Welcome to A Day for Detroit. All day long, Art F City and 21 other art blogs will be posting images from the Detroit Institute of Arts’ invaluable art collection. There are fantastic works to be found in their holdings, which, unfortunately, face the threat of being sold off to cover the city of Detroit’s debts. This would be an irreparable loss for those who’ve lived and worked in close proximity to DIA—so we thought we’d focus on them, too.
For Art F City’s contribution to A Day for Detroit, we asked a robust swath of art worlders who have lived or are currently living in Detroit about their favorite works in the DIA’s collection. Their images and commentary will appear on the blog throughout the day.
If you like these images and want to support DIA, share them with your friends. If you live in Michigan, make sure your elected officials know that, in the words of Tyler Green, “you don’t support a fire sale of the city’s future.” You can also become a member of the Detroit Institute of Arts.
Sandra Schemske, Art Collection Coordinator, College of Fine Performing and Communication Arts, Wayne State University
This picture was part of the 1995 ‘Interventions’ exhibition at the DIA in which Detroit area artists ‘intervened’ with other objects in the museum’s galleries. William’s painting was installed in the Dutch galleries at the museum, where this portrait of a perpetrator of hate crimes against African Americans stood as an historic reminder that though the slave trade of the 17th century contributed to wealth of the Dutch nation, it was certainly not apparent in their refined and genteel images of the time.
The painting itself reveals the hidden evil behind the façade. It is a remarkable picture by one of American’s most provocative and talented artists.