DETROIT — After many decades at virtual standstill, Detroit has been quickly met with change, bringing with it new opportunities as well as growing pains. However, one of the fringe benefits of spending so much time under-the-radar is that Detroit’s physical and cultural history remains visible, accessible, and present (for now). Young people especially have been drawn to the wide-open sense of possibility in the city, but there is also the old guard — a cohort that has seen the city transform over a much longer timeline, and from which there is much to be learned.
Artist Kurt Novak is about as old school as it gets, and he’s captured a prodigious cross section of Detroit’s diverse talent pool in a series of portraits rendered through a live-scanning process that stretches the limits of what a single frame can capture. The show, Detroit Portraits, is installed across three floors surrounding the lobby atrium of the Detroit Symphony Opera (DSO) building — an appropriate setting for this collection of talented contributors to the legacy of art, literature, and music in the city.