The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD) is a non-collecting contemporary art museum in the heart of Detroit's cultural center. Housed in a 22,000-square-foot building that was once a former auto dealership and converted into an innovative and industrial-style gallery space by architect Andrew Zago, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit displays an artist blend of contemporary visual, literary, music and performing arts.


© Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)

The mission of MOCAD is to be a responsive center where diverse audiences comprised of artists and visitors can encounter the very best in contemporary literary, music, visual, and performing arts that the city has to offer. MOCAD presents a range of art that educates, interprets, contextualizes and expands, giving visitors an unrivaled contemporary experience.

The Space

Nestled between the Detroit Institute of the Arts, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the College for Creative Studies, and the Wayne State University, MOCAD functions as a hub for artists and visitors alike to explore new and emerging ideas in the contemporary arts. An innovative addition to Detroit’s vibrant Midtown neighborhood, the Museum has been stylishly renovated into a modern industrial space with vast, flexible chambers, yet still maintaining its historic character. The new design makes the building ideal for exhibiting contemporary and modern art, which it does through several exhibitions in the Museum throughout the year.

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© Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)

MOCAD features a permanent artwork by the late artist Mike Kelley known as ‘Mike Kelley’s Mobile Homestead.’ Located on the grounds of the Museum, the artwork is both an example of private architecture and a full-scale public sculpture of the single-story ranch-style house in which Kelley grew up. Replicating the vernacular architecture of working class neighborhoods in the American Midwest similar to the one in which Kelley grew up, the artwork aims to bring the city back into the suburbs. The house was designed to be detached and driven to neighborhoods throughout the city where it would act as a flexible community center for exhibitions, displays, projects, and events that were relevant to the local community and establishing a dialogue with them.

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© Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)

MOCAD offers an exciting series of educational and community-based programs for all ages, including literary readings, lectures, films, musical performances, and educational activities for children. Educational initiatives include MOCAD Teen Council, a Young People’s Biennial Opening Reception, and a K-12 Teacher Advisory Board.

Art as a Social Force is an initiative that MOCAD runs that is inspired by Mike Kelley’s Mobile Homestead and involves a multi-year examination of artists who are looking to establish socially transformative and participatory art.

MOCAD also hosts an array of artistic, literary, and musical events throughout the year, featuring internationally acclaimed artists such as performance artists like Pat Oleszko, Jody Oberfelder, and Will Power; musicians such as Michael Yonkers, Roy Ayers, Pink Reason, Amp Fiddler, Roscoe Mitchell, Dan Deacon’s Round Robin, and Marlon Magas; and writers included Bill Berkson and John Giorno. Other events held at MOCAD include a Valentine’s Day dance party, the screening of films from Prelinger Archives: Lost Landscapes of Detroit and Love Sick, and various fundraisers for the Museum.

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4.Visitor Information

Visitor Information
© Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD) is located at 4454 Woodward Avenue in Detroit and is open to the public on Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday from 11:00 am to 5: 00 pm, and Thursday and Friday from 11:00 am to 8:00 pm. The Museum has an eatery known as Café 78 which serves an array of light meals, snacks and drinks, and Museum Store that sells a variety of unique art-related merchandise, specialized art and culture books, journals, and magazines, as well as limited edition artists T-shirts and other functional objects d’art.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD) can be rented for special events and functions with over 22,000 square feet of flexible and versatile space that can be used for meetings and presentations, product launches, galas and receptions, weddings, receptions and other celebrations.

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4454 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201, Phone: 313-832-6622

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Things to Do in Detroit, MI: Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)

  • Mission, Photo: Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)
  • Exhibitions, Photo: Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)
  • Education, Photo: Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)
  • Visitor Information, Photo: Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)
  • Cover Photo: Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)