BIO: (b. Newark, NJ) The daughter of immigrants from Spain, Josephine Barreiro hails from Newark, NJ and cites street art, specifically that of the urban center, as the groundwork for her gestural and energetic technique and as the inspiration for her work. Her deep-seated love for graffiti, street art and abstract expressionism gives way to a body of work that is laced with emotion, spontaneous energy, and personal cultural memory. Josephine was featured in The Newark Artists Photo Documentary Project in 2018. Josephine's works were exhibited at Pen and Brush Gallery, NYC, where she created a live painting during the exhibition. She was also featured in a NYC-ARTS segment in 2016. Josephine earned her MFA in Fine Arts and MA in Art Education at New Jersey City University; she holds a BFA from the School of Visual Arts, NY.
Josephine has exhibited at the The Fountain Street Fine Arts Gallery, Framingham, MA; Joyce Gordon Gallery, Oakland, CA; Pen + Brush Gallery, Wilmer Jennings Gallery, New York, NY; Hall of Fame Gallery- BCC, Bronx, NY; Human Rights Institute Gallery, James Howe Gallery, Union, NJ; Paul Robeson Gallery, City Without Walls, 27 Mix, L.I.P.S, Index Art, Newark, NJ; Distillery Art Gallery, L.I.T.M, Harold B.- Lemmerman Gallery, Jersey City, NJ; Valley Arts Gallery, Orange, NJ; Ben Shahn Gallery, Paterson, NJ; Raritan Valley Community College, Somerville, NJ; Monmouth Museum, Lincroft NJ; The Arts Guild, Rahway, NJ and UCCS Galleries of Contemporary Art, Colorado Springs, CO; among other locations.
As long as I can remember I've made art. As a young girl alone with my imagination, I had the time of my life scribbling on my bedroom walls with crayons. My walls were murals, spontaneously bursting with flowing, rhythmic lines, shapes and vibrant colors.
My art is a journey of cultural memories and life experiences fueled by passion and raw emotion. My large color canvases show the influence of my Spanish heritage and early 20th Century Spanish painters, Street Art and Abstract Expressionists. My smaller black and white works refer directly to the emotions we all feel, “some” portraying our socio-political situation with gestural figures or animals who share our predicament. Animal characteristic's serve as metaphors exemplifying pain, love, sorrow, joy, anxiety and anger. My goal is to present images illustrating the human condition and all its complexity.
My process is ritualistic. Creating works of art I achieve a meditative state; my sense of time is suspended, while my focus returns me to the pleasure I felt as a child in Newark, filling my walls with color. Whether I'm working with color or creating monochrome collage paintings, I look forward to the visceral experience of painting by building the surface layers, I illustrate real and imagined situations. The act of painting is an avenue that delivers ideas from my center to a tangible surface.