take an exclusive look at new carhartt fanzine 'sinners are welcome here'
Tonight, New York-based photographer and i-D contributor Stef Mitchell opens her first gallery show at Brooklyn’s Red Hook Labs. The exhibition also marks the launch of ‘Sinners are Welcome Here,’ a zine featuring friends wearing Carhartt.
Stef Mitchell and I met on July 17, 2014; that's almost exactly two years ago today, the opening night of Girl — Stef's first solo show of photographs and drawings. We'd been paired up to photograph portraits of Bed-Stuy residents for i-D, and set up outside Marcy Playground to catch G train riders and basketball nuts. We found ourselves drawn to the same passersby — a shirtless boy with a wing-tipped backpack, two brothers popping wheelies on their mountain bikes. Since then, i-D's had us hunt for Kanye superfans, kids with braces, and young queer people at NYC Pride. In the process, we've become more fluent in whatever bizarre language our brains communicate in. We buy the same pants at different stores. I have a family of ghosts Stef drew tattooed on my arm.
Sinners are Welcome Here, our first ever collaborative zine, is a kind of exchange between our shared obsessions. We began it with a firm rule, and it's the only one we followed: each and every item of clothing featured — and I mean all of them, socks included — is from my personal collection of Carhartt workwear (well, four of the 35 pieces were graciously loaned by three friends). To be clear, this stuff is not anywhere close to rare, or even expensive. I just feel connected to it. Carhartt reminds me a lot of where I grew up in Massachusetts; plus it makes interesting shapes and silhouettes. We photographed a mix of models and friends — each one brings something different and tender to clothes that are designed to be similar and utilitarian. The drawings and writings are super intuitive, things we came up with while watching the bathtub spaghetti scene in Gummo and listening to The Smiths. One of the sayings even appeared to Stef in a dream (see if you can guess which one). Mostly, we just thought it would be fun to do something creative completely for ourselves and see where it ended up.
'Girl' opens tonight at Red Hook Labs. 'Sinners Are Welcome Here' will be available in an edition of 150 signed and numbered copies. More information here.
Photography Stef Mitchell
Styling Emily Manning
Production George Koren
Casting Direction Casting by Us
Models Jackson and Achok at Red. Willy at IMG. Tyler at Request. Jasiri. Rhamier.
Special Thanks Red Hook Labs, Jimmy Moffat, Urban Jungle, Simone Kurland, Kate Gross, Kindall Almond, Dad.