Filipino artist Reen Barerra will open his Cluster Fudge solo at Thinkspace on Saturday evening (6.5) with a new collection of hand-painted wood + fabric sculptures as well as original paintings. Many of the sculptures and paintings feature Barerra’s recurring Ohlala character, an expressive reflection of individuals from all walks of life—some rich, some poor, some old and some young —all with a story to tell. Conceptually the character is an embodiment of the common expression, “it’s written all over your face.”
Barrera crafts each sculpture in wood by hand, a practice he began as a teenager as a pastime from his work of repairing wood church statues. Though each is unique, they each share slender, lanky proportions and an unmistakable presence. The Ohlala pieces feature rounded faces that seem to share a common visual vocabulary of recurring patterns and symbols, many of the natural world. Barrera’s wraps each figure’s head in blank canvas, a symbol of the unwritten path that lies ahead for each of us. The show features two sizes of Ohlala sculptures – 8.5″ & 20.5″. Each sculpture features a hand-painted wood box.
In addition to Ohlala, the show features sculptures of Tori, a square-headed character with a white and red face. While Tori arguably has an arguably more uniform and less expressive face, the character expresses itself, in part, through defiant hand gestures.
For more information on Barrera’s solo and the public opening—masks and social distancing required—see Thinkspace’s show page. Also be sure to check out the gallery’s interview with the artist. Finally check out the studio visit video below for a look at the artist’s sculpture-making process.
Cluster Fudge | Reen Barrera
Opening: Saturday, June 5, 2021 (5-9 PM)
4217 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90016