Video tour of NEXUS III at the Brand Library & Art Center

Brand Library & Art Center presents:

NEXUS III – curated by Thinkspace Projects

On view virtually from November 7, 2020 through January 6, 2021

Featuring solo projects from:
YOSUKE UENO – Majestic Parade
THE PEREZ BROS – More Bounce
AMY SOL – Forest Dreams
LEON KEER – Contradictions
REEN BARRERA – Dull Maker
URIGINAL (aka URI MARTINEZ) – Sweet Rage

The Brand Library & Art Center and Thinkspace Projects are pleased to present Nexus III, showcasing a curated selection of international artists belonging to the New Contemporary Art Movement. This special exhibition will include mini solo shows from Yosuke Ueno, The Perez Bros, Amy Sol, Leon Keer, Reen Barrera and Uriginal (aka Uri Martinez).

Known for it’s renewed emphasis on figuration, representational genres, and narrative in the wake of art academe’s conceptual turn of the 90s, the New Contemporary Art Movement is shaped by a foundational countercultural edge, public activations, and its social impetus. Largely self-supported and community-driven, the movement has taken shape beyond gallery walls and outside of traditional institutional vetting. Now, as diverse and heterogeneous aesthetically as it is geographically and culturally expansive, the New Contemporary has come into its own as a globally energized art movement.

BRAND LIBRARY & ART CENTER:

Brand Library & Art Center has been a cornerstone for the arts in Southern California since 1956. This unique public library focuses on visual arts and music and provides free services and programs for a diverse community, including a collection of over 110,000 items, subject specialist librarians, exhibitions, concerts, lectures, dance performances, films, and hands-on craft programs for children and adults. Always evolving, Brand Library utilizes new technologies and continues to develop innovative programs to serve an ever-widening public interested in the arts. Brand Library & Art Center is a branch of the City of Glendale Library, Arts & Culture Department.

Interview with Reen Barrera for Nexus III at the Brand Library & Art Center

Reen Barrera explores the idea that regardless of what we say, our true feelings can still be emancipated by our facial expressions. The mix medium artist utilizes Acrylic, oil, and aerosol paint in his work as he interprets the silent way we communicate with symbols and patterns in his compositions. Starting with a loose abstract figure, he often lets accidental drips, smudges and splatter guide him as his stares down the empty canvas.

What was the inspiration behind the body of work that will be showing at the Brand Library & Art Center?

At the beginning of my journey as an artist, I was lucky enough to have this idea of a character that will embody my thoughts, thus giving life to this character Ohlala. Ohlala is a being whose face is painted with colors representing its current mood/situation, and covered with symbols which summarizes our life, the idea comes from the saying “its written all over your face”.

Do you have any pre-studio rituals that help you get into a creative flow?

I bore myself doing nothing for days and then come to the realization that I’m wasting my short time here on earth, that keeps me motivated all the time.

When you were working on this body of work, what were you listening to in the background? Do you have a different soundtrack for the various stages of the creative process? 

I recently bought a vintage turntable, I got addicted to its sound, it has definitely influenced my current state. I started the process with the classics like Etta James, and finish it up with Up Dharma Down, an amazing Filipino band. I discovered the I work easily with slow jams in the background.

Is there an artist or piece of work that has made a significant impact on you? Has that work influenced your own artistic voice/style? 

Jean-Michel Basquiat, David Choe, and Cecile Perra discovering and studying them religiously has impacted me a lot as an artist. The strengths of their works and the bravery of their ideas freed me from my comforts. 

What piece challenged you most in this body of work, and why?

Technically it’s the dolls that really challenged me, the amount of sewing that I did for the dolls are challenging, considering having no background in Tailoring. And the needle pokes really hurt.

What do you think will be said about the New Contemporary Art Movement in 100 years?

I’m fortunate as an artist to be alive at this era, because I’ve experienced the birth of the internet and I have benefited a lot from it, the possibilities are endless because it opens the world for you, learning a new skill has never been so easy. With that comes the endless possibilities for artist and their processes, Inspiration can come with just a click of a button. This era has been a mixture of experimental influences from the past and comfort zones has been broken a lot of times by artists, because they are backed up with the knowledge that inspires. This era has seen a lot of “First” like the Internet and it made us pioneers of the connected world. With that, knowing art as an evolving creature that follows and breaks the rules, I’m sure the future will find this era influential the same as we are influenced by the past.

For now, the Brand Library and Arts Center are unfortunately not welcoming visitors. This Saturday, November 7 at 1 pm we will go live on our Instagram to tour the show and we will also be sharing a professionally filmed video tour of the exhibitions on our Instagram and Facebook around that same time. A self-guided virtual tour will be shared shortly as well.

