rich history of this intersection, we add our own contribution. In order to set the stage we want to establish our identity and location and engage the community. Brought together to learn about this site and one another, Intersection exhibition participants examine and offer a response to our literal intersection – its sights, sounds, history, the people that inhabit it, the architecture, anything that strikes them.

Rather than being a limitation, this narrowing of focus proves expansive. As Henry David Thoreau wrote in Walden, “a man can walk forever in an area of only a few square miles.” The modern mathematics of fractal geometry echoes Thoreau – the deeper we look the more we discover.

Thus despite being ostensibly about a single location, the exhibition is wildly diverse, reflecting the diversity of experience of the participating individuals. From a multitude of perspectives, the exploration of this single intersection becomes a microcosm of something much larger – Blake’s “world in a grain of sand” as it were. By looking intently inward, we’ve begun to look outward.

This site then, is both literal and conceptual intersection – a nerve center for the convergence of people, places, and ideas. It’s quite fertile terrain where ideas collide and new perspectives emerge. But this convergence doesn’t stop with the exhibition. No, this is a starting point, an opportunity to learn from one another by engaging in an ongoing dialogue at this intersection.

And by “engage,” we mean it in all senses of the word: it’s a promise, a commitment, it’s a means to get your attention and hold your interest, and it’s a signal to put things in motion. People bring life and energy to a place – together we send out roots here and let possibilities bloom. – Nick Sousanis, Director of Exhibitions

Detroit, Michigan. September 22, 2007