found alley wood, paint, tin cans, speakers, collected sounds
My City is Your City is an on-going project that documents sounds unique to the quirky and heavily diverse city of Hamtramck, MI, a city of 2 square miles inside of Detroit. Hamtramck is one of the only places in Southeast Michigan that has a steadily increasing population of newcomers. Some of these are artists, musicians, students, but most are new immigrants to the United States, including Polish, Ukrainian, Yemeni and Bangladeshi.
“When I moved to Hamtramck I felt like I was in a foreign city. In order to contextualize and understand the place, I made myself a Sound-Collecting Suit. I immersed myself in the project of collecting sounds and voices of the neighborhood. The suit acts as a catalyst to engage people on the street, while giving me a uniform to do my job as an artist.”
My City is Your City is a physical and audio representation of 4 years in Hamtramck. It is a collection of images and sounds and talk from neighborhood residents; it is about who they are and shared experiences that inform our daily lives.
Jessica Frelinghuysen received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and her Master of Architecture from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. She sculpts objects to help negotiate social anxieties and continually seeks to reconcile the separation between the individual and society. When encountering a new place, she will usually spend a long time observing, sketching and trying to figure how she fits into a particular environment. She is not afraid of the absurd; in fact, she appreciates the importance of humor as a vehicle. Currently living in Detroit, Jessica is a lecturer at Stamps School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan.