Artist Spotlight: Richard Talamantez

The GMRENCEN is Detroit’s most iconic building. It’s at the forefront of just about every photo representing Detroit. You know what it looks like from the outside, but what about the inside? It’s filled with cars, history and art that make up the Motor City.


If you’ve never been inside the building, or haven’t been in years, local photographer Richard Talamantez invites you inside the GMRENCEN as he takes over the building’s Instagram account from Sunday, March 1 through Saturday, March 14 to show you how much the building has changed and the things that make it so memorable. Sit back and let Richard be your guide to experience the GMRENCEN like never before.


Meet Richard



Four years ago, Richard Talamantez and his wife, Chelsea, had just gotten married and were looking for a new place to call home. The two ultimately decided to settle in Detroit, moving across the country from California.


Now, Talamantez works in downtown Detroit. In his free time, he walks around the city capturing anything that catches his eye.


“I like what’s happening in Detroit,” he says. Despite Talamantez getting his start in photography 10 years ago shooting for the professional world, he has since shifted his focus to the people and places in Detroit. “I just fell in love with the city.”


Step Inside


Because he works downtown, Talamantez takes his camera with him on his walk to and from the parking structure, shooting as he goes. And he’s always been drawn to the GMRENCEN.


“The exterior of the GMRENCEN is very photogenic, but everyone sees the building from the outside,” he says. “To me, the interior is just as striking and there’s a lot of visually interesting things going on in there that I think people should see.”


For Talamantez’s interior takeover, expect to start outside the Jefferson Lobby and travel inside to explore the different sights, shapes, colors and more, all from his perspective.


Artful Architecture


According to Talamantez, he was initially blown away by Detroit, particularly by the vibrant history incorporated into the city’s planning. When comparing the city to his previous hometown in downtown Los Angeles, he felt Detroit has significantly more history in its architecture.


“Every time I go out to shoot with other photographers, everyone sees something completely different from one another, such as settings, tones, etc.,” Talamantez says. “That type of diversity makes the experience even richer.”


As for the GMRENCEN, which stands out far from the rest of the city’s skyline, its bold art and architecture are part of the experience, like the glass Borealis art installation found in the Jefferson Lobby.


Motor City Metal



Because Talamantez’s photography is guided by whatever catches his eye, there are plenty of pit stops during his visits to the GMRENCEN. As a car guy living near the Motor City, he’d be remiss if he didn’t experience GM World.


Keep your seatbelt on and enjoy the ride as Talamantez takes you on a cruise through not one but two GM World displays. While the first is a throwback exhibition showcasing the eight generations of Corvette, the other is every driver’s dream featuring brightly colored sportscars.


Come Full Circle


With Talamantez as a guide, you will see the GMRENCEN from his perspective.


“Everyone photographs the city because it’s pretty,” he adds. “I want to use my photography to be the eyes of someone who’s not from the area.”


In his interior takeover, he’ll show off what happens at the GMRENCEN, helping you navigate through the towering levels and winding walkways that lead to the offices, restaurants and stores.


Dine Detroit


Detroit is known as a dining destination, and the GMRENCEN is no exception. As you discover more about the building, keep an eye out for the unparalleled views of Detroit’s hottest restaurant: Highlands.


Talamantez’s first time at Highlands was for a romantic dinner on Christmas Eve. Ever since that night, he knew he had to return to see more of Detroit’s only sky restaurant with the best views of the city. Now you can explore Highlands with him. After all, food, drinks and the views are just better 71 stories up.


Detroit, Inside and Out



“The GMRENCEN is a guide for the city,” he says. “You know where you’re at in Detroit when you see the top of the GMRENCEN.”


Though it’s undeniable that the GMRENCEN is a forever recognizable piece of the city’s skyline, it’s truly what’s on the inside that counts.


From the glass walls and ceilings that let in natural light, to the concrete pillars that hold up its substantial structure, and the glass atrium that opens to the bustling Riverfront – Talamantez is here to show what the GMRENCEN is really made of.


Richard Talamantez works in Detroit and lives in Trenton. Follow him on Instagram to see more of his work.