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[Published on October 28, 2014]

When I was told about an iron pour at 555 Nonprofit Gallery and Studios, I didn't realize the radiance of Colectivo Cajeme had begun showing two days earlier. Insightful Mr. P of 555 relayed helpful background information about the artists until I pointed in admiration to Una Galaxia para Fátima. Quickly he pointed to a woman sitting alone and preoccupied with her phone across the exhibition space and said, “You should tell her yourself. She’s sitting right there.”

It was Gabriela Galáz—the artist whose work I found thrilling. After nearly galloping to speak with her, I invaded her isolation by flooding her personal bubble with compliments. Unfortunately, my impulse incited a raised hand, slight tilt of the head and an unsettled, "I'm sorry, I only speak Spanish."

Quick to excuse my poor Spanish diction, I well enough to continue the conversation. From our exchange, I learned Colectivo Cajeme began with artists in Sonora, Mexico and the municipal support was a tremendous advantage in garnering community recognition and in showing internationally—two members had already exhibited their work in France and Spain. Those who came to Detroit for the opening, created molds for the smoldering iron outside but would either continue traveling or return to Mexico.

[Published on September 24, 2014]

Vast ceilings and glass walls made the interior of the Federal Reserve Building feel like it was taken from a swanky gathering scene in Batman: The Animated Series when DIFFA’s Fifth Annual DINING BY DESIGN served luxury in design, art and cuisine. The expanse of vision from board members to staff held in groovy energy the main attraction of conceptual fascinations supporting the fight against HIV/AIDS and the work of Michigan AIDS Coalition.

To the right of the entrance, guests weaved through the silent auction placing bids and eating up visual spreads from artists like Deborah Kashdan, whose flair I’d first acquainted myself with at the Whitdel Arts at a summer show. To the left, buyers slowly filled the live auction arena where image-makers donated work to Friday’s ArtWorks Detroit.

Behind the live auction a wide passageway offered an assortment of cheese and quenching signature cocktails by Patrón, which lead to the dining exhibition spaces. In the monstrous display arena, some of the striking contributions for DINING BY DESIGN are included below but do not fully encompass the scope of excellence for the dinner gala.

It was impossible not to hover in front of arrangements or fail to appreciate each bulb of light and napkin fold. Magical it was to witness some great humanitarian strides as the community anticipated more atmospheres to eat with the forthcoming DLECTRICITY and Detroit Design Festival.

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