Detroit 300: Fast Forward, Play Back
Fast Forward, Play Back is an installation commissioned by the Detroit Institute of Arts to honor the
city of Detroit's 300th birthday. A team composed of an architect, choreographer and video artist
joined forces to develop this work. Meditating upon the temporal-spatial crossing, the work
focused on the interrelationships of people, events and place, and the understanding that a city, like
an institution, is a physical and cultural organism whose nature is simultaneously fixed and in flux.
To explore these ideas, fieldwork in a Detroit elementary school, an archetypal urban institution
was incorporated into a physical and conceptual framework constructed in the museum. The
installation formed a public plaza in which surfaces of the installation juxtaposed written, verbal,
and visual testimony by a wide range of current and former citizens of Detroit. Within this
environment the museum visitor played different roles - that of performer, participant, and
witness while considering Detroit's past, present and future.