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.
Ian Swanson, artist
It could be that I related to the work on a base level, since I grew up with my father building kitchen cabinetry with formica in our garage. But as I got more involved with art I always returned to him [Artschwager]. He seemed to represent a fundamental difference in approach to contemporary artmaking from the other minimalists in the collection. Artists like Don Judd or Tony Smith seemed satisfied to reflect on formalities, but there was always a creeping and encoded mystery in Artschwager’s works that I’ve found continually inspiring.