Jan. 9, 2019


Henry Ford Health System to Boost Art Influence in Detroit Neighborhood with ArtBlock Project

Newswise — DETROIT – Henry Ford Health System announced today a community arts project that will enhance the bustling art community in a Detroit neighborhood and showcase the talents of local artists.

Supported by a $200,000 youth and family grant from the Vera and Joseph Dresner Foundation, Henry Ford will revitalize a vacant commercial building and its property at 1411 Holden and Lincoln into a vibrant art destination and education and community meeting space. It will be called ArtBlock.

“This project is another example of how Henry Ford supports the communities we serve beyond just health care,” says Mary Jane Vogt, Henry Ford’s interim senior vice president of Development. “We’re thrilled to partner with the Vera and Joseph Dresner Foundation and foster the neighborhood’s bustling arts network.”

Vogt says the project represents Henry Ford’s most significant investment to date in public arts and arts education.

ArtBlock is in the Northwest Goldberg neighborhood, an area home to Henry Ford Hospital, Motown Museum and Tabernacle Church. Also nearby is the construction site of the Henry Ford Cancer Institute’s Brigette Harris Cancer Pavilion, a first-class, six-story facility due to open in 2020. The boundaries are west of the Lodge Freeway and north of I-94.

ArtBlock will feature five public art installations including two exterior murals, a curated interior display of stylized graffiti, a textile installation and interactive rideable, animal-shaped and pedal-powered metal sculptures.

“This project reflects the Dresner’s legacy of increasing access and opportunity in communities, and we’re pleased to join Henry Ford to make that happen,” says Virginia Romano, the Dresner Foundation’s executive director. “ArtBlock will bolster the neighborhood’s rich cultural legacy.”

1xRUN (one-time-run), the Detroit-based arts publisher behind Murals in the Market, will curate the art installations in collaboration with Henry Ford. Participating artists include Fel3000ft, Amy Fisher Price, Juan Martinez and Michelle Tanguay. The building’s interior will be decorated by select graffiti artists.   

Artists’ work on ArtBlock will begin in May, with an anticipated kick-off open event to occur later that month. ArtBlock will offer youth and family programming, with a focus on inclusive, accessible and high-quality workshops. Additionally, Green Living Science, a community partner that works with the students and families in Detroit, will help coordinate mural painting apprenticeships and provide environmental education.

Henry Ford purchased the 3,700-square-foot Holden property in February 2018.


MEDIA CONTACTS: David Olejarz / [email protected] / 313.874.4094

                                    Virginia Romano / [email protected] / 248.785.0299