Virtual Tour of Jack Shure ‘Soul Sanitizer’ and Reen Barrera’s ‘Cluster Fudge’

Thinkspace presents a virtual tour through Jack Shure’s ‘Soul Sanitizer’ and Reen Barrera’s ‘Cluster Fudge’.

Click here to explore the virtual tour: https://players.cupix.com/p/HfqfOR2G

Both exhibitions now on view through June 26th.

Virtual tour created by Birdman Photos.

Interview with Jack Shure for “Soul Sanitizer”

Thinkspace Projects is honored to present Jack Shure’s debut solo exhibition “Soul Sanitizer.”

‘Soul Sanitizer’ is a collection of work created to represent how Jack Shure views and digests the world around him. Made up of an amalgamation of styles and subjects, Shure creates an intentionally cryptic narrative of his own personal journey from childhood to parenthood. Using art as a tool for comprehension and processing, the act of creating work becomes his “soul sanitizer,” the vehicle for healing and introspection.

In anticipation for “Soul Sanitizer,” our interview with Jack Shure discusses tapping into creative flow, Beetle Juice, and exploring his subconscious through his work.

For those unfamiliar with your work, can you tell us a little about your background and how you came to work with Thinkspace Projects?

I got my start drawing very young and always kept a sketch book. By the time I got to high school I put a silkscreen press in my parents garage I would spend all my time out there then sell the shirts to kids who sold weed after class. Once out of high school a close friend took me to my first Grateful Dead ( minus jerry) concert. Here I saw many kids my age selling art and it inspired me to do the same. For the better half of 10 years I spent my time on the road selling posters in  parking lots around the country.

I bought a piece from the gallery some years ago and always admired their programming and taste. When I felt my art was ready I reached out to Andrew and immediately felt welcomed and supported.

What is the inspiration behind this latest body of work? What themes or techniques were you exploring?

The inspiration behind these works spawned from the creative influences of my youth. I wanted to revisit themes and nuances of the things that drove me to paint in the first place all while creating a personal narrative around the characters and symbols.

What do you find to be the most challenging and yet most rewarding part of the creative process?

Taking things too seriously, I constantly remind myself I make the best marks when I’m at play.

Do you have any rituals that help you tap into a creative flow?

I like to take a moment to breathe and thank creative spirit. I also enjoy dancing like a complete freak in between Strokes.

Who are some of your creative influences that have inspired you or had a direct impact on the  development of your artistic voice?

 Rick Griffin, Mati Klarwein and Corvaggio would probably be at the top.

Iconographgy from Beetlejuice can be seen throughout your work, do you remember the first time you saw that movie? Why has it left such a lasting impression?   

I’m pretty sure I was about eight or nine. I just remember being drawn in by the set design, prosthetics, and non-human characters more than the story itself. Something about the creepy yet goofy ambiance really stuck with me and fits well in my work naturally.

If you could download any skill into your brain, what would it be?

Akido

You’ve shared your work helps you process life and is self-reflective, has there been a piece you’ve worked on that while developing it has illuminated an aspect of your human experience that gave you a new perspective? Could you share the shift?

Every painting has a little taste of it and often reveals itself in ways that can be very mysterious until I understand why my subconscious chose it to begin with. For example, I often choose a subject or symbol that pertains to a significant moment or change in my life, I add these symbols together and they take on a new story that is congruent with my current state. Almost as if the painting is putting the pieces of the story together for me.

What has been the most surprising aspect of fatherhood?

My child is due in October but thus far I’d have to say the introspective journey it has taken me on, really taking inventory of every part of myself and personality.

If an ice cream flavor was made inspired by your work, what would be the ingredients and name of the pint?

Coconut based vanilla with some raspberry and blueberry swirls and it’s called spazz money.

“Cluster Fudge” by Reen Barrera coming June 5 to Thinkspace Projects

Thinkspace Projects is thrilled to present Reen Barrera’s newest solo show, ‘Cluster Fudge.’ Following his most recent show at Pintô Art Museum in the Philippines, Barrera is bringing his work to Los Angeles. 

Barrera has taken the idiom “it’s written all over your face” to heart and beyond, crafting his work around a central character he created early on in his career as an artist. Ohlala embodies Barrera’s thoughts, displaying them through a variety of colors painted on the being’s face. This serves as a mechanism to silently communicate, focusing on the unspoken rather than what is loud and clear. 

‘Cluster Fudge’ is a collection of work that pulls from facial expressions, allowing Barrera to turn experiences into artwork, taking the literal and mixing it up with symbols and patterns. Through acrylic, oil, and aerosol he crafts this work, embracing accidents like drips, smudges, and splatters, allowing these to lead him to the final product. 

“In some artworks, I discreetly take socioeconomic classes. Some people are born rich, mid class, some are poor. But the common ground is, everybody has no choice but to deal with it. So I cover all their heads with a canvas cloth to give OhLala the freedom to paint their own symbols on their heads as if they are designing their own fate. And I guess that is what we all have in common, the power to make things happen for ourselves.”

Using Ohlala as the great unifier, Barrera tackles the idea of difference and circumstance, removing all physical indications and allowing a blank slate. He effectively creates a universe where Ohlala could be anyone, even Barrera himself. In what is quite possibly Reen Barrera’s most personal collection to date, he represents and depicts several experiences that have helped create the artist that he is today, all with Ohlala as the subject.

‘Cluster Fudge’ opens June 5, 2021. On view until June 26, 2021 at Thinkspace Projects.

About Reen Barrera

Born in Paris, France, in 1990, Reen Barrera spent his childhood recreating his favorite cartoons with papier-mâché’. As a teenager, he repaired wooden church statues and would keep the excess wood scraps to make toys and figures out of. He naturally circled back into this practice after graduating from art school. With “Ohlala’ being the omphalos to his universe, Barrera presents a colorful commentary based on personal experiences. 

Video Tour of Millo’s “At The Crack of Dawn” & Mando Marie’s “Tell Me About It”

Millo – “At The Crack of Dawn

Mando Marie – “Tell Me All About It

On view: May 1, 2021 – May 22, 2021

EXCERPT FROM MILLO INTERVIEW

What is your favorite part of the creative process?

Sketching, it’s the first thing I do in the morning, still in my pajamas, with no coffee. I just slide from the bed to the kitchen table and I start to draw. It’s a kind of unconscious behavior, and that’s the part I prefer the most and that’s for sure where I got my best ideas.

Click Here for Full Interview

EXCERPT FROM MANDO MARIE INTERVIEW

There is a child-like whimsy to your work; how do you tap into your inner child?

There is whimsy, of course, but I think if someone looks at my work and only sees child-like, then they are missing the heft of the message.  I do tap that inner child, but I don’t know how I get there, or why I gravitate towards youth in my work … actually maybe I do know, youth is magnetic, and that helps explain why I’m drawn to it.  I think you can explore dangerous, brave, intense and important themes while still using youth to deliver the message…it’s maybe even better that way.  

Click Here for Full Interview

Video by Birdman