The Upstairs Downstairs Door set is two doors that were designed and painted by Ba Bonno Velanti of Diitabiki, Suriname, South America. It was made for a missionary couple. The house in which Ms. Rubinowitz owned was the house these doors were on. The other door to the set was given to ACM in 2010.
One door was positioned on the bottom floor which is about four feet above ground. The other door was used as an upstairs door that opened onto a balcony that was just about four feet deep.
The iconography of the doors is simple and direct. Half the door is an abstraction of a Cessna airplane. The other half, a motor... the engine that gets the flying machine from one place to the other. On on door the propeller or kinetic energy is still...and on the other door it seems to be in motion, alive. Ba Bonno stated that he painted the doors as airplane motifs because he said "the planes were their tie to the coast where they came from" (meaning the missionaries).
Janina Rubinowitz Collection, Anacostia Community Museum, Smithsonian Insitution, gift of the estate of Janina Rubinowitz