graffiti walk: detroit, michigan

Over the past few years, Detroit has put together a nice collection of street art in its Eastern Market just east of downtown. There are things to see in other parts of town, but the Market is where you can stroll about the street and be greeted by one mural after another. Amazingly, murals painted three years ago remain untouched. The Market is a food district sporting a large farmers market, streets of butchers and produce sellers, mostly catering to the city's building food scene. There's also a sprinkling of bars and restaurants so you can make a full day of it (if that's your thing). I'd say it took me about eight hours of strolling over two days to see "everything". A map is available via Murals in the Market, but I prefer to be surprised!

It's worth strolling around downtown as well, although non-sanctioned street art is militantly monitored and prosecuted. Even Shepard Fairey, in town to paint a giant mural on a downtown building, was charged with a felony for a bit of freelance work he (cough-cough) allegedly did in the area (some of which is still available). You'll also want to stop in at The Z Lot, a muraled parking garage, and, in the alley next door, is The Belt, sporting a great collection of sanctioned street art by Hush, Vhils, Fairey, Tristan Eaton, Faile, and others.

And then, just randomly wandering about town (I accidentally found a Swoon on the north side of Detroit while investigating the transition from urban blight to suburban might) you can see wonderful work.

Well worth the visit!

(I waited 40 minutes for a 10-second gap to catch that mural without a large truck parked in front of it!) 


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