On a recent morning, I parked my car in the Wayne State parking lot
on the site of the former Vernor's Plant. The morning sun was just
beginning to break through an early morning mist. As I looked toward
downtown Detroit, there was the Whitney mansion and its Victorian
chimneys and cupolas, the Willis Power Plant topped with three enormous
stacks, and a magnificent water tower, all joined in one continuous
silhouette and bathed in golden light. The sight took my breath away.
I am constantly surprised by the beauty of the images I find every
day in Detroit.
Detroit's unique configuration, with all of the main streets fanning
out like spokes on a wheel, brings an ever-changing view for anyone
moving slowly through its streets. The constantly shifting, kaleidoscopic
view of architectural oddities and wonders provides me with a never-ending
visual feast and endless subject matter for my paintings and drawings.
I never tire of exploring Detroit's neighborhoods. From humble frame
homes crowded together on narrow streets to elegant Victorian mansions
on broad boulevards, Detroit's architecture reminds me constantly
of its rich social history.
Utility poles and water towers, railroad crossing signals, billboards,
bridges, and massive old buildings against gray winter skies are powerful
abstract shapes repeated in endless variations and patterns.
It is so rewarding to know that many other artists share my love
of this city. Each of us creates a unique vision of Detroit through
our work. I believe that we are all mindful that the city's "renaissance"
is likely to result in the disappearance of many of its beautiful
forms. Together, we create a record of love.
I grew up in Toledo, Ohio. In 1961, after receiving a BA in Political
Science from Marquette University in Milwaukee, I moved to Detroit
and have lived in the city ever since. In 1998, I completed a Master
of Fine Arts degree at Wayne State University. My studio is located
in the Pioneer Building, a converted factory building in mid-town
Detroit. Through the years, I have come to love Detroit and the richness
of life I have found here. It is a gift to move daily through the
subject matter of my paintings and drawings.
Take the Tour:
You can also find Fracassa's work on view currently as part of the
Street Smart exhibition at Art Exchange Gallery in Detroit. Featuring
Art Exchange Gallery
2966 Woodward, Detroit
November 5 through January 1, 2005
For more information about Anne Fracassa and her work, click below: