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"Get to know me"

Please tell us about yourself and to the audience.


My name is Denzel Palm, a self-taught artist from Detroit, Michigan. I started my art career roughly two years ago. As a self-taught artist, I started out using Acrylic paint and Crayola Crayon as my two main mediums. I have hosted two of my own solo-exhibitions here in Detroit, Michigan. Titled, First Semester & Second Semester. “First Semester” was a showing of 40 paintings using both Acrylic and Crayola Crayon. “Second Semester” was composed of 28 Crayola wall sculptures that vary in shape and size.


Outside of hosting my own exhibitions, I have participated in the DON Weekend Art Gallery with Boys & Girls Club in partnership with the Sean Anderson Foundation.


Currently, I am just exploring my creative side and really enjoying it. It has been fun to be able to share a piece of me with friends, family and my community. 


Tell us about your art? Why did you choose to do art?


I was mainly looking for a way to express myself and share more of myself with my family, friends, and community. When I first started painting, I just wanted artwork for my apartment. I couldn’t afford to purchase anything at that time, so why not give it a try. People would come over and ask where I got some of my pieces I made and I would always laugh and tell them I made it. It was always a great shock to them, because I wasn't traditionally known for making artwork. It felt good to start with a blank canvas and create something from nothing. Just being able to have an idea and transform it into something tangible for others to experience gave me so much satisfaction.


Full of color, positivity, and an experience are a few words that I would use to describe my artwork. A big goal of mine when I create a piece, is that I want the viewer to experience something new every time they visit/view the piece. To be able to notice something new or be moved in a new way.


What Does Your Artwork Represent? Does your art represent something about you? 


My recent work, creating Crayola Wall Sculptures is meant to represent staying true and appreciating your individuality but still finding everlasting connections with friends, family, and your community. It’s about remembering that you can still shine as an individual star, but there is so much beauty and enjoyment in being a part of the larger picture. You have so many amazing colors within a Crayola box. There are so many unique colors, but when you get to pairing them with one another, you see the real magic. The pieces I create with molds are meant to represent individuality, no two are the same. The colors of the pieces are the variety of emotions humans experience. By connecting the pieces together, I create an interaction between the colors. While you view my artwork as a whole, you will notice the full effect of a color gradient or color contrast. Both are intended to make you feel something through color relationships.   


For me, I believe my artwork is a true testament that we as people, are always a work in progress. As we get older and wiser, we change as people. Learn new skills, find new passions, strive for new goals. We should never allow society to place us in a box and be constricted by the limitations of that box.


What Inspires You? What connection do you have to your art?


I get a lot of inspiration from those that don’t allow society to place them into a box. Majority of the time people like to place others in a “box”, so they can get a grasp of who that person might be. People like Curtis Jackson, Seth Rogan, Kanye West, Pharrell Williams and Donald Glover might be known for one thing, but they didn’t allow society to bind them to that one profession or passion. They expanded their talents, learned new things, and fell in love with other passions. It speaks so much to people’s growth and ability to develop. We all should be proud that we will forever be works in progress, learning and changing every day.


My artwork is just truly a piece of who I am. A person that is all-in on growing as a person and learning more in the process. At one point of time, I think the majority of people would have just classified me as a basketball player. I played basketball in high school and college, so that is what people knew me for. Due to injury, I closed that chapter in my life. But, I was always looking for a way to share more of myself with those people around me. That form of expression turned out to be art.


How long have you been doing art? 


Roughly two years. I just started creating these 2-D Crayola sculptures last year, in March. Very excited to see where things take me.


At the end of the day, where do you want to see your artwork?


People’s homes! For me, having artwork in my living space just made my living space that much more enjoyable. Art at home can keep you in an uplifted and positive mood. It can brighten up your space, it can be the centerpiece of a room, and it can start conversation. There is so much good that art can do in people’s homes. I want people to enjoy their homes and create vibes within their space that allow them to blossom and become the best version of themselves. Inspiration at home can do so much for you.  


If you could collaborate with one artist who would it be?


Right now, I would say Josh Sperling. I love what he is doing with shapes, color & texture. I for sure would say his work is truly an experience. Definitely a fan of what he is doing and excited to see what he does next.


Who inspires you to do art? Are you the only artist in your family?


I would say a big inspiration for me to continue down my artist path is Phil Simpson, from Detroit, MI. I met Phil when I just graduated from college in 2015. He was running The Baltimore Gallery in Detroit and I would stop by the gallery every now and then. Phil has a very welcoming energy about him and he always opened the doors for me. The funny part about all of this, is that I did even have an appetite to create art at this time. I was just a fan of everything he was doing, and I guess I kind of gravitated towards that Gallery. I’m not sure if he even remembers me, but I’ve been a fan for a while.


I am the only one in my family that is a traditional “artist”. But both of my parents are extremely fashionable and I think a lot of creativity steamed from that. Any form of self-expression to me is art. I would even consider basketball a form of art and my father played at U of D Mercy and overseas for some years.



What do you have coming up in the future? Anything you would like to share with us?


Currently I am working on a furniture installation that is going to be placed in Detroit Is The New Black, Downtown Detroit. It will be a combination of different color side tables & stools with a few other things.


Outside of that, I think my next big project will be Summer of 2022 maybe. Not too sure, but I’m excited to share more with the public and work with others.

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