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Artist Installs Mirrored Suburban Dwelling Inside Historic Detroit Bank

Doug Aitken, Mirage Detroit, 2018, Image by Doug Aitken Workshop
Doug Aitken, Mirage Detroit, 2018, Image by Doug Aitken Workshop

Doug Aitken’s ‘Mirage Detroit’ will open to the public on October 10th inside the former State Savings Bank. The historic Michigan building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in the early 1980s. Aitken’s reflective installation breathes new life into the neoclassical structure.

Previously featured with Aitken’s impressive 2017 Coachella-based Mirage in the southern California desert, the artist once again utilizes the outline of a basic suburban dwelling and transforms it. The mirrored installation takes the form of a classical American dwelling but interplays with the interior bank structure and artificial light. The extreme nature of the reflected stone and marble surrounding with the river rocks and earth, draws the visitors inward to an internal labyrinth of interior spaces.

Doug Aitken, Mirage Detroit, 2018, Image by Doug Aitken Workshop
Doug Aitken, Mirage Detroit, 2018, Image by Doug Aitken Workshop

The dwelling is symbolically devoid of windows, doors, inhabitants and possessions, embracing the relationship of the organic and inorganic. Unlike his desert façade, which had a unique interplay with natural light, Aitken collaborated with lighting designer Andi Watson to choreograph white light that “meanders” across the interior. The artificial light offers a similar interplay as natural light but this time the interplay is with shadow.

Doug Aitken, Mirage Detroit, 2018, Image by Doug Aitken Workshop
Doug Aitken, Mirage Detroit, 2018, Image by Doug Aitken Workshop

The basic geometric form of the classical American home creates an interactive and immersive design with the addition of the mirrored panels. The piece offers a rare viewpoint at every angle, allowing the visitor to return with a unique perspective every time.

Information courtesy of Architectural Digest
Photography © Doug Aitken

DISCLAIMER: The following project does not feature Alucobond® aluminum composite material (ACM). The “Industry (Architecture)” section of our blog focuses on extraordinary architectural works from around the world. While this project does not feature our ACM, we have included comparable samples to what was used in the project above.

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