Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2007 Artists in Detroit Previous Next
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Nyburgher
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Username: Nyburgher

Post Number: 99
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 1:31 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

OK, so after bugging everyone here. I will try to tell people why I am interested in places like Detroit.

I was an artist in NY and even though I eventually ended up selling enough work to make 35,000 in a good year- I could never seem to make enough to own a nice big studio space or even rent one with any security.

I was wondering if Detroit has made any attempts to convert old factories or warehouses into artist live work spaces or if anyone else in town has. The one stereotype about artists is mostly true. We are broke and always interested in cheap places where we might be wanted.

Any help would be appreciated. I am now fairly rooted in Pittsburgh where i have started an art gallery. But, i am always interested in what is going on.
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Charlottepaul
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Username: Charlottepaul

Post Number: 666
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 1:41 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I don't know that the city government itself ever has done so. What does make Detroit a great place for artists however, is that there are plenty of places like what you mentioned. Great big old warehouses that can basically be converted into any use. Unfortunately (as you probably know) once the yuppie-trendy folks find these places too, the rent can go up and drive out the artists. This has happened many times over in Detroit.
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Bulletmagnet
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Username: Bulletmagnet

Post Number: 103
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 2:58 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Nyburgher, indeed artists have converted old where houses into studios in Detroit. A good start: Russell Industrial Center http://www.modeldmedia.com/fea tures/russell53.aspx. You may wish to contact Mark Arminski. Hope this helps, as my wife is a hungry artist as well.
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Apbest
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Username: Apbest

Post Number: 466
Registered: 03-2006
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 3:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Eastern Market has some true live-work spaces I believe

hamtramck has some too
http://modeldmedia.com/develop mentnews/vetpark36.aspx
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Nyburgher
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Username: Nyburgher

Post Number: 100
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 4:48 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I am pretty stuck here at this point. But I would like to check things out. I really like the Detroit arts Blog that i came across.

Anyway, the yuppies are pushing artists out of NY and it's mostly over. Philly has a big trend towards conversions, but developers grab all the good stuff at least in the semi safe places.

This is a huge potential market for Detroit. Artists are basically manufacturers, but broke ones and they need a lot of the same stuff. A lot of them also have contracting skills so they can do gradual rehabs.

For the right space at the right price, a lot of artists would move anywhere. Leipzig, Germany which was a fellow "shrinking city" is attracting all kinds of stuff. Galleries are also mobil because many rely on the internet and the art fairs to get by. Veterans of the real estate wars in NY have lived in some pretty rough places. also the art world has a lot of people who have roots in the Detroit area.
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Nyburgher
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Username: Nyburgher

Post Number: 101
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 5:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Where would be the best place to just look at images of buildings. both interior and exteriors. There are some good ones on this site.

The Russell industrial Center looks like exactly the kind of thing, that interests me. It doesn't have to be a perfect or architecturally great building. We know that people will kick you out of those.
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Nyburgher
Member
Username: Nyburgher

Post Number: 102
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 5:05 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

To be honest, I am cool with the suburban folks staying out of Detroit if they don't like it. There are a huge number of people who love cities like artists who are being priced out of them and I think that is your core market.
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Leoqueen
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Username: Leoqueen

Post Number: 1521
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Sunday, March 11, 2007 - 7:23 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Nyburgher, my friends and I who are artists have been in just about every kind of space you can think of. Two of the best studios I ever had when I was a young [20's] artist were three-bedroom flats that I lived alone in. My bedroom was where I 'lived', the rest was work space that really benefited from the division that the other two bedrooms plus the living, dining and kitchen areas made. I made my own encaustic paints in the kitchen. As far as I know, there are still living/working situations like this all over the place, though you might have to contend with landlords who need some 'education' about art.

My next two studios, including the one I currently have, were/are both large loft situations in buildings in Downtown Detroit. I was in the first one for 10 years, and am currently working on my 8th year in this one. My current one is in a building designed and maintained for artists only, and the lofts are made for living and working. It is a very clean space, with common areas [lobby, bathrooms on each floor] looked after by maintenance.

Artists have always had to be flexible about their working spaces, in reference to being forced out by gentrification. Someone a long time ago said, "Artists make Real Estate". This is true in downtown Detroit, just as it was in NY Soho. One of my art teachers advised us a long time ago to always look for the next space, even when moving in to a current one. He had what we called the "dream space", but recieved an eviction notice because the landlord had sold the building. We told him he should fight, but he told us that it was time to move on.

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