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Belle Isle Public Art Exhibit | No. 6 - 6/23 - 6/29

Belle Isle Public Art Exhibit | No. 6

Showing June 23rd through June 29th

Curated by Andrew Thompson, Nina Marcus-Kurlonko, Alice Schneider, and Louis Casinelli


Each Summer | Belle Isle Park | 7 Days of Public Art


For the past three summers, Access Arts Detroit has delivered public art exhibits at Belle Isle Park. From June 23-29, Exhibit No. 6 will kick-off with the opening reception taking place the 23rd from 2PM-7PM. Public art projects will draw viewers to explore the park's diverse environments. This year's exhibition includes a variety of work that connects with Belle Isle's landscapes. From nuanced and subtle interventions to live performances, this year's exhibit provokes and cajoles collaboration with the park's visitors, landmarks, infrastructure, and varied settings.


$350 Stipends | For 11 Projects  | Creative Investments in Public Space


Every year has gotten better and 2012 is no exception. In years past, it was by the spirit of artists who funded projects and volunteers who gave their time and effort. In 2011, we started providing $150 stipends to artists for their materials and labor, a rarity for artists. This year, after receiving the most amount of submissions to date, we have upped the ante to $350 per selected project, including 2 from out of state. This would not happen without the support of Supino Pizzeria, who's fundraiser Supino Loves the Arts plays a major funding element for the exhibit. (Ask Dave Mancini how much sleep he got that week. Actually, don't remind him!) Green Living Science also sponsors the exhibit, with additional financial support from Recycle Here's BEE Green Fund. We are also crowdsourcing (starting Friday June 15th) on to help fortify the future of the exhibit.


What else is new this year? Walking tours from curators, three art panels including artists from the exhibit and representatives from City of Detroit, Recycle Here!, AIGA Detroit, Detroit Parks Coalition, and landscape designers. Also new this year is the inclusion of Skidmore Studio's project Free Art Friday, who will be creating a special Saturday Belle Isle edition of the scavenger art hunting, and Art Ride, our bike tour of the exhibit.



  3,000 Viewers Per Exhibit | 5 Exhibits | Equals Many Happy People


Access Arts, the visual arts and education program of Forward Arts, works hard with the City of Detroit, and many others, to bring the work of local and national contemporary artists to the public at Belle Isle. Special thank you to the City of Detroit's Recreation Department and the Belle Isle Conservancy for support. Also thank you to AIGA Detroit, Detroit Parks Coalition, Recycle Here!, Skidmore Studio's Free Art Friday, and





4 Years Later  | Over 50 Artists  | Creating a Total of 82 Temporary Art Works


Founded by Louis Casinelli in 2008, Access Arts Detroit's first project was the islands' first open-air public art exhibition at Belle Isle. Along the way we've produced 5 exhibits, reached 15,000 people, held three 10 week youth art labs, participated in Art Detroit Now, put up some good numbers (see above in bold!), and for the first time will re-install a piece from last year's exhibit by an out of state artist who moved to Detroit after the exhibit. The piece, Where Do We Draw the Lines? by Fatima Hirji, will stay up all summer.


Since it's outset, Access Arts' focus was to create public art opportunities by engaging and educating Detroit; it's communities, and looking beyond implied boundaries. Each exhibition, Access develops more sustainable and holistic programming, and has helped lay the groundwork for art in Detroit's public spaces.


Consisting of some of the best talent the Detroit art scene has, the 2012 Belle Isle Curatorial Committee consists of Andrew Thompson (Artist and Teacher at U of M, CCS and Paint Creek Center), Nina Marcus-Kurlonko (Red Bull House of Art and Pop-Up Detroit), Alice Schneider, (Pewabic Pottery) and Festival Director Louis Casinelli (Artist, Founder and Director of Access Arts).


Love the Arts | Love Belle Isle | And Support the Belle Isle Public Art Exhibit


Every year, more organizations, local businesses and communities have come on board to help make the exhibit happen. Everybody believes in the potential of the island. Building upon our past successes, Forward Arts and it's programs will continue to provide creative and culturally significant elements to the island park through Access Arts and the Belle Isle Public Art Exhibit. Join us as we continue to build something great for our city.       




Host Site: Our host site this year, where you'll find art maps to the installations will be once again on the corner of Loiter Way in front of the Belle Isle Aquarium and Conservatory. To download an exhibit art map or any further information, please visit


6th Belle Isle Public Art Exhibit Artists

Chocolate Cake Design Collective, Angeles Cossio, Melissa Vogel-Woods, Clare Fox, Sean Hages, Halima Cassells, Carleton Gholz, James Cornish & Lisa LaMarre, Stephanie & Julie Howells, Ginger Chase, and Chido Johnson. For artists previews please visit


Art Panels, All Panels Start at 6PM

Thursday, June 21st at the tent in front of the Belle Isle Park Office (next to aquarium). Panelists include Matt Naimi (Recycle Here!), Keith Flournoy (Belle Isle Park Manager), Alex Harvilla (AIGA Detroit), Joe Rashid (Detroit Park Coalition) Fai Foen (Landscape Designer) and Marcia Deimart Landscape Designer).


Tuesday, June 26th at the tent in front of the Belle Isle Park Office (next to aquarium). Panelists include Belle Isle artists Sean Hages, Angeles Cossio, Melissa Vogel-Woods, Carleton Gholz, Chocolate Cake Collective, and Halimma Cassells.


Thursday June 28th at the Flynn Pavilion, including Chido Johnson, Ginger Chase, James Cornish, Clare Fox, Stephanie and Julie Howells. Be prepared to get in boats!



Exhibit Tours

Walking: This year we made an effort to scale down on the number of places/areas viewers have to go to see all of the installations. Guided walking tours will leave the host site at 2:30, 3:30 and 4:30.


Art Ride, Belle Isle Edition: Something new this year is our bike tour of the exhibit, Art Ride. The tour will take off from our host site at 3:30 to see all of the exhibit (some walking will be done).


Wheelhouse Detroit: Jump on this Belle Isle tour that will include stops along the exhibit!  For more info, visit


On Your Own: Download a map of the exhibit, get some friends together and see the exhibit on your own. The exhibit will be up until June 29th.


Free Art Friday Detroit (FAFDET) is a free art scavenger hunt that was initiated in Detroit by Skidmore Studio in 2011. An artist creates a custom piece of art – anything from a painting to a screenprint to a sculpture. They then write their Twitter handle and the hashtag #FAFDET as well as "Facebook: Free Art Friday Detroit" on the back of the piece. They may even include a note offering more instructions. Then they hide their art somewhere in the city. The artist posts a photo clue of the drop spot to the FAFDET Facebook page and tweets the same clue with hashtag #FAFDET. Anyone who finds it is free to take the artwork home. We just ask that they tweet or post a photo with hashtag letting us know it has found a good home. Twitter:



Access Arts is the visual arts and education program of Forward Arts, focused on the intersection of art, arts education and public spaces in the city of Detroit.  To achieve our mission, we host public art exhibitions at Belle Isle and Scripps Parks with contemporary public artists, teach core values of arts practice to youth in Detroit and work within the communities that call Detroit home. For more on Forward Arts, visit


For more information, please visit