The Motor City was the first industrial boom town in America to experience massive corporate disinvestment. And in the wake of the global financial crash in 2008, two long-festering narratives went viral:
On one hand media makers relished in pornographic ruin, documenting empty factories and abandoned homes as a spectacle of urban decay. On the other hand Detroit was celebrated as a playground for young and privileged creatives to rebuild. Inclusionary, home-grown alternatives faded into obscurity.
Paper Tiger debunks these media myths and charts communities’ reactions to gentrifying forces. PTTV ventures outside mainstream cultural frames, plotting the racially-fraught history alongside devoted efforts of reclamation. At the ground level, a radical transformation of human relationships is taking root.