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COMMUNITY ARTS

Create Birmingham envisions a region where art plays a key role in creating a more inclusive and vibrant community. We believe that community arts projects should center artistic impact and experience while also advancing equity.

Each community arts project is an opportunity to bring local artists and community members together to create context and connection in the present while celebrating our rich history and shaping our shared future. 

Create Birmingham offers free professional development for local artists and nonprofits and serves as a key creative partner for local organizations, businesses, and municipalities. We also provide resources and information on local, regional, and national opportunities for Birmingham area artists.

Photo Credit: Ambre Amari

CITY OF BIRMINGHAM COMMUNITY ARTS GRANT PROGRAM

This grant program will support four community arts collaborations that benefit the City of Birmingham with grants of $10,000 each. Funded projects will take place between March 1 and December 1, 2023. Each collaboration supported will be a partnership between an artist or arts organization and a community organization. The primary partner must have nonprofit status and be located within the municipality of the City of Birmingham. Funded projects will use the arts to address an issue impacting the City of Birmingham and will be accessible to the general public. Examples of issues addressed include civic advocacy and engagement, public health or safety, racial justice, restorative justice, education, and social or legal services. Collaborations eligible for funding include workshops, performances, concerts, festivals, demonstrations, screenings, and readings. Projects may be new collaborations or continuations of existing work.

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THE COMIC STRIP CHALLENGE

Create Birmingham, in partnership with CreateHubs leaders Eric Pertilla and Kristena Hatcher, is excited to launch a monthly comic strip competition and publication for the residents of Jefferson County, Alabama. This initiative is meant to encourage creatives of all ages to explore job opportunities and career pathways in creative industries. In an effort to better engage with role models in the industry, we are delighted to share all submissions with an outstanding group of industry leaders who will serve as judges.

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THE CURB MAKERS MARKET IN TRUSSVILLE

Create Birmingham is partnering with The Curb to present a community arts event and makers market, showcasing outstanding creative work in Trussville. We are co-hosting two markets in 2022 to support participating artists and makers. The first market was held on Saturday, June 4th. The second market will be held on Friday, November 25. Applications from interested artists and makers are currently being accepted.

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ALABAMA PREMIERE of Thumbs Up for Mother Universe: Stories from the Life of Lonnie Holley, a Film by George King

On October 20, Create Birmingham, in partnership with the Birmingham Museum of Art, presented the Alabama premiere of Thumbs Up For Mother Universe Stories from the Life of Lonnie Holley. This feature-length documentary traces the dramatic life of American artist Lonnie Holley from his impoverished beginnings and educational opportunities to becoming a revered visual artist and musician. The film also reveals Holley’s creative process—his insights into conservation, ecology and the environment, and his sources of deep inspiration rooted in the spirit, southern life and African American history and culture.

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ASPHALT ART INITIATIVE IN SMITHFIELD

Create Birmingham served as the arts partner for the City of Birmingham on a public art project in the Smithfield neighborhood to enhance the intersection of 8th Avenue West and Center Street, working in collaboration with Smithfield stakeholders, the Smithfield Public Library, and local visual artist Lydia Walker. Made possible by a grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies' Asphalt Art Initiative, the collaborative installation of a new intersection mural took place on Saturday, October 15th.

Photo Credit: Ambre Amari

THE WORLD GAMES YES PROGRAM

The World Games 2022 and Create Birmingham created a workshop series to help young entrepreneurs develop their marketing skills. Students attended five virtual workshops and developed business strategies to implement during The World Games 2022. Each student had a booth at The World Games Merchant Market, with the opportunity to showcase and sell products to an international market. .

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GRAFFICA LIVE!

Film Birmingham / Create Birmingham supported GRAFFICA LIVE!, a free public event on April 23, 2022 that was held in conjunction with and funded in part by the Magic City Poetry Festival. The evening, hosted by T. Marie King, featured live performances by artists from the film including Artist/Creator/Director Yogi Dada; African Drum Company Sahi Ohn Ko Djony; and dancers from ASFA performing choreography by Germaul Barnes.

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MAGIC CITY ART CONNECTION CULTURAL PARTNER

Create Birmingham joined the 39th Magic City Art Connection as a premier Cultural Partner on April 22 - 24, 2022. This partnership extends to providing a professional platform for the region's artists, leadership appointments for young adults, volunteer and exhibition training for high school and university students, and a place for our best nonprofit cultural organizations to meet an enthusiastic audience.