Gumption Galore

An homage to uniformity of the fifties by Mary Bustamonte.

An homage to uniformity of the fifties by Mary Bustamonte.

Finding the entrance to Rosa Parks Boys was as unique as the transformation of a loading dock and storage space to a skateboarding arena. Inside, Mary Bustamonte declared her strength in styling and editing within the realm of fashion by forming visual and poetic testaments to escape the lifelessness of retail. She epitomized uniformity of the fifties by attaching snapshots of the decade in which people were facing the same direction to a light blue button down.

Bustamonte admitted her impatience hindered her construction of well-crafted clothing but intended to practice her capacity with a camera by trial and error. Photography in “Bourgeoi-Zine” showcased her intentional juxtaposition of the rogue and the materialistic. Quite a comical fusion it was because exclusive familiarities of goings-on among those who identify with each social stratosphere seem to promote access to each world. Although finding the entrance to the facility, which had been magically transformed, was a bit of a struggle, my appreciation for stumbling upon such a fascinating space turned into a fervent desire to explore more.

A small portion of works by Above after a two-month residency.

A small portion of works by Above after a two-month residency.

Inner State Gallery boasted an array of glossy arrangements of wood, text and colors while fixating attention on the iconic arrow for which Above is internationally recognized. While gazing at the fruits of a two-month residency on the western wall, I crossed paths with photographer Michele Lundgren and her daughter Cara while we were hoping to meet the mind behind culminations of acrylic, spray paint and screen print ink. They arrived after catching an opening in the Eastern Market but were on their way out so I continued moseying. When I caught myself gawking at “Lock – Manhattan” and other puzzle-like creations, I made my exit as well.

Sean Nader filled gallery walls with energetic characters and bold colors.

Further into the east side of Detroit was Block One Gallery where paintings by Sean Nader were on display. Animated countenances of subjects from the artist’s past and present were prominent in the expressive surplus. Wrinkles of “Charles Bukowski” and caffeinated Dungeons and Dragons characters were only a portion of Nader’s gumption galore. He revealed the gallery space fell into his lap when friends of his were in the process of developing a conjoined unit of the building. It was one of several highlights in his journey through 2014 and having sold several pieces with an hour left, a toast to his serendipitous opening was crucial and my last for the evening.

Portrait of a couple by Sean Nader.

Portrait of a couple by Sean Nader.

Warning words on a baby's garment by Mary Bustamonte.

Warning words on a baby’s garment by Mary Bustamonte.

"Bourgeoi-Zine" by Mary Bustamonte.

“Bourgeoi-Zine” by Mary Bustamonte.

Inside the other half of the Rosa Parks Boys venue.

Inside the other half of the Rosa Parks Boys venue.

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