Beauty Debate 

A group invitational exploring the concept of beauty

What: A group invitational exploring the concept of beauty, curated by

Where: Art Effect Gallery, 1420 E. Fisher Fwy., Detroit; 313-566-0062.

When: Opening reception from 8 to 10 p.m. Saturday, March 3, with a charity preview from 6:30 to 8 p.m. A corresponding panel discussion takes place at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 29. Beauty Debate displays through April 21.

For its inaugural annual invitational, invited 18 artists to explore prevailing ideas about beauty in contemporary art. At its most basic, the exhibit questions the very definition of beauty, and if any accepted understanding is even necessary in the context of art. The works also delve into how ideas about beauty relate to gender and sexuality, as well as the contemporary art world's relationship to beauty: Is it ignored, dismissed, undervalued or rightly disregarded? 

The exhibit includes both established and up-and-coming artists from New York, California, Indiana and Michigan. Participants include Tim White-Sobieski, an internationally acclaimed multimedia artist, Clarina Bezzola, a nationally recognized performance artist, and Man Bartlett, a New York-based artist who's rising on the national scene. The local scene is represented by artists Topher Crowder, Brian Barr, Lauren Rice, William Irving Singer, Ron Zakrin and Geno Harris.

To preview the exhibit, is also hosting an actual beauty debate in the form of a panel discussion featuring some of the participating artists and local art critics. The panel will provide a lively overview of some of the key topics presented in the exhibit, giving viewers a taste of what they can expect from the artwork. According to Colin Darke, artist, writer and editor of, "We put the show and the panel together to foster a continued and robust art dialogue in Detroit." The show and panel also serve as springboards for the eventual establishment of an art criticism writing fellowship administered by the website. To that end, a charity preview precedes the opening that includes first glimpse at the artwork and a fashion show featuring Morada Blue Swimwear.

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