JAILBREAK is an art studio, gallery, resource center, and storefront showcasing new work created by local black and indigenous people of color, queer, and female emerging artists.
JAILBREAK is the transformation of Jailhouse Studios, a female-run creative workspace since 2011, named after the history of the building. In 1905, the building was erected for the Southeast Portland Police. The space was originally equipped with one main room for the officers to share desk space, one private office for the Chief of Police, and a single jail cell in the back.
Today, our mission is to grow our platform for underrepresented emerging artists and Portlanders who want to maintain and grow the culture of our city. We have created a resource center and classroom connected to a storefront and gallery that provides technical and educational growth resources, bringing together a network of creatives, and offering visibility and autonomy for local artists as part of this mission. JAILBREAK opens a new dialogue for the whole community to participate in maintaining and growing our art scene.
We are all facing difficulties navigating this pandemic, with many of us experiencing financial stresses. If you happen to be a person that is not experiencing financial hardship, we ask you to consider supporting JAILBREAK staying in business. Like many others, we have had our doors closed for over a month now due to Covid-19. We need help paying our rent, utilities, and wages so we can re-open our doors when the time comes.
We are so proud of the community of artists and teachers involved in JAILBREAK and we hope we continue to have the space to provide a platform for underrepresented emerging artists in Portland. You can support JAILBREAK and this community of artists by purchasing work on our new online shop.
ARTISTS AT JAILBREAK
Proudly representing her Oregon roots here in Portland, Oregon, Ursula graduated in 2010 with a BFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art. She then created a series of large paintings inspired by her rainy bike commutes over the many bridges of Portland. This series was the beginning of her fascination with weather, architectural landscapes, and bridges.
In 2011 she founded Jailhouse Studios, a female run creative work space and gallery named after the history of the building, which was erected in 1905 for the Southeast Portland Police. This same year was the beginning of her mural career.
Finding joy in the physicality of large-scale painting, she began to paint any walls and odd spaces she could find. This inspiration from her environment created an obsession with travel early in Ursula’s career. She lived in South America, traveled all 50 states, visited architecture in Europe and was awarded a mural grant to live in Mexico in 2016. Travel has become and will continue to be the backbone of her process.
In recent years, Ursula has also grown to work and collaborate with talented local designers, manufacturers and small businesses, expanding her UB product line illustrating urban landscapes and creating accessible and sustainable products. In December 2018, this ongoing collaboration helped Ursula transform Jailhouse Studios into Jailbreak Studios, an art studio, gallery, resource center and storefront promoting locally made unique objects, handmade jewelry, home goods and apparel created by people of color, queer, and female emerging artists. Through Jailbreak Studios, Ursula continues to push freedom of thought and creativity with the collaboration and support of other creatives.
To view Ursula's work, visit: ursulabarton.com