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Contact:  Jaclyn Strez
(313) 510-1815


Fantastical Landscapes and Creatures at innovative Detroit gallery 
Artists discuss a natural world in today's contemporary cosmos

	Detroit, March 6, 2013 - It was October 1998, hammers and drills
were still pounding and buzzing as curious art enthusiasts entered
the newly opened gallery for the first time.  "The show must go on!",
proclaimed the gallery's founder.  And it did.  Mixed throughout the
chaos were 12 actors performing a piece by Phaedra Robinson, who was
eventually to become a long time Detroit based artist now living in
Miami.  "Gallery goers thought the construction workers were part of
the art performance.  Little did they know, the construction work was
real, but then again, so was the art."  says Contemporary Art
Institute of Detroit's president Aaron Timlin.  That was almost 15
years ago.  The detroit contemporary has returned in recent years;
now under the auspice of CAID.  Along with the return of detroit
contemporary, so returns the artist Phaedra Robinson in her first
solo exhibition in the space.  Robinson, a director at detroit
contemporary in 2002 and 2003, and former curator at Juris Galleries,
also returns to curate a group show on the first floor running
parallel to her solo installation on the second level.  
	"Beyond the Landscape of Love and Death" a solo show by Phaedra
Robinson, in conjunction with "The Nature Of...", a group exhibition
curated by the artist, opens at the detroit contemporary April 13,
2013 with a special live performance by Oblique Noir at 7pm.  The
exhibitions will run through May 12, 2013.
	"Beyond the Landscape of Love and Death" is a semi-autobiographical
exhibition that takes the form of metaphor, using materials from
Phaedra Robinson's life; from those she has loved; some who have
passed and some who remain. The sacred and the profane: fertility,
death, transformation and the beauty of birth are all represented in
a dream-like installation of plant- and creature-like forms
symbolically and formally eliciting the viewer's senses. Through the
marriage of organic and man-made materials, (such as palm fronds and
bicycle tires, or hair, thorns and glass beads), Phaedra Robinson has
created a powerful environment imbued with personal meaning.  "This
installation of objects and images speaks of the transformation from
struggle to the joy and beauty of the blossoming world around us",
says Robinson.  
	"The Nature Of..." is a collection of contemplations and tales (both
mythical and historical) told through the work of four powerful
creators each with their own unique focus on the relationship between
life in this world, death or that which lies in-between. South
African born Janet Slom currently lives between Connecticut and Miami
and joins the work of Renee Dooley, Mary Laredo, and Nicole Macdonald
from Detroit. "Through their intelligent and beautifully considered
works, we are given great insight into the relationship between
contemporary man and nature as well as the spiritual and creative
processes, which provide us with a path", says curator, Phaedra
Robinson.  The deceased, Mary Laredo, will be represented by never
before exhibited works.
  	Both shows open to the public with a reception to meet the artists
and curator on April 13 from 6pm to 10pm.  	          
	For more information contact Jaclyn Strez at
Jackie@detroitcontemporary.com, visit www.detroitcontemporary.com,
and check out the exhibition page on Facebook:

About The Artists

Phaedra Robinson - A painter, sculptor, dancer, performance and
installation artist, Phaedra Robinson has also worked in video, sound
and photography. She has participated in and organized many
collaborative, cross-media and mail-art projects. Her work has been
shown in museums and galleries both nationally and internationally.
Currently living and working in Miami, she teaches through the Miami
Art Museum and has been an art educator since 2000. Prior to moving
to Miami, FL in August 2008, Robinson lived most of her academic and
professional life as an artist based in Detroit, MI. There she also
played an important role as a teacher, curator, lecturer, writer and
community organizer and for a time as associate director and later
director of detroit contemporary. She taught for eight years at the
College for Creative Studies, (where she had received her BFA), while
also founding The Center for Creative Exchange. Robinson has served
on the boards and committees of multiple arts and community
organizations, and has written art criticism for various print and
online sources including The Metro Times, Miamiartzine.com, and for
the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts to discuss the
Lincoln Center List Print Collection.

Nicole MacDonald - For the past two years Nicole has been painting
very small areas of Detroit, making detailed landscapes of her
surrounding environment. The intention of these paintings is to make
an historical record, working from direct observation to a more
stylized rendering, blending fictitious elements and combining
perspectives. There is a similar approach in her stencil and wheat
paste work, generally designed for the outdoors, where reality is
altered for viewer accessibility. The outdoor art aims to project a
social message on issues that particularly affect the City of Detroit
and that will stimulate conversation and questioning of the status

Janet Slom - South African born artist Janet Slom has won numerous
international awards and commissions. She has had 18 solo exhibitions
and participated in over 50 group shows in the U.S. and abroad.  Her
work is included in prominent collections including the South Africa
Parliament (Cape Town, South Africa).She has exhibited at United
Nations (NYC), Lincoln Center (NYC), the Adelson Gallery (NYC),
Everard Read Gallery (Cape Town, South Africa), and Frank Pages
Gallery (Baden-Baden, Germany).
She is currently on the faculty of Lehigh University's Iacocca
Institute Global Village and has received her MFA from Mass College
of Art.

Renee M. Dooley - Renee Dooley is a Detroit based artist who works in
collage and assemblage. A College for Creative Studies graduate, her
work is influenced by Dada and Surrealist art, folklore, fairytales
and mythology. Her work has been exhibited at the Charles H. Wright
Museum of African-American History, Madonna University, The Gallery
Project and Cranbrook Art Museum.

Mary Laredo - Mary Laredo, so-named after her birthplace of Laredo,
Texas, was a second-generation Mexican American who moved to Detroit
as a child, and grew up in the northwest side neighborhood known as
Brightmoor.  Laredo had pursued her interests in art and performance
for more than two decades, and received both BFA and MFA degrees from
Wayne State University where her concentration was metal jewelry
design and sculpture.
Laredo's autobiographical work often references the processes and
rituals of holistic healing using metal and natural materials as
metaphor for the body.  Laredo's sculpture and assemblages reveal an
underlying interest in form and object-making. 
Laredo was also active as an artist/educator in community and public
art projects on Detroit's southwest side, and is a founding member of
the Southwest Artists' Network of Detroit (SWAN-Detroit). 

Music by Oblique Noir - The eclectic repertoire of Oblique Noir
circles the globe, adding the "World" to "Lounge Music", as we put
our own spin on vintage boleros from Cuba, classic tunes and
lesser-known gems by such diverse artists as Billie Holiday, Patsy
Cline, Los Lobos, Fred Neil, Edith Piaf, and Kurt Weill; and theme
songs from films such as Black Orpheus and You Only Live Twice. Cover
tunes sung in English, French, Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese
showcase Sylvia Inwood's dynamic vocal presence and gift for
languages. Original compositions include instrumentals featuring
Djeto Juncaj's fiery flamenco guitar styling and K Kerry Gluckman's
infectious Latin rhythms, as well as original songs in Spanish and
French. Take a trip to distant lands and bygone eras with the
thrilling musical enchantment of Oblique Noir!

Images available upon request. 

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