Week of 8.21.17

Welcome to the home of Social Lights. New online reports with photos appear each week on the website and in the monthly print editions for the Birmingham-Bloomfield area and the Rochester-Rochester Hills area at the start of each month. If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

MOCAD Interchange Art + Dinner

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit and Library Street Collective gallery owners JJ and Anthony Curis collaborated on a remarkable event that turned their home – the  Hawkins Ferry house – into a museum. Under the title “Unobstructed Views,” 39 pieces of art, all available for bids, had been installed throughout the modernist gem on the shore of Lake St. Clair. More than 200 guests ($175, $200 ticket) and their conversation invigorated both floors of the museum and the lakeside terrace. Guests included legendary sculptor Glen Michaels, who recalled creating many installations for the home’s architect Bill Kessler. Art collector Shirley Piku was another guest with specific memories.
This weeks social light photos…


oakland confidential

August 2017

HORSE RACES: Democratic aspirations of taking a majority hold on Congress after the 2018 General Election will hinge on the party’s ability to take two dozen congressional seats, which may include upsets in Michigan’s 8th and 11th Districts, according to recent rankings of 82 districts by The New York Times. The piece split the districts into eight groups to watch, based on competitiveness ...more»
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Salon renovation planned in Rochester

08/11/2017 - The building at 130 E. Fourth Street in downtown Rochester will undergo a contemporary facelift as plans for facade modifications for a new Strafigo beauty salon were approved on Monday, August 7, by the city's planning commission.

Architect Roman Bonislawski, of Ron and Roman in Birmingham, said that despite only leasing the location from the building owner, the salon owner intends to invest a significant amount to update the appearance of the building. The space is currently occupied by Hair Unlimited, but will be reoccupied by incoming salon Strafigo.

The outside remodeling will move the building from an existing white and gray building to shades of bronze. The current bay window will be updated to a tall glass window with bronze trim, and columns along the front porch will be painted with copper and trimmed caps. A concrete planted bed along E. Fourth Street with topiary style evergreens will be installed, as well as new signage with the entire building being repainted and updated.

"The existing building is a non-descript white siding dwelling with no distinct architectural features," city planner Vidya Krishnan said in her assessment to planning commissioners. "The proposed changes creates a visually interesting facade and creates a unique storefront identity for the business which is more contemporary."

Commissioners unanimously approved the plan.

Banislawski said the style of the facade is contemporary but uses a minimalist approach with the exterior treatment that will help to clean up the existing building and allow the business to be show well.

"We are talking about a successful Italian salon keeper who travels to Europe frequently," he said. "He has carved out a successful niche in his market and has a particular atmosphere."

Strafigo founder Rino Marra and co-owner Kristina Marra operate Figo Salon in downtown Birmingham. They are both master hair stylists, with Rino having more than 17 years of experience. The salon is founded on the idea of promoting continuous education and training to "provide clients with a superior salon experience through the harmonious fusion of superb hair, design, fashion and customer service."

The design work at the building is being done by Ron and Roman, which specializes in interior design and architecture. The firm has established itself as one of the premier designers in the commercial business market, responsible for hundreds of contemporary restaurant designs and other commercial locations.

"I think that area and building needs lot of love," said Rochester Mayor Cathy Daldin, who sits on the planning commission. "It's hard because Rochester is an older community, but I think it's better than what is there. Sometimes you have to try different things in a community."

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