Detroit Monuments In-Context
I can’t help but wonder what Lincoln whilst delivering the Emancipation Proclamation, would think of the ‘halo’ behind him created by Shepard Fairey or the People Mover rumbling by. If the Polish hero of the War for Independence would be displeased to learn he would spend infamy in the shadow of a casino. Our first President is relegated to being next to the headquarters of the largest automotive manufacture in the world and ironically, watching over the road that leads to Canada.
Detroit has some iconic monuments: Scott Fountain, Joe Louis' fist, Spirit of Detroit, and Rodin’s Thinker, but some of the other statuary has become invisible to us. We’re too used to it.
I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge Lee Freidlander’s book, The American Monument, for providing me with a template for seeing monuments in context and allowing me to wonder what those immortalized might think. - R.F.