You may have seen our posters for The Great Receipt Race in the windows or on the walls of you’re favorite Birmingham small business. But, do you know the artist behind the original piece of artwork? Meet Birmingham native Erin Mitchell, an interdisciplinary artist. Her work has been featured on the hit FOX drama, “Empire” and she previously served as an art teacher in Chicago before returning home.
We recently asked her a few questions about her work as well as the importance of supporting local artists, especially right now.
Q: You’re an accomplished artist whose work has been featured on TV. You’ve also recently relocated back to Birmingham from Chicago. What about Birmingham brought you back?
A: The change of pace brought me back to Birmingham. I was looking for space and breathing room to create. I also had a goal to paint a mural in the city, which I was able to accomplish in Ensley. (on Ave F, down the street from Morgan Pediatrics) In returning to the environment most fruitful to my practice, I also found my locale added another layer to the meaning of my work.
Q: You mentioned that moving back to Birmingham added another layer of meaning to your work. Can you expound on that?
A: The shift allowed my art to speak directly to the audience it’s influenced by and be a representative of black southern stories in spaces still limiting their diversity of work.
Q: Your work features different colors, textures and patterns. Recently, you designed the poster for REV’s Great Receipt Race. What were you hoping to convey in that piece?
A: I want the design to convey a call to action through the motion of the figure (made of receipts) whipping through the city.
Q: The Great Receipt Race is all about everyone supporting small businesses by shopping locally. What does that type of support mean for Bham artists?
A: Artists are small businesses too and the same tactics help ensure our success and livelihood. Share, repost, PURCHASE, employ (and pay fairly) local Birmingham artists and creatives because we’re worth it.
Visit www.erinleannworks.com for more on Erin Mitchell.
Purchases from Birmingham small businesses can enter you to win gift cards from local restaurants and retailers during the Great Receipt Race this holiday season!
Get started by texting RACE to 267-TEXTREV (267-839-8738)!
If you’ve been following REV for a while, you probably remember The Big Pitch Competitions we used to hold back in the day. The Big Pitch presented by PNC was essentially our own little version of Shark Tank. And a lot of your favorite local businesses that participated in this competition now have active retail storefronts that you can go check out. Let’s start with some of our finalists that are based in the City of Birmingham and see what they’ve been up to!
Have you been to Downtown Birmingham’s newest development located on 25th Street? If not, you need to head down there ASAP and check it out! This new single story development is a product of a collaboration between David Baker Architects (DBA) and Locke General Contractors, led by DBA’s very own Amanda Loper. It is intended to be a “collaborative commercial space in a catalyst development area of Birmingham.” Both DBA and Locke General Contractors will be tenants of the space, along with June Coffee Roasters, Zephyr Barber, and Last Call Baking Cooperative!
One of Birmingham’s many hidden treasures is the music scene downtown. The sheer volume of concert venues we have in downtown Birmingham is something most people aren’t even aware of – but it really is remarkable! There is truly something for everyone, whether you’re into the smaller, more intimate venues or the large-scale venues for those big name artists. Keep reading to check out some of the cool venues downtown Birmingham has to offer.