Dora Apel is a cultural critic, arts writer, and art historian who has written about traumatic imagery and memory, race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, cities and ruins. She is the author of six books, including Beautiful Terrible Ruins: Detroit and the Anxiety of Decline (2015) and Calling Memory into Place (fall 2020).She is the W. Hawkins Ferry Endowed Chair Professor Emerita of Modern and Contemporary Art History in the Department of Art and Art History at Wayne State University.
Shirley Woodson is an artist, art educator, curator, collector and a founding member of the National Conference of Artists Michigan. She is a MacDowell Colony and ConFaba Fellow, and held art residencies at the Fabric Workshop and Museum, as well as the Brandywine Printmaking Workshop and Archives in Philadelphia. Her writings have appeared in the International Review of African American Art, MidMarch Arts Press, along with the publications of Morgan State University, Marygrove College, NCA Michigan and others. Woodson also served as an illustrator for Broadside Press. Current projects include preparation of an exhibition of her abstract drawings.
V. Mitch McEwen is an assistant professor of Architecture at Princeton University. She is the co-founder of A(n) Office, an architecture collaborative of studios in Detroit, Los Angeles, and Brooklyn. A(n) Office projects have been commissioned by the US Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, and the Istanbul Design Biennial. McEwen’s projects in Detroit have produced a series of operations on houses previously owned by the Detroit Land Bank Authority. These include a strategy for 100 houses selected by the City of Detroit to densify the neighborhood of Fitzgerald, and an award-winning repurposing of a balloon-frame house titled House Opera.
Bill Harris is a Wayne State University Emeritus Professor of English. He is a creative writer and arts critic. In 2011 he received the Kresge Foundation Eminent Artist award. His plays have received over a hundred productions nationwide. He has authored books of plays, poetry, reappraisals of American history and a short story collection, I Got To Keep Moving.
Nichole Christian is a creative chameleon. She’s also a writer and Detroit native who began her career on staff for some of the nation’s top news outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, Time magazine, The New York Times, and the Detroit Free Press. She is the co-author of Canvas Detroit, and was most recently creative director, editor and lead writer for A Life Speaks (from the Kresge Foundation. Her writing appears in the books: A Detroit Anthology; Portraits 9/11/01: The Collected “Portraits of Grief” from the New York Times; Dear Dad: Reflections on Fatherhood, and the arts journal, Essay’d.
Biba Bell is a writer, dancer, and choreographer based in Detroit. Her writing has been published in The Drama Review (TDR), Dance Research Journal, Movement Research Performance Journal, Detroit Research, Pastelegram, Performance Research Journal, Sound American and FRONT. Bell earned her Ph.D. in Performance Studies from New York University and is an Assistant Professor of Dance at Wayne State University.
MaryAnn Wilkinson is a former head of the Modern and Contemporary Art department at the Detroit Institute of Arts. She subsequently became the Exhibition Director at Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan, and is currently the Executive Director of Detroit’s Scarab Club. She has written extensively on art, design, and artists, with a particular emphasis on European modern painting, sculpture, and decorative art. She is currently on the board of Midtown Detroit, Inc., and on the steering committee for the (Detroit) Cultural Center Planning Initiative
Anthony Marcellini is an artist, writer, educator, and curator. His artwork and projects have been widely exhibited at venues including MOCAD, Detroit; P-Exclamation, New York; Harmony Murphy Gallery, Los Angeles; Galerie Michael Janssen, Singapore; Witte De With, Rotterdam; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; The Gothenburg Konsthall; and the Wilkinson Gallery, London. His writing has been published in outlets such as Paletten Art Journal; the web-based publications Nowiswere and Art Practical; and the scholarly journal Detroit Research. He is currently the Programs and Exhibitions Manager of Soul Studio, an art studio for adults with disabilities.
Steve Hughes is the writer and publisher of Detroit’s longest-running zine Stupor. He is also the author of two collections, Stupor: A Treasury of True Stories (Stupor House, 2011), funded by the Kresge Foundation, and STIFF (Wayne State University Press, 2018). In 2011, he began producing the potluck/literary series called The Good Tyme Writers Buffet. Hughes lives in Hamtramck Michigan and continues to collect stories at local watering holes for forthcoming issues of Stupor. Photo courtesy of Jessica Frelinghuysen.
Kathleen Rashid is a lifelong Detroiter who grew up in the Linwood and Lothrop area. An artist, activist, and art educator, her paintings are in many collections including the James Pearson Duffy Collection at Wayne State University. She was formerly a contributing writer and graphic artist for the Fifth Estate, a Detroit-based journal of social criticism.
Clara DeGalan was born and raised in Detroit, MI, where she attended the Detroit High School for the Fine and Performing Arts. She has an MFA in painting from Wayne State University and teaches drawing and painting at Madonna University. Her current work, which seeks to define a spiritual path through life guided by synesthetic connections, the technical lacework of teaching, New Age literature and imagery, and the beauty of the visible world, has been widely exhibited. She has curated several shows, most recently Water Sacred at Detroit’s Scarab Club.
Matthew Piper is Detroit-based writer and editor with a special interest in modern and contemporary art, architecture, and urbanism. His work has been featured in Belle Isle to 8 Mile: An Insider’s Guide to Detroit, Curbed Detroit, Detroit Research, Infinite Mile, KnightArts, Model D, and the second edition of Thanks For the View, Mr. Mies. He is a co-founder and the editor-in-chief of Essay’d.
Dennis A. Nawrocki serves as adjunct faculty in the department of art and art history at Wayne State University. He directed Center Galleries at Detroit’s College for Creative Studies from 1990 to 1998, in addition to teaching art history there from 1990 to 2005. Author of Art in Detroit Public Places (Wayne State University Press, 2008) and a freelance critic, Nawrocki is a co-founder of Essay’d, and he has reviewed national and international exhibitions for Art in America, Sculpture, American Ceramics, New Art Examiner, and Metro Times.
Steve Panton is the founder of 2739 Edwin and 9338 Campau Galleries, the co-founder of the Hamtramck Neighborhood Arts Festival and the Hamtramck Free School, and one of the co-founders of Essay’d. He has conducted curatorial workshops at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, is the inaugural curator of the innovative Art@TheMax program at Detroit’s Orchestra Hall, and writes on Detroit art for Sculpture Magazine. Outside of art programming, his background is in technology, engineering, and education. Short Resume. Short Portfolio. Image credit: Jeff Cancelosi.