Interview with The Perez Brothers for Nexus III at the Brand Library & Art Center

Alumni of Otis College of Art and Design, The Perez Bros, are identical twin brothers Alejandro and Vicente from South Gate, CA. Exposed to Los Angeles car culture at a very young age, they are fascinated with everything in the scene from the cars to the models, the people to the music, and share a peek into that world through their paintings.

What was the inspiration behind the body of work that will be showing at the Brand Library & Art Center?

Growing up with our dad we would always go to lowrider car shows and cruise nights with him. Music is a really big part of the culture. One of our favorite songs that we would always listen to was More Bounce to the Ounce by Zapp. We wanted to sort of create some type of theme based around that song. The song has nothing to do with lowriders, but we like to connect it to lowrider car hoppers. So we decided to feature a car hopper in every one of the paintings in this show. 

Do you have any pre-studio rituals that help you get into a creative flow?

Every day after work, we go in to the studio and the first thing we do is take a long nap. Then we both eat a pepperoni hot pocket for breakfast. While we eat, we put on some music to get our creative flow going. Then we set up our paint stations and begin painting.

When you were working on this body of work, what were you both listening to in the background? Do you guys rock different soundtracks for the various stages of the creative process?

We listen to a lot of different types of music while painting. Nothing specific, but we usually stick to one artist or genre each day. Throughout the creation of More Bounce, we listened to a lot of Kid Cudi, Prayers, Tropa Magica, The Red Pears, Chicano Batman, Lowrider Oldies, and a lot more. We don’t really listen to a certain type of music for the various stages, it kind of just depends on what type of mood we are in that day.  

Is there an artist or piece of work that has made a significant impact on either of you? As a duo? Has that work influenced your own artistic voice/style(s)?

We look at a lot of different artists, but we don’t really draw inspiration from them. We get inspired through the city of Los Angeles, and the lowrider culture. We would have to say that it definitely influenced our lowrider paintings. But what inspired us to become a duo wasn’t artists duos, it was the Hardy Boys from WWE. As little kids, we actually wanted to become world tag team champions. We always thought it was so cool that they were doing something that they love together. We never became world tag team champions, but we did become a tag team in the art world. 

What piece challenged you most in this body of work, and why?

We feel that every piece that we do challenges us. Honestly we are always scared to start a new piece, because we feel as if we forgot how to paint. So every new piece feels like we are starting to learn how to paint all over again. But through this, we always seem to discover new techniques.

What do you think will be said about the New Contemporary Art Movement in 100 years?

Maybe it would be said that it was one of the largest art movements in art history. That it inspired a new generation of artist. 

For now, the Brand Library and Arts Center are unfortunately not welcoming visitors. This Saturday, November 7 at 1 pm we will go live on our Instagram to tour the show and we will also be sharing a professionally filmed video tour of the exhibitions on our Instagram and Facebook around that same time. A self-guided virtual tour will be shared shortly as well.

Coming Up November 7th at the Brand Library and Arts Center

Brand Library & Art Center presents:
NEXUS III – curated by Thinkspace Projects
November 7, 2020 through January 6, 2021

Featuring solo projects from:
YOSUKE UENO – Majestic Parade
THE PEREZ BROS – More Bounce
AMY SOL – Forest Dreams
LEON KEER – Luke Warm
REEN BARRERA – Dull Maker
URIGINAL (aka URI MARTINEZ) – Sweet Rage

Brand Library & Art Center and Thinkspace Projects are pleased to present Nexus III, showcasing a curated selection of international artists belonging to the New Contemporary Art Movement. This special exhibition will include mini solo shows from Yosuke Ueno, The Perez Bros, Amy Sol, Leon Keer, Reen Barrera and Uriginal (aka Uri Martinez).

Known for it’s renewed emphasis on figuration, representational genres, and narrative in the wake of art academe’s conceptual turn of the 90s, the New Contemporary Art Movement is shaped by a foundational countercultural edge, public activations, and its social impetus. Largely self-supported and community-driven, the movement has taken shape beyond gallery walls and outside of traditional institutional vetting. Now, as diverse and heterogeneous aesthetically as it is geographically and culturally expansive, the New Contemporary has come into its own as a globally energized art movement.

BRAND LIBRARY & ART CENTER: Brand Library & Art Center has been a cornerstone for the arts in Southern California since 1956. This unique public library focuses on visual arts and music and provides free services and programs for a diverse community, including a collection of over 110,000 items, subject specialist librarians, exhibitions, concerts, lectures, dance performances, films, and hands-on craft programs for children and adults. Always evolving, Brand Library utilizes new technologies and continues to develop innovative programs to serve an ever-widening public interested in the arts. Brand Library & Art Center is a branch of the City of Glendale Library, Arts & Culture Department.

YOSUKE UENO
Majestic Parade