Photo Tour of Reen Barrera’s ‘Emotional Meat,’ Spime’s ‘Fish Out of Filtered Water’ and Michael Gates’ New Works

Thinkspace presents a photo tour of Reen BarreraEmotional Meat’ in Gallery I, Spime ‘Fish Out of Filtered Water’ showing in Gallery II and Michael Gates New Works in the Viewing Room.

All exhibitions are on view at Thinkspace Projects now through July 29, 2023.

Photos by @BirdManPhotos.

Continue reading Photo Tour of Reen Barrera’s ‘Emotional Meat,’ Spime’s ‘Fish Out of Filtered Water’ and Michael Gates’ New Works

Video Tour & Opening Reception Party of July 2023 Exhibitions featuring Reen Barrera, Spime, Benzilla, Sarah Joncas, Cody Jimenez and Mister Toledo at Thinkspace Projects

What an awesome opening night this past Saturday at Thinkspace Projects. We love to see so many art lovers and collectors supporting and enjoying such a wonderful group of artists as they show off their work. It was an absolute blast, thank you for coming out to support and celebrate with us.

Big shout out to all of this month’s exhibiting creatives as well, we do this all for you and we are blessed to be able to do so. Thank you.

Gallery I
Reen Barrera is back with his largest solo show to date with us, ‘Emotional Meat.

Gallery II
Spime brings her new collection ‘Fish Out of Filtered Water.’

Gallery III
Benzilla, born Parinya Sirisinsuk, brings his beloved three-eyed alien ‘LOOOK’ with ‘Alter Ego.’

Gallery IV
Sarah Joncas returns for her new solo show ‘Upon Another Shore.’

Plus as an added bonus we have new ceramic works from Michael Gates in our viewing room & a new collection of works on canvas and paper from local artist Cody Jimenez in the Dog House Gallery.

Shout out to GoopMassta for bringing the vibes in our courtyard all evening long alongside Cody Jimenez, Fabez, LeCash, Nora Inu, John Michael Gill, Kabob Senpai, Liquid Death, Venice Beats & Digital Debris Video Gallery – the community continues to grow!

Don’t miss these great new collections on display through July 29th. Visit us Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 6pm. Please note the Dog House Gallery and our courtyard are only open for viewing on Saturdays. Free and open to all.

Exhibition on view July 8 – July 29, 2023 at:

Thinkspace Projects
4207 W. Jefferson Blvd. + 4217 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Los Angeles, California 90016

Video + photos courtesy @BirdManPhotos

Continue reading Video Tour & Opening Reception Party of July 2023 Exhibitions featuring Reen Barrera, Spime, Benzilla, Sarah Joncas, Cody Jimenez and Mister Toledo at Thinkspace Projects

Interview with Michael Gates for New Works | Exhibition July 8 – July 29, 2023

Thinkspace is excited to present New Works by Michael Gates who is multi-generational pottery maker based in Asheville, North Carolina where he studied art at the University of North Carolina Greensboro and Deakin University in Australia graduating with a fine arts degree in 2001. After some time spent traveling and painting, exhibiting in group shows, he is back in Asheville, NC where he returned to working with clay. He uses traditional methods of wood firing and digging clay from the same locations as his ancestors, while at the same time, embracing advancements in the field and forging a unique path ahead.

Our interview with Michael discusses his creative process, his inspirations and influences, and about his 6-generation Reinhardt pottery tradition.

Can you share a little about your background and how you first heard of Thinkspace?

As typically said, I was a big drawer as a kid. I also grew up surrounded by my great grandfather’s pottery in the house. Following the path of my interests, I got a college degree in Art, ceramics concentration. I then traveled around some, worked in graphic design, painting and ultimately made it back to clay. I obsess in the studio daily usually with music playing, or podcasts, which is probably where I first heard of Thinkspace.

What was the inspiration behind this body of work?

I love the idea of combining the simple historic pottery of my ancestors with ideas of the complex, rapidly changing times we are in. The unknown, psychedelia, spiritual, online culture, tech, ceramic history, urban culture are all inspiring. I love having a little fun with these ideas.

What does a day in the studio look like for you? How do you structure your days?

I always begin with coffee, and the sketchbook which I’ve always had handy as long as I can remember. Then, on to the studio, I do what needs to be done in the ceramic process, or choose something new to start on from the sketchbook, often working into the night hours.

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

Seeing online what others are making, talking to artist friends, and getting that sense of community going really seems to help… and coffee

What is your most favorite and least favorite part of the creative process?
Who are some of your creative influences?

Favorite would be working on the fine details such as underglaze painting and slip trailing. Least favorite is large coverage glazing and cleaning that up.
Influences are the potters of the Catawba Valley, NC pottery tradition. Other early influences were surrealists like Dali, Magritte, and more recently Murakami, Ryden, English…

What was your trial and error process like in fostering your pottery skills? Do you utilize any family tips or tricks in your process?

