Inaugural Alabama Triennial exhibition at UAB’s AEIVA to exclusively feature Alabama artists

This exciting recurring exhibition from June 10-Aug. 12 will feature some of the best and brightest contemporary Alabama artists working today.
  • Erin LeAnn Mitchell, "What you don’t have in your head, you’ve got to have in your feet," 2021. Acrylic, spray paint, fabric appliqué and spangle on canvas, 60 inches x 60 inches. Courtesy of the artist ©️ Erin LeAnn Mitchell.

  • Jillian Marie Browning, "Thick Skin," 2022, cyanotype. Courtesy of the artist ©️ Jillian Marie Browning.

  • Tony Bingham, "Ancestral Light Capture: Broken bottle glass as lenses for Camera obscura # 1," 2020. Pinhole photo negative/ photomural, 12 feet x 10 feet. Courtesy of the artist ©️Tony Bingham.

2022 AEIVA Alabama Triennial events:
- Artist Erin LeAnn Mitchell in conversation with AEIVA’s John Fields at 5 p.m. Friday, June 10, followed by a free opening reception at 6 p.m.
- A free screening of selected films by artist Lily Ahree Siegel, 6 p.m. Thursday, July 28.
- Free closing reception and Alabama Triennial book release party 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 12, with “rapid-fire” artist talks from many participating Alabama Triennial artists.

A new exhibition will exclusively showcase works by artists who were either born or are currently living in Alabama, at the University of Alabama at Birmingham from June 10-Aug. 12.

The 2022 Alabama Triennial is curated by UAB’s Abroms-Engel Institute for the Visual Arts. The triennial will fill all AEIVA’s exhibition spaces. This exciting recurring exhibition will feature some of the best and brightest contemporary Alabama artists working today. An opening reception, free and open to the public, will be at 6 p.m. Friday, June 10, in AEIVA. A conversation with artist Erin LeAnn Mitchell will take place at 5 p.m. prior to the reception. A closing reception and book release party is at 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 12.

The first iteration of the Alabama Triennial is curated by The Lydia Cheney and Jim Sokol Endowed Director of AEIVA John Fields and AEIVA Assistant Curator Tina Ruggieri. Future iterations will be curated by guest curators from around the region.

Selections will include a wide range of artists of different ages, cultures, interests and artistic mediums. The show includes painting, photography, sculpture, textiles, neon, video, sound art, printmaking and more.

Alabama has not always done a great job over the decades of acknowledging the talent in our own backyard, Fields says. 

“There are so many artists working in Alabama right now who are operating at a high level of sophistication — artists who have significant careers in places other than their home state,” Fields said. “I also see this exhibition as a community-building endeavor. So many of this first batch of artists are meeting each other for the very first time through this exhibition, even though they are working just a few miles down the road from each other.”   

Artists featured in the 2022 Alabama Triennial at AEIVA include:

  • Tony Bingham
  • Jillian Marie Browning
  • Annie Kammerer Butrus
  • Tameca Cole
  • Derek Cracco
  • Lauren Frances Evans
  • Steven Mark Finley Jr.
  • Sydney A Foster
  • Roscoe Hall
  • Chintia Kirana
  • Jonathan Lanier
  • Jasper Lee
  • Erin LeAnn Mitchell
  • Lily Reeves
  • Missy Roll
  • Lily Ahree Siegel

Each triennial will present a solo exhibition alongside the bigger exhibit to recognize and feature an Alabama artist of particular significance. For the inaugural event, a solo presentation of works by Mitchell, titled “What you don’t have in your head you’ve got to have in your feet,” will accompany the exhibition. Mitchell’s exhibition will occupy AEIVA’s Gallery One. 

“We hope this exhibition will surprise, provoke and challenge viewers by presenting ideas and viewpoints from such a diverse group,” Ruggieri said. “The breadth of creativity and talent is abundant in the state of Alabama, and this is a small selection we feel highlights that talent. Many of the artists took this opportunity to create new works specifically for this show and take conceptual risks they might not have otherwise.”