photo taken by Arrielle Mock (IG: deathtomermaids)
In keeping with our trend of “Where are black people migrating” I wanted to share a super fulfilling experience I had this weekend, while out just casually dating myself. That’s not oversharing– it's just incredibly fun to go places alone sometimes. You can really take in all a space has to offer and how it links back to your personal lived experience.
So this Saturday I had the pleasure of popping out for “The Black Woman Is Art” at Filthy Americans. The event was the first exhibition of Detroit artist Miriam Hull AKA “ Mir”, showcasing black womanhood, fashion, music, and the full display of all emotions that those exhibit.
The event was another opportunity for creators here in Detroit to build new capacity, to the backdrop of Filthy Americans– a store and creative hub opened in 2020 by Detroit Grammy award winning producer Filthy Rockwell. It was my first time popping out there since it opened but the space was soundtracked by neo-soul, scented by burning incense and kept guard by “Whaddupdoe” shirts at every axis of the room. Needless to say, it was home.
Artist and vendor Kaila Starks said “Mir has become such an important person and great friend since the first time we hung out. I’ve gotten to see her progression in her craft. And I can feel the love and emotion she puts in every piece. Black women create space for everyone, rarely being extended the same grace. Mir always uses her opportunities to put other Black women and creatives on. She gave me the opportunity to sell my jewelry. The space was perfect for this art show.”
The show also featured painter Tia Talton, who collaborated with Mir on the featured piece “Black Woman is God”, and also featured spins from DJ Kaely Kellz.
Tia shared “I feel at home as a creative. It gives me inspiration to create more– like I want to go home and paint. This is special to me cause it's the first time my art is being showcased. Me and Mir collabed on a piece and it took alot of motivation but I Just thought alot about what this piece means and was able to get through it.
I caught a quick blurb from Mir about the event, just as the venue was starting to fill up and fast.
“I want to build on the brand, the black woman is art. It's a beautiful experience. I’m glad to be here and seeing black people creating together with love, light, and joy”
And that’s surely what it was. Amidst displacement and disrepair, black people here in Detroit continue to hustle and form new spaces, new communities, and new coalitions. In 2022, folk that aren’t embraced more broadly get it out the mud by forming their own counter-cultural teams to build leadership with.
As we celebrate this Pride Month, it's important that we are not just loving queer folk in private or because it’s in-trend, but because they are integral to cultural liberation here in America’s most creative city. At the heart of the community we can build across regions–across identities, is the development of leadership and dignity. It starts with indiepunc celebrations like “The Black Woman Is Art”
For more updates on art and events from Mir, follow on Insta @theartistmir