CREEEAK! goes the screen door to Elijah Pierce’s barbershop. In Columbus, Ohio, a young boy walks in for an ordinary haircut and walks out having discovered an extraordinary collection of art—and the lifetime of stories that inspired it all.
Mr. Pierce’s wood carvings are in every corner of the small barbershop, which doubles as an art studio. With a pocketknife, Mr. Pierce creates animals, scenes from his own life, and even portrayals of the sociopolitical world around him. It’s
this collection of work that will eventually win Mr. Pierce the highest folk-art honor in the United States. But the young boy visiting the shop doesn’t know that yet. All he knows is: “You gotta meet Mr. Pierce!”
Based on the true story of artist Elijah Pierce and his community barbershop, this picture book biography is a new and engaging offering on a hidden figure in Black art history. Featuring charming text by Chiquita Mullins Lee and Carmella Van
Vleet, You Gotta Meet Mr. Pierce! The Storied Life of Folk Artist Elijah Pierceillustrates for the youngest readers that art is everywhere when you look for it. As Mr. Pierce says, “The more you look, the more you see.”