Wednesday, June 24, 2015

newly finished

Dr. Vince Murray, of Bagley Housing and Matrix Theater.
Gouache and collaged map of Bagley Housing in Southwest Detroit. 16 3/8 x 12 ½ in. Photographed at Stanton Park.

“One of the biggest mentors in my life has been my boss at Bagley Housing, Dr. Vincent Murray.”

Dr. Murray helped bring the community organization of Bagley Housing out of confusion in part by ousting 2 members of the board who also had ties to the nearby Ambassador Bridge. He believed those two individuals had sought positions on the board to keep the area disempowered for real estate interests. Shortly after their removal, the organization received grants to create new, affordable houses so people could relocate from places that did not have good housing. He has since retired and contributes as a board member of Matrix Theater and still believes that “every person matters.”

"3 Women Fight to Save Their Neighborhoods" AKA "3 Women, 3 Stories"

Rashida Tlaib is just one of the women I have met or heard about recently who is fighting to secure community benefits for her hometown of Southwest Detroit (through the Detroit Community Benefits Agreement, CBA). Some of the women have been doing this work for decades. The letters behind her form words from quotes by these women, starting with the past and ending with their most recent experiences in the foreground.


Resilience, Private Collection
This piece was created over the course of a year. It started out with a satellite view of the truck depot in Delray and an ink painting of a skyline. This was one of the first attempts I made at combining industrial imagery with portraiture. I left an opening for the portrait of a person, but I didn't know who to draw. Then I saw the movie Wasteland, about Vik Muniz's project in Jardim Gramacho, Brazil, the worlds largest landfill. I draw one of the women catadores (garbage pickers) and titled it Resilience as a hope for the future.