PDN Photo of the Day

Detroit’s Blues Culture

Amy Sacka’s series “Sundays at the Carpet House” is a part of the free audio-visual exhibition, Framed by WDET: Places Where We Belong. Through the work of 18 Detroit-based photographers and storytellers the exhibition celebrates the diverse legacies of Detroit communities. Framed, presented by Detroit’s public radio station, WDET, runs through July 21.

“Sundays at the Carpet House” looks at long-time residents who preserve and reflect Detroit’s southern roots and blues culture through a grassroots music jam. Once a week, a vacant lot not far from the intersection of highways I-94 and I-75, comes to life as a bands perform on the wooden stage, folks set up their grills, and dance on the lawn. The gathering, referred to as John’s Carpet House, “has morphed into a weekly reunion in Detroit where everyone is family,” writes Sacka in her artist statement. The tradition began 20 years ago on a nearby porch as an informal gathering for old friends to enjoy the blues.

“Sundays at the Carpet House” is a collaboration between Sacka and WDET audio producer Laura Herberg.

Between 2014 and 2018, WDET paired Detroit-based photographers and audio producers to create stories about their own communities and neighbors. The collective body of work, which features 10 communities and documents the voices of nearly 100 local residents, is being presented for the first time in one space as an immersive experience that celebrates Detroit as a global city.

With photography by: Amy Sacka, Corine Vermeulen, Cydni Elledge, Doug Coombe, Erik Paul Howard, Justin Milhouse, Kenny Karpov, Marvin Shaouni, and Sean Work

And audio stories by: Conor Anderson, Courtney Hurtt, Laura Herberg, Laura Weber-Davis, Kenny Karpov, Martina Guzmán, Rob St. Mary, Shannon Cason, Shelby Jouppi, and Zak Rosen

“Sundays at the Carpet House”
Photographs by Amy Sacka, audio by Laura Herberg
As part of Framed by WDET: Places Where We Belong
Through July 21, 2019
100 1 Woodward Avenue, Detroit

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