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Detroit Institute of Arts celebrates Gracehoper Conservation Project and Reopening of North Lawn - Public invited to event Oct. 12 that includes dog walk, poetry reading and lecture

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

(Detroit)—The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) is hosting a community event featuring a dog walk, poetry reading, and lecture to celebrate the completion of the Gracehoper conservation project and the reopening of the North Lawn on Saturday, Oct. 12.

Gracehoper, the monumental painted-steel sculpture by Tony Smith displayed on the museum’s North Lawn, underwent extensive conservation treatment this past summer to restore its surface after 30 years of exposure to harsh weather and natural corrosion. The DIA repainted the sculpture using a durable black paint that is projected to last 15–20 years.

In addition to viewing the newly restored Gracehoper, the celebration will feature a community dog walk led by Canine to Five—a Midtown dog daycare and grooming facility—at 10 a.m., a poetry reading by students from the Inside Out Literary Arts Project at 11 a.m., and a talk by John Steele, DIA conservator of sculpture and decorative arts, about the conservation of Gracehoper at 1 p.m.

The dog walk will begin near the DIA’s John R entrance, and walkers are expected to have their dogs on a leash. Detroit Dog Park, a group of local dog lovers working to bring dog parks to the city, will also be present to spread the word about their initiative. Their first park, which is set to open this year, will be located at the Macomb Playlot, an old playground at 17th and Rose Streets in Corktown, near the Michigan Central Train Station.

Justin Rogers, a veteran of the award-winning Brave New Voices slam team, and students Kennedie King and Samuel Taylor, from the Inside Out Literary Arts Project, will perform poems inspired by Gracehoper.

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Hours and Admission
Museum hours are 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Tuesdays–Thursdays, 9 a.m.–10 p.m. Fridays, and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Admission is $8 for adults, $6 for seniors, $4 for ages 6–17, and free for DIA members and residents of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties. For membership information call 313-833-7971.


The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), one of the premier art museums in the United States, is home to more than 60,000 works that comprise a multicultural survey of human creativity from ancient times through the 21st century. From the first Van Gogh painting to enter a U.S. museum (Self-Portrait, 1887), to Diego Rivera's world-renowned Detroit Industry murals (1932–33), the DIA’s collection is known for its quality, range, and depth. The DIA’s mission is to create opportunities for all visitors to find personal meaning in art.

Programs are made possible with support from residents of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties.