Images of Detroit

John Haber
in New York City

The Detroit Institute of Arts: A Visual Tour

Let me share with you selected additional images from Detroit and the Detroit Institute of Arts, to accompany a full report on my visit. Enjoy!

Four empty spaces

You cannot see it here, but the landmark Wayne County Building has a for-lease sign out front. The abandoned factory off Grand River Avenue was across the street from my hotel. Of course, Detroit's Museum of Contemporary Art is not always empty, and its street art spells "Detroit."

Midtown South
Midtown South

Wayne County Building
Wayne County Building

Detroit MOCA
Detroit MOCA

Grand River Avenue
Grand River Avenue

Three Detroit interiors

That marvelous bookstore is a meticulously organized four-story building west of downtown.

Guardian Building
Guardian Building

Guardian Building
Guardian Building

John King Bookstore
John King Bookstore

Three smart characters

van Gogh has another surprising echo in sunflowers by Emil Nolde.

Andre Derain
André Derain (1925)

Paul Gauguin
Paul Gauguin (c. 1893)

Vincent van Gogh
Vincent van Gogh (1887)

Four frank faces

I like to think that the lumpiness of the Spanish portrait is audacity, but it is probably a flaw in workshop execution.

Flemish Artist
Flemish Artist (c. 1565)

Max Beckmann
Max Beckmann (1945)

Salvator Rosa
Salvator Rosa (c. 1655)

after Diego Velazquez
after Diego Velázquez (c. 1630)

Three stately women

Bronzino probably had workshop assistance with the child and background.

Fra Angelico
Fra Angelico (c. 1450)

Giovanni Bellini
Giovanni Bellini (1509)

Bronzino (c. 1550)

Three uppity women

Although the Titian is very late in his career, when he had attained a remarkable freedom in his shadows, much the blurriness here is my fault. Both he and Artemisia have painted Judith with the head of Holofernes.

Artemisia Gentileschi
Artemisia Gentileschi (c. 1625)

Orazio Gentileschi
Orazio Gentileschi (c. 1612)

Titian (c. 1570)

Three tapestries

Pindell and Gilliam are examples of the extraordinary emphasis on African American art, including four distinct rooms for it in the contemporary wing. Believe it or not, Sheeler titled his composition "Home Sweet Home."

Howardena Pindell
Howardena Pindell (1988)

Sam Gilliam
Sam Gilliam (1973)

Charles Sheeler
Charles Sheeler (1931)

Four pillars of light

McGee, too, appears with African American contemporary art. Besides La Farge's large stained glass, the American wing devotes considerable space to period rooms and decorative arts. Church has the central partition in an otherwise unwieldy room for the Hudson River School. Another wonderful point of contrast there is the gruff solidity of a rocky landscape by John Frederick Kensett.

Frederic Edwin Church
Frederic Edwin Church (1862)

John La Farge
John La Farge (1890)

Charles McGee
Charles McGee (c. 1972)

Barnett Newman
Barnett Newman (1970)

And of course . . .

I should be remiss in not letting you see the two other key works that I have highlighted in my report, both images courtesy of the museum. Oh, and, my titles aside, Detroit's collection includes a maker of actual Renaissance tapestries in Pieter Coecke van Aelst.

Caravaggio (c. 1598)

Pieter Bruegel the Elder
Pieter Bruegel the Elder (1566)

BACK to John's arts home page

I visited the Detroit Institute of Arts in late August 2014, and unless otherwise stated the photos are mine. A full review will tell you all about the museum and my visit.


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