What happens when you take one of over 20,000 abandoned homes in Detroit and call attention to it in the middle of winter … by pouring gallon after gallon of water over the roof until it is covered from top to bottom – windows, walls, plants and all – with ice?

For one thing, the resulting crystals are incredible – unique frozen snowflakes, but super-sized and surrounding every square inch of this installation art project. Moreover, making this structure melt-proof during the day is tougher than you might imagine. Cross-breezes, continuously-added liquid and other cooling strategies were employed to keep the ‘icing’ on this project.

Aesthetics aside, however, this ‘remodel’ is of course designed to remind people of just how many homes are left to rot in our current economic crisis as well as in general within the city limits of hard-up towns like this poster-child Michigan city

.A collaborative project by photographer Greg Holm and Mathew Radune, this Ice House structure – already bound for destruction – will be demolished after the architectural installation is complete and the proceeds as well as the property itself will go to deserving local family for reuse and, ultimately, the reconstruction of a replacement home.