Barry’s Shop is a one of a kind art experience that combines a retail shop, working art studio, and learning/workshopspace in one space at 267 Western Ave, Allston. Barry’s Shop features events, programs, and a rotating collection of curated work by local and regional artists and designers open to the public each weekend from May 6 to June 5, 2016.
Barry’s Shop is a program of Zone 3, a Harvard-sparked initiative to explore experimental programs, events, and retail along Western Ave.
Curated and produced by Isenberg Projects, the Barry’s Shop retail experience pays homage to a traditional American grocery store, a classic symbol of commercialism and commerce. Rather than serving to cheapen the art found within, the grocery store feel of Barry’s Shop is instead an effort to break down traditional social and economic barriers that have made contemporary art inaccessible to most people. At Barry’s Shop, the artists are local, the art is not “hands off”, everything is for sale, and all the proceeds of each sale go back to the artist who created the item. In addition to the retail art shop, Barry’s Shop will also host a series of art events including drawing parties, screen-printing, metal hammering and curated ice cream sundaes.
In 1961, artist Claes Oldenburg opened an experimental store in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, five years after his official arrival in New York. For two months, Oldenburg hawked commonplace items that customers could find in any average store on the street: ice cream, oranges, cigarettes, hats, shoes, etc. However, the merchandise in Oldenberg’s store were specially crafted works of art the artist himself created to mimic common consumer products.
“This store will be constantly supplied with new objects, which I will create out of plaster and other materials in the rear half of the place. The objects will be for sale in The Store.” —Claes Oldenburg (1961)