Photographer Robert Johnson decided to do what many have and are doing as artists, especially photographers now a days in and around the Detroit area.. Pulling out their cameras and documenting the incredible downfall of one of the United States once greatest cities. Detroit has come a long way from bankruptcy and one, two, three hour, or even no response time at all from police to paramedics and fire rescue. The city is on its way again, slowly, to rebuilding itself – but, the real story is how it’s city officials did and we’re basically allowed to destroy it in the name of personal greed.
As part of a series entitled “Inside Detroit” for website Pixable, Robert Johnson traveled the streets in search of the real Detroit, not just what you see on the evening news. One building caught his attention more than most, the United Community Hospital, formerly the Southwest Detroit Hospital. It was sold to “Detroit businessman Harley K. Brown who re-opened the building as United Community Hospital and subsequently drove it into the ground to advance his boxing promotion career.”, says Johnson. More like a set of the walking dead then a commercial hospital that used to provide healthcare to the indignant population of Detroit, something the city paid $15 million a year to Brown to do, it’s no wonder this building caught Johnson’s eye more than most. A reporter found a dead body in one elevator shaft while reporting on the structure in 2009, it took authorities two days to cut him from the frozen ice that has filled most of the hospital now. From rampant graffiti art, to thousands of pages of medical paperwork left behind and messages of warnings of dead inside, this is just one of many regular sites in the former motor capital of the world.
(All Photographs courtesy of Robert Johnson for Pixable)