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 Wednesday - Monday 11am to Sundown [6pm or later] and every First Friday from 6pm - 9pm.
Jailbreak is the transformation of Jailhouse Studios, a female run creative work space 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 under represented 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 store front 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.
In 1902 the building we now call Jailbreak was erected as the first southeast Police Department, built on land that belongs to the Chinook, Cowlitz, and Clackamas tribes. Honoring the land we live on and the accuracy of history matters, acknowledgement matters, showing respect is required. 🌎 If you are interested in learning more about the tribes and land you have built your life on, and you would like to honor the people who came before you, the Native Land app is free, and owned and operated by the Indigenous non profit Native Land Digital. A good place to start.
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
Bethany is a retail-maven-turned-business consultant with a passion for people, art, and business. Her personal and professional pursuits lead her from her childhood home of Spokane, WA to the island of Maui HI, Venice CA, and now Portland, OR where she’s lived and worked for the past six years.
In each of these cities, Bethany’s passion for both business and connecting with people bolstered companies like The Gap, Alice in Hulaland, Tamara Catz, and Goorin Bros. to develop strong teams in building and sharing the stories of their brands, establishing dynamic systems for managing operations, and growing their businesses with intention, creativity, and honesty.
During the summer of 2017, when she was working as an independent business consultant, Bethany was introduced to Ursula Barton’s work when she came across one of her murals. Soon after, she stumbled on an ad Ursula had placed for an artists’ assistant and was eager to meet and connect. Upon meeting, it was clear to both Bethany and Ursula they had a lot to learn from one another and were eager to begin working as a team. After working collaboratively for 2+ years, Bethany and Ursula have joined forces, this time as partners, to launch the newly minted Jailbreak Studios, a unique boutique and gallery.
Jailbreak fulfills Bethany’s long-time dream of opening a retail space that encourages self-expression, activism, and gives back to her community. Now as she embraces her role as co-founder and co-owner of Jailbreak Studios, a space intended to be a platform for people of all walks of life to work collaboratively and shine, it’s clear that she’s just where she needs to be, within a community she loves.