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 “The Lily Pond,” by Charles Harry Eaton, is one of four reproductions from the Detroit Institute of Arts that will be displayed around Madison Heights this summer and fall as part of the DIA’s Inside/Out program. This piece will be displayed at Rosie’s Park.

“The Lily Pond,” by Charles Harry Eaton, is one of four reproductions from the Detroit Institute of Arts that will be displayed around Madison Heights this summer and fall as part of the DIA’s Inside/Out program. This piece will be displayed at Rosie’s Park.

Photo provided by the city of Madison Heights


DIA Inside|Out exhibits coming to Madison Heights

City’s second outdoor mural also in early planning stages

By: Andy Kozlowski | Madison - Park News | Published February 21, 2020

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MADISON HEIGHTS — Since 2010, the Detroit Institute of Arts’ Inside|Out program has been visiting communities across metro Detroit, fostering appreciation for the arts by installing temporary exhibits at key locations. Now, Madison Heights has been approved to display four pieces of art from June through October.

The artwork includes “Portrait of a Collagist,” by Benny Andrews, at the Madison Heights Public Library; “Movement #27,” by Kwei Owusu-Ankomah, at Civic Center Park on the northeast side of the shelter building; “The Lily Pond,” by Charles Harry Eaton, at Rosie’s Park near the BMX trail; and “Flowers in a Glass Vase,” by Rachel Ruysch, at Woodpile BBQ.

The art itself was selected by the DIA, following the city’s request that the works represent a variety of genres to expose residents to different styles. They are framed, full-size reproductions of works from the DIA’s permanent collection, produced at the museum’s expense, using light and weatherproof materials.

The collaboration came about when Amanda Harrison Keighley, the DIA’s community engagement manager for Oakland County, met with Madison Heights Arts Board Chair Kirstin Bianchi and the board’s secretary, Amy Misczak.

“We are very excited to participate in the DIA’s Inside|Out  program and showcase art in our city and neighboring communities, and the Arts Board hopes this will just be the beginning of the city of Madison Heights’ relationship with the DIA,” Misczak wrote in a letter to the City Council.

The Arts Board plans to work closely with the DIA to create programming that will draw attention to the exhibits, such as bus tours, docent presentations, and a DIA craft project at the city’s Pre-Fourth of July Festival in the Park. The city also intends to collaborate with Hazel Park and other participating communities to increase overall awareness of the 2020 Inside|Out program.

Madison Heights City Councilman Mark Bliss said that access to art enhances quality of life.

“It makes our community a better place to live, and the Inside|Out program will allow our residents to experience world-class art in a new way,” Bliss said. “This program is an excellent addition to our city, and I’m so thankful for Chairwoman Kirstin Bianchi and the Arts Board who worked so hard to make this happen. I’m personally looking forward to taking my kids to see each of these reproductions.”

The Arts Board also recently announced another major initiative in the form of the city’s second outdoor mural project. The first mural, titled “Power of Imagination,” was painted by local artist Jennifer Ramirez on the four walls of the shelter building at the foot of the hill at Civic Center Park. This next mural is planned to be on the concessions building at Rosie’s Park.

The board intends to publish a call to artists soliciting artwork and pricing for a mural, to be funded entirely with money raised by the board for this project. No city funds will be spent.

The tentative deadline for muralists to submit their proposals is March 31. The board will then publicize its recommended artist in a report to council by April 27, and authorize commencement of the mural in late spring or early summer.   

“We are excited to launch our second mural project in the city, and it is our hope to fund additional murals on city-owned property,” wrote Misczak in her letter to the council. “The board is still open to facilitating murals on private property by introducing artists to property owners and initiating the conversation.”

Added Bliss: “This mural will serve to inspire parkgoers of all ages, and is yet another example both of the importance of bringing art to the community, as well as the incredible work that the volunteers on our Arts Board are doing in service to the city.”

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