By Mary Miller Cullins
It’s not everyday you meet someone as energetic, idealistic, and positive as James Bell, the founder and current CEO of Bell Enterprises. A few of his business adventures have included Bell Mini Mart, Celebrity Styles Barber Shop, Bell Real Estate, Bell Contracting, and namely, B&B Productions. That is how I met James Bell. A couple years ago, Lewis Reed, President of the Board of Aldermen, held a free event at city hall to help promote kids boxing programs and raise funds for the defunct boxing facilities in the city. St. Louis boxer, Devon Alexander had a fight the next evening and was honored at the party at city hall. James Bell saw a great opportunity to display the art work owned by his company, B&B Productions.
B&B Productions offers Soulful Creations, Urban Art, if you will. The artists capture energy, emotion, and pieces of history through portraits, replicas of photos, and album covers. They also include a variety of beautiful, abstract drawings and paintings. The art is created using air brush, oil, water color, or pen and pencil.
You will find the art of B&B, not only on canvas and paper, but on clothing, furniture, hats, and yes, even cars. Currently, the works of two of the B&B artists, Jerome “Pharaoh” Clark and Edward Tramble Bey, are on display at the Board of Aldermen offices in Room 230 of City Hall.
St. Louis is a mecca for art, music, sports, and historical landmarks. James Bell and the local talent he nurtures, focuses on the many talented people that began their careers in this city. Various portraits include, Nelly, Bonita Cornute, Cedric the Entertainer, Devon and Corey Spinks, Mayor Freeman Bosley Jr., and Jermaine Dupri.
Bell Enterprises is not the only focus for James Bell. He loves his St. Louis community and is always busy giving back in some way. For over fifteen years, Bell coached children’s baseball and football at Matthew Dickey Boys and Girls Club, he dedicated three years to the Nehemiah clean-up effort sponsored by St. Alphonsus “Rock” Church, and participated in the “Kids At Play” playground construction projects at Cole, Dunbar, and Columbia schools.
You can “Like” B&B Productions on FaceBook to see more art by these talented, local artists and to contact James Bell. Of course, if you have to pay a visit to city hall this summer, stop by the Board of Aldermen for a look, the art will be displayed through September!