Fairy Doors of Ann Arbor

210 S Main St Ann Arbor

Art and Theater in Ann Arbor/Fairy Doors of Ann Arbor
Written By VAMONDE Ann Arbor

The Fairy Doors

The Fairy Doors of Ann Arbor are a type of installation art that is comprised of a series of small doors around the city. The first one appeared in 1993 in the baseboards of the home of Jonathan and Kathleen Wright, and several others were discovered in their home. It wasn't until April 7, 2005 that the first door was seen in public, outside Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea. There have since been ten more doors pop up.


The first public fairy door appeared outside Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea on April 7, 2005. It was installed by Jonathan B. Wright, a teacher of graphic design technologies. Throughout 2005 a series of these public doors was installed. Some locations include outside the Selo-Shevel Art Gallery; The Ark concert hall; and the gift store Red Shoes. Doors located outside Jefferson Market and the Ann Arbor Framing Co. vanished when the stores closed. The ninth door was installed in the back of Nicola's Books on September 8, 2006 and was built into a bookcase and books at the Ann Arbor District Library on November 4, 2006.

In 2010 a rural fairy door appeared in a not-for profit preschool and dependent older adult day care in Dexter, Mighigan called Generations Together. It is said to have a portal that can be found in Gordon Field which is in front of Gordon Hall a historic landmark in Dexter. At one time a few establishments kept guest books which visitors could sign or ask pertinent questions or draw pictures. This led Wright to release the children's book Who's Behind the Fairy Doors?

Other Doors & The Goblin Door

The fairy doors have made appearances in the neighboring towns as well. An Ypsilanti woman found a fairy door in the base of a tree on her front lawn. Saline, to the southwest, held a "Fairy Door Treasure Hunt"event in the spring of 2010. Nearby Dexter held a fairy door art exhibition and contest around the same time and plans to hold it annually. The goblin door is a "sinister" version of the fairy doors and is a little taller than them. It is in Ann Arbor between The Ark and Seyfried Jewelers on South Main St. As of July 2012, downtown Ann Arbor locksmith Vogel's has arranged a mass of keys to form the word "Fairy Door," hinting that there may be a new fairy door to come.

Cover image by Dwight Burdette - Own work, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=14662558. Information courtesy of Wikipedia.

Art and Theater in Ann Arbor

Fairy Doors of Ann Arbor

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