The Huron River and those communities that it touches, like Dexter, are gaining much prominence this year, such as inclusion in the Detroit Institute of Arts Inside|Out program. As a result of this, Dexter’s portion of the trail now has an art installation at the Dexter District Library.
Earlier this year the Huron River, which goes through Dexter, Milford, Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, and Flat Rock, was named a National Water Trail by the National Park Service. It is one of only 18 such trails in the entire country.
HRWC officials are calling inclusion in this program “a celebration” of receiving this distinction from the NPS.
DIA spokesperson Jillian Reese said Friday that she was excited to have the Huron River included in the art institute’s program, which has been running for six years now. During this time nearly 100 communities throughout Michigan have received a DIA art installation.
“Our goal is to bring the DIA’s world class collection outside of the walls of the museum into other people’s communities,” Reese said. HRWC officials and Reese spoke of the concept of turning these trails and other outdoor features into economic drivers in local economies, which is a concept that those who advocate for the arts are familiar with.
“Having access to art and art in public spaces is necessary for people to have a high quality of life,” Reese said. “Oftentimes we view art as sort of a luxury, when you have art in public spaces and people have access to it, that’s a great rallying point to bring people together, so I think that if you identify community assets and resources is has the opportunity to ‘activate’ that space.”
The Inside|Out program is made possible by the Knight Foundation, which gave the DIA a $2 million grant to fund this endeavor. Dexter and the other Huron River communities are part of a wave of outgrowth and expansion of the program’s footprint from it’s debut years ago.
“Where possible, the works are clustered within walking or biking distance of each other in a grand, open air gallery. In Dexter, this cluster focuses attention toward the Mill Creek branch of the Huron River,” HRWC officials said in a release, which detailed the works of art that are installed at each site in Dexter:
Outdoor Wall of the Dexter District Library — Bude Sands at Sunset by John Randall Brett
Monument Park — View of Le Crotoy by Georges Seurat
Mill Creek Park — Boy with Plaid Scarf by Robert Cozad Henri
Dexter Art Gardens
The City of Dexter’s Arts, Culture, and Heritage Committee have sponsored the commission and installation of four new temporary sculptures throughout the community. The sculptures will be installed between the 1st and the 15th of August and will remain on display through August of 2016. These sculptures will also have complimentary garden displays designed by local garden enthusiasts to enhance the artwork.
The art will be on display in the following locations:
Between the Dexter District Library and the Dexter Farmer’s Market — Steel in Bloom by Shannon Sovia
Outside of LaFontaine Chevrolet — Mountain Goat by James Havens
Mill Creek Park Plaza Circle located at Main St. and Jeffords — Flight on the Plains by Joe Krajkiewcz
Walkway of Mill Creek Park — Balancing Act by Pamela Reithmeier
For more information on these programs, please contact Justin Breyer, Assistant to the City Manager at Jbreyer@DexterMI.gov or by phone at 734-426-8303 x 17.