DIA director discusses plans to increase diversity for the museum

etroit Institute of Arts Director Salvador Salort-Pons addressed the National Conference of Artists Michigan on Wednesday at the Northwest Activities Center to detail the museum’s goals and plans for increasing diversity and executing them all by 2021.

The event gave the NCA, which is majority African American artist, art collectors, and lovers of artistry, the chance to voice their concerns and ideas directly to the biggest platform for art here in Detroit.

Salort-Pons is no novice when it comes to the art world. Born and raised in Madrid, Spain, Salort-Pons has admired art his whole life. After years of teaching, and working in museums, both in the United States and overseas, Salvador decided that the Detroit institute of Arts was where he would one day strive to become Director. In 2015 Salvador began his position as director and he is ready to turn his new vision for the institute into a reality.

“The DIA will be the town square of our community, a gathering place for everybody.” the museum’s new vision statement reads.

Plans to collaborate with Wayne State University, the Michigan Science Center, the Detroit Public Library, and the Charles H. Wright Museum, just to name a few, are all in the works to bring together the wedge amongst millennials in the community, with a focus on African Americans.


Salvador states that among the 22 percent regional population of African Americans in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb Counties, only 10 percent of that population visits the museum.

“For the most part, museums are a passive organization. Our goal is to make the DIA an active organization in the community.” Salvador explains.

From projects in the neighborhoods, paid internships, focus groups, and paid community consultants, the goal is to bring in more diverse traffic to the institute. By revamping African American, Asian, and contemporary art galleries and exhibits the Detroit Institute of Arts plans to tackle issues on race, gender, and poverty.

The plans are already in motion with the “Art of Rebellion: Black Art of the Civil Rights Movement” exhibit opening this summer. For the first time The Detroit Institute of Arts and The Charles H. Wright Museum are joining forces to bring art to the community.

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