COVID Memorial Art in TCF Center Helps Residents Heal

Aug 30, 2021

The City of Detroit Office of Arts, Culture and Entrepreneurship, Cranbrook Art Museum, the TCF Center, and the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy presented a large-scale art installation to the public on August 31, that features hundreds of colorful fabric pouches created by southeast Michigan residents to help them heal from the depth of loss felt during the pandemic.

More than 1,200 regional Detroit residents created personal pieces of art in honor of their losses to comprise the overall piece. The installation will be on display through August 2022.

“Our team at the TCF Center is always amazed at the impact of a new art installation, said Karen Totaro, general manager TCF Center/ASM Global. "We are proud to host a piece that will mean so much to our community and the perseverance they have.”


The public art installation was designed to provide support and healing for residents who have experienced all kinds of loss – such as lost loved ones, lost homes, lost jobs, and lost hope — during the COVID-19 pandemic. The project is open to all regional residents who experienced physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, occupational, and environmental loss.

“The TCF Center Art Committee is honored to be asked to display this installation in the center,” said Lisa Canada, chairperson of the Art Committee and Detroit Regional Convention Facility Authority (DRCDA) board member. “The plan is to continue to add to the memorial even after its TCF installation. We hope that this effort brings peace and hope to Metro Detroit residents in their grief for loved ones lost to the pandemic.”

The Healing Memorial is located at the north end of the TCF center at the corner of Congress and Washington Boulevard on Level 3.


Mark Wallace, president, and CEO of the Conservancy said it is fitting that the Riverwalk and Dequindre Cut played a role in this important project that means so much to so many.

“We are proud of the important role the Riverwalk and the Dequindre Cut played during the pandemic,” said Wallace. “People see our public spaces as a place of comfort and respite. The Healing Memorial project is yet another step we all take together to help us heal during this challenging time.”

Wallace said one of the biggest challenges with COVID has been people's isolation caused by the virus and how it has affected the grieving process. He hopes the Healing Memorial helps people feel more connected.

"Covid has taken a profound toll on our region and many Detroiters share a common grief over the loss of a loved one," said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. “We hope this very personal memorial will help in the healing process and serve as an opportunity for people across our region to understand and support one another. I'm grateful to Rochelle Riley, director of arts and culture for the city, our partners at TCF Center, Cranbrook, and the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy for helping to make the vision for this memorial a reality."