Week XI Artist Interview- Jerry Pena and Kyle Kruse

This week in the art galleries, I met Jerry Pena and Kyle Kruse. When I walked into their gallery the lighting and vibe immediately and completely changed! This caught my attention because the gallery was not just a space for them to display their artwork, but they had completely transformed it into an art experience. The décor added so much dimension that seemed to make walking into their gallery feel more like walking down the streets of Downtown Hollywood on a college night.

When I spoke to Kruse, I learned that the feeling that I got when I walked through the door was the exact emotion he hoped to convey. He explained that he was inspired by the environment of the area that he grew up in and hoped to channel those roots and show them to the rest of the world. Pena added that every piece of trash that littered the floor of their gallery served as some kind of symbolic representation of a piece of their story and was absolutely necessary to communicate their message.

My favorite piece was the back wall of the gallery, where there were giant signs that suggest “beer and wine” inside of a liquor store or bar. This definitely reminds me of nights wandering the city with my friends. Even though my story is much different from the one Pena and Kruse are sharing, we can relate on the very basic level that we grew up doing similar things in similar environments. I’m surprised at how much emotion they were able to evoke in me! Thank you for creating such an emotional and heart-jerking experience!

Beer and Wine (11)


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