Art

275. Arts and Scraps – September 16, 2017 – Detroit, MI

ArtandScraps5ArtandScraps1ArtandScraps2ArtandScraps4Arts and Scraps is a thrift store, but it’s an art-products-based thrift store, which to me makes it the coolest thrift store on the planet.

The Detroit-based shop/charitable organization geared toward encouraging childhood creativity among low-income populations had been on my mind for months – since late winter/early spring, when I cleaned out the closet in my home office and gathered up buttons, crayons, yarn, bits of fabric, safety pins, and other craft-related detritus, bagged them, and threw them in the trunk of my car with the intention of going there and making a donation. Finally I made it over there on a sunny Saturday afternoon in mid-September.

As instructed on Arts and Scraps’ website, I parked near the side delivery door where donations can be dropped off, hauled my bag of offerings out of my car, and knocked. A friendly older woman answered, thanked me for my donation, and asked if I wanted to have a look around. I hadn’t planned on doing that, but I was like sure, why not? So she let me through the back area to the front of the shop.

OK, let me say, when I walked through that shop, I was like, WOW! I brimmed with excitement as I took in the fabric room with its shelves of colorful offerings and the main shop area with its bins and bins of every crafting material you could ever think of: buttons, pipe cleaners, cardboard, yarn, wallpaper sample books, spools of thread – even metal cookie tins in all shapes and sizes. And it was all there for super-cheap prices, such as a dollar for four spools of thread. A dollar!

This place was heaven to the 10-year-old craft-happy kid inside of me. It had me fantasizing about using the shop contents to craft the kind of large-scale modern art installation made from everyday materials that I adore; if inspiration hit me someday, I would know exactly where to go. Give me five baby-food jars, some embroidery thread, a wallpaper sample book, and those wine corks – stat! I’ve got creating to do!

So if you’ve got a creative project you’re looking to dive into, consider skipping those pricey national-chain craft stores and hitting Arts and Scraps for your supplies instead. You’ll save money and support a good cause – a total win-win in my (scrap)book. 🙂

If you are interested in donating supplies to Arts and Scraps, here’s the link to the page on its site that gives donation-material guidelines: www.artsandscraps.org/get-involved/individuals/save-materials-from-home. Financial donations can be made through the site, as well.

6135 Harper Ave.

Detroit, MI 48224

http://www.artsandscraps.org/

Advertisements

129. The Heidelburg Project – June 20, 2015 – Detroit, MI

20150620_183953

20150620_183938

20150620_18384920150620_184023

20150620_184221

Until my recent (well, not so recent anymore – it was almost a month ago!) Detroit Day that I’ve been chronicling, I’m pretty sure I was the only person my ripe old age of 30 who had lived her whole life in the proximity of Detroit and had not been through the Heidelburg Project. Out on the other side of the experience, I can heartily attest that it was everything I thought it would be and more!

For those unfamiliar with it, the Heidelburg Project is an urban art installation – referred to as an “outdoor community art environment” on its website – on Heidelburg Street in Detroit. Starting in 1986 (I had no idea it went back that far until researching it!), local artist Tyree Guyton started to transform this heavily blighted area of his community through the raw, beautifying power of art, using his trademark colorful polka dots and found and recycled objects primarily from the Detroit area and recruiting the help of family members and neighborhood kids. And look at how f@cking amazing it is! I just love contemporary art and art using found objects; I get really excited about it, so I was pretty impassioned when my friend was driving me through the Heidelburg Project, ohh-ing and ahh-ing and getting really upset recalling how some of it has been destroyed by ignorant idiots – but then excited to see that they have worked on rebuilding it. A colorful kaleidoscope of emotions – that’s what the best art brings out in us.

Today, the Heidelburg Project is more than an inspiring and thought-provoking urban art installation – it’s a movement that includes youth art workshops and gallery exhibitions by other artists. If you’re as passionate about such creative, community-focused work as I am, you can also support the cause through a donation via the below website.

3600 Heidelberg St.

Detroit MI, 48207

www.heidelberg.org

119. Art Birmingham – May 9, 2015 – Birmingham, MI

20150509_135052

Here’s something that’s worth checking out when it comes around again next year: Art Birmingham, an awesome little art fair held in Shain Park near downtown Birmingham. It’s like Arts Beats and Eats without the crushing crowds – and the beats (well, there was one guy playing what looked like a xylophone), and nowhere near as extensive the variety of eats (though there was some delicious kettle corn). Ok, so maybe it isn’t too comparable to Arts Beats and Eats, but this year’s lineup showcased an impressive variety of artists, and while I couldn’t quite afford most of the gorgeous wares being offered there, it was free and very lovely to window-shop. And I got my first sunburn of the season! That’s not exactly something to be proud of, but it just feels phenomenal to finally be here at this wonderful time of year in Michigan where we are able to experience sunburn.

In Shain Park

151 Martin St.

Birmingham, MI 48009

http://bbartcenter.org/bbac/art-birmingham/

69. Urban Pearl – October 6, 2016 – Northville, MI

20141019_123456

This is a super-cute shop featuring the work of Michigan artists – hand-crafted greeting cards, candles, t-shirts, beautiful pottery ware, Detroit-themed artwork, and more. I took pictures, but then the owner told me pictures aren’t allowed; the artists are worried about people taking them with the intent of copying their work. So I can show you a picture of the lovely four-pack of Michigan-themed notecards that I got, instead.

120 E. Main St.
Northville, MI

http://theurbanpearlgallery.com

58. Creative Arts Studio – September 8, 2014 – Royal Oak, MI

20140908_182701

It was so relaxing to go to this place Monday evening and spend a few hours just talking to a friend and painting a piece of pottery. I love activities that access the right side of my brain, because I can feel how such processes are much more intuitive and for me, therapeutic after a long day of having to use the left (analytical) side.

Creative Arts Studio offers much more than just painting of preformed pottery. It also has pottery wheels where you can form your own, glass fusing, jewelry making, canvas painting, and more.

114 W. 4th St., Royal Oak, MI 48067

www.creativeartsstudios.com