Detroit Institute of Arts Announces Eastpointe Public Art Mural is Underway

Project is part of the museum’s Partners in Public Art Program (PIPA) and is being painted by a local Macomb County Artist.

August 7, 2020 (Detroit) -The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), in partnership with the Eastpointe Arts and Cultural Diversity Commission, today announced the latest Partners in Public Art (PIPA) project at the Eastpointe Community Credit Union. The outer wall of the credit union is within an outdoor space called the Children's Garden, located at 22544 Gratiot Ave. in Eastpointe.

DIA’s PIPA program aims to foster collaboration between local communities and the museum and to strengthen and celebrate these communities through art. Each project is created in partnership with the community, the DIA, and a local artist. The museum has worked with seven communities to create mural and sculpture projects over the past few years.

For each project, the museum’s studio staff works with community partners to create and disseminate a survey to local residents to garner input and ideas that can be incorporated into the final piece.

In Eastpointe, Macomb County artist Wendy Popko—who has created many murals throughout the county—was selected as the lead artist. Wendy translated ideas from the feedback survey to create a composition called the Rainbow Maker, which she has begun painting.

Popko shared some thoughts on her design, "In this image, you will find musical instruments. Even the sun is the negative space to a piano (the keys along the bottom give a hint).

The gears are diverse patterns, representing some of the different cultures who have settled in this community. As the rainbow ribbon rolls around each gear, another layer of color is added to complete the rainbow -completing the diversity of the community."

“This mural inspires hope during a time of great stress in our community and world,” said Alysa Diebolt, Chair of the Arts & Cultural Diversity Commission.

“The colors are vibrant and the design is diverse - just like Eastpointe.”

“We are excited to continue working with the local communities to help create these amazing works of public art,” said DIA Director Salvador Salort-Pons. “Communities like Eastpointe provide so much to the museum, so it feels only fitting that we are able to collaborate on community art projects that strive to strengthen a sense of community through art.”
The Eastpointe project is expected to be completed by mid-October.

Partners in Public Art (PIPA)

The Eastpointe project is the first new project of 2020 due to the unprecedented global pandemic, but the museum has plans to continue to expand PIPA and work with additional Macomb, Oakland and Wayne County communities to create public works of art.

PIPA works with communities to co-create community-driven, highly visible public works of art. The purpose of the program is to help people explore, express, and build a stronger sense of community through a communal art experience.

Each project begins with residents and business owners in the community taking part in a survey to assess interest and preferences for a public art project. The results of the survey are incorporated into the final design.

The PIPA program is funded as a part of the tri-county millage.

Residents are also reminded that admission to the Detroit Institute of Arts is always free to residents of Macomb, Oakland and Wayne Counties.

The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), one of the premier art museums in the United States, is home to more than 60,000 works that comprise a multicultural survey of human creativity from ancient times through the 21st century. From the first Van Gogh painting to enter a U.S. museum (Self-Portrait, 1887), to Diego Rivera's world-renowned Detroit Industry murals (1932–33), the DIA’s collection is known for its quality, range and depth. The DIA’s mission is to create opportunities for all visitors to find personal meaning in art.

Programs are made possible with support from residents of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties.