Detroit is internationally known for its street art. And a major center for it is the neighborhood surrounding its farmers market.
Eastern Market is bustling on Saturdays. Thousands of shoppers crowd the aisles of Detroit’s sprawling historic farmers market, jostling for fresh produce—much of it locally grown—as well as a dazzling array of, well, everything. Spices, jams, baked goods, eggs, cheeses, hot sauces, garden plants, topiaries, candles, T-shirts… even bundles of decorative sticks. Sundays are quieter.
The market is closed on Sundays, and the surrounding neighborhood streets are mostly empty, especially in the morning. That makes it a perfect time to walk around and explore some of the best graffiti you are going to see anywhere. Detroit is renowned for its graffiti art. Taggers come from all over the world to do work here. And the market neighborhood is filled with it, much of it sanctioned. Of course, painting on buildings in the neighborhood has a long commercial history:
The streets surrounding Eastern Market have long been—and still are, in many cases—home to warehouses, distributors and processing plants for produce, meats and other food products (Grobbel’s, “America’s oldest corned beef specialist,” has been there since 1883). Some of the spaces are now vacant, others have been converted to bars, restaurants and quirky retail establishments. Many of them have been elaborately tagged. Marion and I spent part of last Sunday morning walking the mostly empty streets. Here are some of the things we saw.
We hope to be back next week with a recipe. But if not, in any case, we’ll try to keep it interesting.