detroit

Mike Kelley, Mobile Homestead (detail), 2010–. Installation view, 4454 Woodward Avenue, Detroit.

Mike Kelley

Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)

Mike Kelley, Mobile Homestead (detail), 2010–. Installation view, 4454 Woodward Avenue, Detroit.

Mike Kelley’s Mobile Homestead, 2010–, opened to the public in its permanent location in midtown Detroit this past May, a little more than a year after the artist’s untimely death. The edifice, a full-scale simulation of his childhood domicile in Detroit’s working-class suburb Westland, stands as a (anti-) monument to Kelley as well as to the contradictory, financially depressed city that it engages. Commissioned by Artangel and initially comprising the facade and front third of the Kelley family’s ranch-style house, the fragmentary homestead was for two and a half years either being transported on a flatbed truck, secured in a local storage facility, or parked on a lot outside MOCAD; in its goofy and vernacular form, it appeared unsuited for its ostensible purpose of social engagement. The seemingly ironic public artwork was then the subject of three surprisingly affecting

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