Detroit Institute of Arts

Detroit, MI

The Detroit Institute of Arts is a Beaux Arts building designed by Paul Phillipe Cret and constructed between 1921 and 1927. It is one of three historic buildings that constitutes the Cultural Center Historic District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places; the other two buildings include the Detroit Public Library, a Italian Renaissance style building designed by Cass Gilbert and built between 1915 and 1921, and the Horace H. Rackham Education Memorial Building, which was designed by Harley, Ellington and Day, and was built in 1941. Located directly across Woodward Avenue from the Detroit Public Library, the Detroit Institute of Arts consists of three interconnected structures; the original 1927 Cret building, which includes the auditorium and the main block, and the 1965 South Wing addition and the 1971 North Wing addition, both constructed Harley Ellington, Cowin, and Stirton.

The original Cret building is an example of Beaux-Arts architectural style. One of the largest and grandest spaces within the building is known as the Great Hall. Intended for receptions, the Great Hall is a multi-story rectangular room adorned with marble floors, and travertine walls covered with French and Flemish tapestries and carved decorative features, and a decorative barrel vaulted ceiling.

As part of a $158 million dollar, multi-year restoration, EverGreene restored the decorative arts painted on ceiling in the Detroit Institute of Arts’ Great Hall.