Learning the limitations of the clay bodies and different kiln environments was the most important part of the sculptural aspect. Lots of testing of clays and glazes in the early days was crucial. Having the art school education really made for a solid foundation and deep well.
I was definitely obsessed at one time with my families pottery history, duplicating the swirl-ware technique, the forms, alkaline glazes, copying the whimsical face jugs, firing in the same wood kilns, and even digging from the same clay pits. All of this is still a part of my process in some way.

If you could have any skill or topic downloaded into your brain, what would you want to be able to do/ be an expert at?

Some kind of productivity skill would be top priority. Seems like I’m always struggling to be more productive.

What has been one of the most rewarding aspects of your creative journey thus far?

It’s been fulfilling to continue the Reinhardt pottery tradition going back at least six generations. Also, sparking artistic interest in my kids, and hearing from others that I have inspired them are nice.

Who would be on the guest list if you could throw a dinner party for five people, dead or alive? What would be on the menu? What would be the icebreaker question?

I’m not sure if this is the best combination, but I’d for sure want my great grandfather Enoch Reinhardt to pick his brain about pottery. And I guess you can’t not have Jesus there…and going even further back, the Buddha also to make things interesting. Dave Chapelle for some comic relief. Marilyn Monroe maybe, for the stories of course.
The menu, water to be turned into wine served in a large Rebecca Pitcher. Selfishly I’d choose Indian food and lots of desserts.
Start off with asking: what’s your favorite work of art?

Exhibition on view July 8 – July 29, 2023 at:
Thinkspace Projects
4217 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Los Angeles, California 90016

Interview with Sentrock for ‘Two Birds, One Stone’ | Exhibition June 3 – June 24, 2023

Thinkspace is excited to present Sentrock Two Birds, One Stone’  which highlights the dichotomy of who he is as an artist and who he is as a person, bringing to light the relatable internal struggle of simultaneously being more than just one thing. The works highlight the times of his introspection, aiming to capture the raw energy or the fleeting moment. Through his creation, Sentrock has become a catalyst for his community. His work presents undertones of hope, freedom and expression, encapsulating his background, history, upbringing, empathy, and compassion for his community.

Our interview with Sentrock discusses his cocktail of choice, mentorship and community, about fatherhood and his ideal dream artist to collaborate with.

What was the inspiration behind this latest body of work? What themes were you exploring?

My inspiration for this body of work was to explore my internal reflections what or who I am as an individual, as an artist and as a person outside of that. Just allowing myself to create, based off that notion of who am I like what do I want as a person.

The last time we interviewed you, you were preparing for your museum exhibition at the Elmhurst Art Museum. How was that experience? You had several sculptural and animated elements in the exhibition, what was the process for making those concepts a reality?

The museum exhibition was amazing, the platform that a museum brings allowed me to vision my work through a different lens but also for the audience, I gave more of a story line with the art. I was able to dive deeper into the narrative and not just 2D but in a overall captivating way for the audience. The process deals with patience and trust, having an idea and working with some many moving parts you have to enjoy the process and trust the end result is worth it. Creating something that has value and impact takes time and understanding of what you want your audience to receive.

The opening of ‘The Boy Who Wanted to Fly’ had a signature, Paloma. Is that your favorite cocktail? If so, how would one make it. If not, what is your favorite drink to order when feeling fancy?

Haha anything with tequila is my favorite. Palomas are my go to when making them, so I figure why not give them out to the attendees. Paloma is my fancy drink but when I want to feel fancy and sophisticated I go for the Old Fashion.

Mentorship is important to you as an artist, not only helping young artist cultivate their voice but an understanding the business behind being a full-time artist. Who were some of the people who helped you learn the ropes early on?

I mean, yeah I wouldn’t have been into art if it wasn’t for a guest artists visiting my school. Mentorship is huge especially in my community, I want to continue to uplift my community and culture. I see a lot of the young latino community as my younger siblings. I was the oldest of 6 siblings, so it came natural.

Your mother helped to foster your creative practice and keep you out of trouble by giving you tools to be creative in your backyard. To other young artists who might not have that kind of support, what advice would you give them to not lose heart?

That’s tough because without some support, it’s like reaching for something you feel out of their grasps, I been there before as well. I would say just start from scratch, find any ways to create, when you have less that’s when the best ideas are cultivated.

Your father has played a notable role in inspiring your creative voice to dig into themes of freedom. And in your last exhibition with us, you were exploring those elements along with grappling with fatherhood yourself now. How has fatherhood influenced your art? What element of fatherhood is most rewarding at the moment and most challenging?

That’s a loaded question, I’ll get back to it after I speak to my therapist haha. The most rewarding part is knowing everything this kid knows or understands at this age is because what I have shown him, the smiles he has is because my playing with him or I showed him something funny. It’s really rewarding to know you can literally show this kid life, and introduce him to a live you want for him. All I can do right now is show up for him and give him love. The most challenging thing, is definitely the energy, learning to balance out the energy. You know the whole work / life balance thing.

What was in your musical rotation during the development of this body of work?

Definitely Drake haha but also a lot Mac Miller. I really listen to anything when in the studio. Mostly chill vibes though, bc I need to be able to chill out.

And do you have a favorite coffee brand? How do you take your coffee?

