Blog: Monica Bowman

Any way you cast it, the beauty of art is its ability to project intrigue onto, say, an overturned refrigerator. This week Monica Bowman, founder and director of The Butcher's Daughter gallery, opens a window onto the relevance of contemporary art for Detroit communities.

Post 3 - INFRASTRUCTURE: You, Me, and Them

Last blog I talked about how buying art is an investment in yourself and your community. Central to the theme of this entry is to further explain how other local organizations fit into the landscape of art in Detroit. The networks and resources available in Michigan rival many world-class cities and offer benefits not available in other cities. Finally, a positive perspective on housing prices in Michigan!
Seriously though, I am often asked in conversation and interviews about the gallery why I choose to return to Detroit after living in New York. This question, although expected, admittedly triggers a strange defensiveness inside me. In the old days this may have been called "Hometown Pride" or a by-product of Midwestern regionalism. The truth is, I know what Detroit has to offer and I know the quality of people who live here.

Did you know…
… that since 2006, Art Detroit Now has been coordinating Metro Detroit galleries and organizing synchronized events for a week each summer? In 2009, over 60 galleries participated by hosting gallery talks, openings, and special events. This year the focus is on public sculpture and urban landscape.
Russell Industrial Center (a former automotive stamping plant, circa 1915) boasts over 2.2 million square feet of enclosed space and is home to numerous artist-run gallery and studio spaces such as CAVE, MONA, or ORG?
… internationally recognized art activism is alive in Detroit in concepts such as the Ice House and Power House?

This blog is dedicated to the institutions that have come before me and continue to offer vital services to residents and visitors to the city. Perhaps the next time you have a guest in town, you'll access the following cursory list as a guide to cultural tourism in our community as it relates to contemporary art.

Non-Profit Institutions:
Detroit Institute of Arts - Founded in 1885, the DIA is the fifth-largest fine art museum in the nation, dedicated to creating "experiences that help each visitor find personal meaning in art" and home to Rivera Court.
Detroit Artist Market (DAM) - DAM has been dedicated to the providing a sustainable platform for the exhibition and sale of local artists' work for over 75 years.
The Heidelberg Project - One of Detroit's original urban art landscapes. 
Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD) - Opened in 2006, the mission concerns itself with presenting "art at the forefront of contemporary culture. As a non-collecting institution, MOCAD is responsive to the cultural content of our time, fueling crucial dialogue, collaboration, and public engagement."

Local universities with art programs and galleries:

College for Creative Studies and Center Galleries
Cranbrook and Cranbrook Art Museum 
Oakland University and the OU Art Gallery
Wayne State University and the Elaine L. Jacob Gallery

Notable Ferndale fine art galleries:
The Butcher's Daughter
22747 Woodward Avenue, Suite 201
Lemberg Gallery
23241 Woodward Avenue
Susanne Hilberry Gallery

700 Livernois