As a community activist and artist in Detroit focusing on city history and neighborhood empowerment, Macdonald has made large‑scale public installations on abandoned buildings for the past 10 years. She works with surrounding communities to determine who to represent and how to install the work. Outdoor art is a way for organizations large and small to spread messages to the community about what they hope to achieve in their community and in the larger world. The new “Living Musical Legends” portrait series, featuring artists in 10 musical genres, was installed in late 2018 on the oldest Albert Kahn-designed bank in Detroit, on Woodward Avenue near the Motown Museum. Other large scale projects Macdonald has worked on include Detroit Portrait Series consisting of installed painted panels of city luminaries from the past and present replacing vacant windows on abandoned city buildings. She invited the surrounding community to determine who should be spotlighted. The exchange between artist and community gives a visual voice to often overlooked concerns and dreams.
Macdonalds collages and paintings have been exhibited in both local and international venues such as the Detroit Institute of Arts and Casco Gallery Utrecht in the Netherlands. When not working on exhibitions Macdonald divides her time between several nonprofit boards and gallerys in Detroit including; City Sculpture, Southwest Artist Latino Network, and the contemporary Art Institute of Detroit. She won a Kresge Fellowhip in Visual Arts in 2017. Her work has been featured in Art in America and Riverwise Magazine.
Join us for her lecture on September 8th and learn about the trials and tribulations of making public large scale art.