Graffiti Vs. Art: Detroit Grapples With the Question

Mural in Detroit

On abandoned buildings and bridge abutments, sidewalks and signs, Detroit is covered with graffiti--and Detroit mayor Mike Duggan doesn't like it.In a campaign to clean up the streets, Duggan dispatched inspectors along the city's major arteries to ticket vandals with spray cans, charging them with malicious destruction of property.  The Detroit Police Graffiti Task Force identifies graffiti artists and imposes fines and penalties ranging from a fine to a lengthy jail term.But in a city … [Read more...]

Barbie and Ken Meet Mary, Jesus and the Difunta Correa

Barbie as Mary

Oh, Barbie, how you've changed!"Barbie, the Plastic Religion" is the title for an exhibition opening October 11 in Buenos Aires, which features the 1950s power couple dressed as figures in various world religions.Marianela Perelli and Pool Paolini, two artists from Argentina, have created 33 dolls which represent figures from Catholicism, Judaism, Buddhism and Islam.Here is Barbie as a blonde Virgin Mary:And here, a crucified Christ on the Cross looks remarkably like Barbie's … [Read more...]

Beauty Meets Grace in Detroit’s Historic Churches


My fingers tugged at the wrapper, and I held my breath as I rushed to open Detroit’s Historic Places of Worship.  I’d visited many of Detroit’s oldest churches through the years, and I was looking forward to reviewing this new book; but I was delighted by the explosion of color and fine detail on every page of this beautiful coffee table book, released in September 2012 by Wayne State University Press.“Churches and synagogues have played a crucial role in Detroit for generations,” said Nancy … [Read more...]