The Heidelberg Project, Detroit


(From Detroit’s Sacred Places Flickr Group)

Thank you for posting this image of The Heidelberg Project – it is a unique site to Detroit, and I hope to see more of this type of imagery in the competition. I once read a quote by THP’s creator Tyree Guyton that this project is not simply art but more “like medicine. You can’t heal the land until you heal the minds of the people.” Its tough to communicate the aesthetic, social, and cultural complexities/impact of this site in just one picture, and there are many interesting photographs of THP on

With available light as well as the glimpse of the house roofline at the lower right and the totem-like structure, actually a tree on the left, you have carefully composed visual information from this site in a unique way expressing its “essence”, as Kenro Izu would say. You give the viewer just enough information to discern the subject – at least if you know Detroit well, – and perhaps to viewers who are not familiar with the city, the photograph may provoke further investigation. So the picture stands out from some of the others in this respect.

For those individuals out there who may not know about it ,The Heidelberg Project is a Detroit treasure conceived by artist Tyree Guyton. It began a little over twenty years ago when Guyton turned an abandoned crack house in his neighborhood on Heidelberg Street (on Detroit’s east side) into a public art installation. Check out their website for maps and news about it at FYI – the latest news on The Heidelberg Project – it is one of 15 projects selected to represent the U.S. in the 2008 Biennale Architecture exhibition Sept. 14 through Nov. 23 in Venice, Italy.


2 Responses to “The Heidelberg Project, Detroit”

  1. 1 ehanley July 31, 2008 at 1:45 am

    very, very nice picture.

  2. 2 Meghin Gani August 13, 2008 at 4:14 pm

    Excellent picture; it intrigues me to want to visit the site to see what it is all about. Well done!

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© The Detroit Institute of Arts and Detroit's Sacred Places, 2008-2009. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the Detroit Institute of Arts and Detroit's Sacred Places with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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