No real favorite. I take my son to Dunkin every morning on our morning walks so by default. Lol I love a good pour over v60 but dad life calls for a Dunkin, then in the afternoon I get a cappuccino.

If you could collaborate with any artists in any sort of medium (i.e. movies, music, painting), who would you collaborate with, and what would be making?

For sure, Kendrick Lamar. All his music and music videos are super inspirational.

What do you hope viewers take away or experience while viewing your work?

I think I want viewers to take more of a feeling away, like not necessarily my art technique or color palette but the idea of using art as an express tool, almost therapeutic.

How do you like to enjoy your time outside of the studio? Do you celebrate the completion of a body of work?

I would love to celebrate haha! Haven’t given myself a chance to slow down yet but a bottle of red wine, music and some friends is my usual .

Exhibition on view June 3 – June 24, 2023 at:
Thinkspace Projects
4207 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Los Angeles, California 90016

Interview with Benzilla for ‘Alter Ego’ | Exhibition July 8 – July 29, 2023

Thinkspace is excited to present new work by Benzilla, born Parinya Sirisinsuk. ‘Alter Ego’ challenges boundaries, ignites contemplation, and humbly invites viewers to explore the intricate complexities of our world. With his signature 3-eyed alien “LOOOK,” Benzilla guides viewers through an exploration of paradox. Within the depths of each of us exists both the fiercest enemy and the most loyal companion. In these works that span mediums, Benzilla urges viewers to engage in a conversation with their inner selves, listening intently for answers. Weaving together traditional painting, spray paint, and graphic art, Benzilla welcomes audiences to delve into the realm of curiosity and embark on an enlightening journey through the artistic.

Our interview with Benzilla explains the inspiration behind his recent solo show with Thinkspace, the birth of his signature three-eyed alien “LOOOK,” and how living in Bangkok has encouraged the act of introspection.

Can you share a little about your background and how you first heard of Thinkspace?

I was born and raised in downtown Bangkok, living in a modest house. Growing up, I was exposed to rock and hip-hop music from the US and Japan, which influenced my interest. Pop Culture activities were also a significant part of my childhood and sparked my interest in creating things.

After graduating from a design school, I have been involved in painting, street art, and exploring various fields of art, including typography and character design. I first learned about Thinkspace through social media a few years ago and noticed their collaborations with talented artists.

What was the inspiration behind this body of work? What was the most challenging piece?

For this exhibition ALTER EGO, my aim is to incorporate thought-provoking messages beneath my colorful artwork. I want to capture the essence of our social media-driven society, where we often lose control of our minds as we spend hours on screens and compare ourselves to others. Drawing inspiration from my Buddhist upbringing, I’ve created two characters as metaphors for the inner workings of the mind. The completion of my first piece, “Inside,” was particularly challenging, and it sets the tone for the rest of the collection, reminding viewers of the motto that guides me: “being mindful of our own mind.”

What does a day in the studio look like for you? How do you structure your days?

Normally I paint day and night. Breakfast and tea and jump to morning paint session, Someday going out for lunch that helps to relax. The most productive time is at night but I want to move the main session to an early morning. It might be better to work with a fresh brain.

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

First thing I will search for something to listen to. I love to listen history documentary or sport podcasts while painting. It helps to keep a focus

What is your most favorite and least favorite part of the creative process?

I like putting the finishing touches on a painting—it’s my favorite part. However, I find it difficult to deal with a blank canvas when time is running out—that’s my least favorite part.

Who are some of your creative influences?

One of my teacher when I was in university. At that time I was a bottom rank in the class. He taught how to open the a doors of possibility to create anything.

When did you first start to develop what would eventually become your signature three-eyed alien “LOOOK”? What advice would you give to artists working on fostering a creative voice?

I created the Loook character about 10 years ago when I had difficulty connecting with friends who shared similar hobbies, interests, and perspectives. I wanted to convey the concept of being an outsider.

The Loook character doesn’t resemble a human or animal; it’s a creature from another realm. Its distinctive feature is three large eyes that symbolize its ability to observe and understand the complexities of our society and the chaotic nature of the world. The creative voice within me plays a crucial role in my work and daily life, providing motivation to create a meaningful body of work.

If you could have any skill or topic downloaded into your brain, what would you want to be able to do/ be an expert at?

I want to have a time travel skill to see how is a legendary artist work on their canvas

Your work encourages the act of introspection. What have you found to be your guiding principles for how you move through life?

I live in an unstable city affected by economic and political problems, which have a significant impact on people’s lives. Our world is going through many changes, including potential crises like food and water scarcity and ongoing conflicts. In this situation, I want to develop a peaceful mindset as a core principle of life and share it with my daughter. Through my work, I aim to communicate this message, while also considering other ideas for the future.

Who would be on the guest list if you could throw a dinner party for five people, dead or alive? What would be on the menu? What would be the icebreaker question?

  • Henri Matisse
  • David Hockney
  • Keith Haring
  • Stanley Kubrick
  • Flea

Thai spicy dinner would be great and I will ask them about the movie they love to watch.

Exhibition on view July 8 – July 29, 2023 at:
Thinkspace Projects
4207 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Los Angeles, California 90016