Berlin artist Ryan Mendoza has saved Rosa Parks’ former Detroit home from the wrecking ball by transporting it to Berlin.
The three-bedroom house, where the civil rights activist lived during the 1950s, was donated to Mendoza by Parks’ relatives.
After suffering years of flood damage and break-ins, the building had been marked for demolition until Parks’ niece Rhea McCauley bought it for $500 from the city council in 2014.
McCauley was already familiar with Mendoza, who previously dismantled and re-assembled a Detroit house for an installation at Art Rotterdam.
The artist has rescued the building’s facade and parquet flooring, which he hopes to use to rebuild a replica in a secret Berlin location. Reportedly already fielding offers from major galleries, Mendoza has suggested the house could tour Europe or be installed on the White House lawn.
‘I hope either President Obama or his successor becomes sensitive to such issues and, in this instance, will catch word of the house that is held hostage across the world – a monument to Rosa Parks’ legacy that was purposely kidnapped in order for America to recognise what it has lost,’ says Mendoza.