Cranbrook ‘Truth’ Exhibit Spotlights Flint & Detroit Residents Speaking Their Minds [VIDEO]
On November 18, Cranbrook Art Museum will debut its fall series of exhibitions, including the highly-anticipated The Truth Is I Hear You, a region-wide collaboration with artist group The Cause Collective.
The Cause Collective consists of Ryan Alexiev, Jim Ricks, Will Sylvester and Hank Willis Thomas, a team of artists, designers and ethnographers who brought their Truth Booth to eleven locations in Detroit and Flint this summer. The booth is a portable recording studio in the shape of a giant speech bubble which set out to capture what the residents of each location define as real, authentic, valuable and true.
Participants had up to two minutes to record a statement starting with the words, “The Truth Is…” The filmed results, numbering more than one thousand, have been used to create an ambitious 60-foot-wide video installation that will be on display at Cranbrook Art Museum through March 19, 2017. The exhibition opens to the public on November 19, with a special ArtMembers' Opening Reception held on Friday, November 18 from 7-9pm.
The tour captured “truths" from a wide-range of locations that speaks to the diversity of the region, such as the Osborn neighborhood in Detroit, the Arab-American Museum in Dearborn and the Hispanic Technology and Community Center of Greater Flint. Cranbrook Art Museum will host public screenings of selections from the exhibition in a variety of locations in Detroit and Flint. Check their website for upcoming dates and times.
The Cause Collective team has previously toured The Truth Booth throughout Afghanistan, Ireland, and South Africa, and are currently touring it around the United States, with the hope of visiting all 50 states by Election Day. Their stop in Michigan was their longest and most in-depth stop on the tour.
“I am grateful for my time in Detroit and Flint, and it has been a privilege to be entrusted with the residents' truths,“ says Will Sylvester of The Cause Collective. “Our hope is that through the exhibition, these communities will learn from each other through their own words. I invite everyone to come out to Cranbrook or the public screenings to further participate in our search for the truth.”
Artist Hank Willis Thomas speaks further to the impact of the project, “The tour allowed us to address deep issues in American society while also inspiring engagement through the cathartic process of recording testimonials. Our aim is to present voices and faces that are often suppressed or ignored.”
The project is funded in part through a $60,000 matching grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, through their Knight Arts Challenge Detroit initiative, which looks to fund ideas that engage and enrich Detroit through the arts.