Walter Hood StoryMap

Walter Hood StoryMap

This AADN StoryMap investigates Places through the lens of the work of Walter Hood and social art and design practice Hood Design Studio, Inc. Founded in 1992, the Oakland, California based studio has produced renowned landscapes for museums like the De Young in San Francisco, the Cooper Hewitt in New York City, and the Broad in Los Angeles.

Interactive StoryMap

In addition to his well known landscape-based creations for arts institutions, Hood has used innovative design and urbanism in communities throughout the United States to rediscover history that has been erased through abandonment or demolished by urban renewal. Follow along with this StoryMap to explore some of Hood’s most iconic works, and explore his transformative visions for urban landscapes inhabited by historically African-American communities.

 

I use design art to help people see something that’s no longer there.

Walter Hood

Hood’s featured work involves the Phillips Community, a South Carolina neighborhood established by freedmen as a rural agricultural village in the 1870s, the Rosa Parks neighborhood, the former heart of African American business and retail in Detroit and origin place of the 1967 Detroit riots, and LaVilla, an African-American enclave west of downtown Jacksonville, Florida that was largely razed in the name of 1900s urban renewal.

West Forsyth Street near Jefferson Street in LaVilla's Railroad Row (1928)

West Forsyth Street near Jefferson Street in LaVilla's Railroad Row (1928)

George W. Simons Jr.

Spatializing Hood’s Work

In 2019, Walter Hood was awarded the Macarthur Fellowship, known as the “Genius Grant.” He has been appointed as the Spring 2021 Senior Loeb Scholar at Harvard Graduate School of Design. His restorative work in places synonymous with Black American culture illustrates the power of Black designers to preserve history and build community. Click here to engage with the Walter Hood StoryMap.