Rethinking the Narrative


Brightmoor, Detroit is a 4 square mile neighborhood that makes headlines as an example of both narratives that swirl around the city—that of its rebirth and of its housing crisis. Brightmoor has the highest number of blighted houses per square mile out of any city neighborhood, and so it has been targeted by Mayor Duggan for his (at times, shady) demolition plans. At the same time, community organizers within the neighborhood have joined together to create urban farms, and neighborhood beautification projects. These conflicting narratives set the stage for this interactive installation project that seeks to challenge the narratives themselves and explore the grey areas between them. Like a town hall, you must step up and speak the home addresses as you see them fade away over the years. You have the ability to save them by speaking up, and being a part of the conversation. Nothing is black and white.

Using the Detroit Open Data Portal and cross-referencing the Loveland database of foreclosed houses, this installation uses the most current data to plot each house address that has been demolished in Brightmoor. Using the microphone as an input, human speech can reverse the damage done to the homes, and stop the neighborhood from collapsing.

This project was created in collaboration with Hunter Thackham.

Tools Used
HTML 5, CSS 3, JavaScript, JSON, Annyang Speech Recognition.

Nothing is black or white,
theres always a grey area.

Hi there!

My name is Eric James Wilson. I'm a graphic designer for brands, packaged goods and LCD screens who likes to think, sometimes draws pictures, and makes silkscreened editions.

I like to get my hands dirty in my garden, see new things around the world, and I like to think I'm a pretty good cook.


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© 2019 Eric James Wilson