Art + Culture

Q+A: Joe Bloch of Creativebloch

Creativebloch is a studio that produces highly artful and vibrant acrylic paintings.  Art and painting lessons are also available.  We sat down with owner Joe Bloch to learn more about his art.

What makes Creativebloch unique?

Creativebloch is a unique studio/gallery/shop in the Shops at 145 Front Street in DUMBO Brooklyn. What makes us different is that we create art, showcase emerging artists, and open to the public for art lovers to buy art and novelty items. We are a flexible space that adapts to what we want to achieve. We configure the space for our resident artists to work at times, alter it to create a gallery for local artists, and shuffle things around to enhance it for retail for the public. We support community efforts to keep art and artists in DUMBO, while promoting artists worldwide through our extensive social media platform. We are a studio, gallery, collaborative art community, and more.

What first inspired you to open the space?

I shared a large loft studio at 20 Jay with 20 artists. Unfortunately, due to progress, the artist loft was closed and converted into office space. I wanted to stay in DUMBO so found the space with Green Desk to develop the Creativebloch Brand. Getting out of the studio and into a commercial/retail space has helped with exposure.

Why did you choose DUMBO as a location?

I’ve always loved DUMBO for its post-industrial vibe and creative culture. It’s interesting that it has served fine artists as well as the tech industry at the same time. The parks are a great source of inspiration and relaxation. DUMBO is not like Manhattan, nor like Brooklyn. It is its own unique area and community.

How does your previous art background influence your efforts now?

I’ve been an artist my whole career. I started as a medical illustrator and spent time at UCLA and Cornell Medical Centers and published a lot of work in Brain Surgery and Pain Management. I’ve bounced around a few internet startups, and landed in advertising and art. I’m a true creative, I eat , sleep and breathe ideas all day and night. My advertising career pushes my strategic and logical side and my art pushes my creative expressive side. It’s quite a balancing act.

>What kind of art do you specialize in?  Any particular styles or themes?

My art right now is a heavily textured acrylic style reminiscent of impressionist, expressionist and sometime surrealistic works. I merge concepts from street art, classical techniques, urban themes, and design elements. I paint old buildings, factories, portraits, industrial landscapes and more. My work is used in commercial applications, editorial articles and for fine art purposes.

How do you choose which artists to showcase?

I curate many applications and review a lot of work. I look for something unique that resonates with me. The style doesn’t matter, it is the overall impression I get of the work. Most of the work I choose in not like mine. I also look for passion from an artist and a reason for what they do. I look for a certain creative outlook and process.

Your last show Urban Ubiquity was a huge success.  Could you share some details about this event and the artists that were represented?

Sure. Our last show was fantastic, we had hundreds of visitors. I selected my favorite works from hundreds of submissions. It was tough selecting only 15 pieces from hundreds. We had so many choices. So we went with 1 piece from 15 artists for the show. Some of the art was even commissioned for the show. Some of the artists represented included Chad Martin, Chris Dacs, Danny Maloney, Linda Rolon, David Bransfield and Deepika Ross, all NYC artists. Amazing talent, and quite a range of mediums.

What kind of shows can we look forward to?

Right now we are back in “creation” mode, but we will definitely open up for some Open Studios, and possibly a larger show in the Spring. We have a new artist in residence, Alejandro Caiazza, a fantastic abstract expressionist from Venezuela. Amazing work. We may do a solo show or group show with his work. We have plans to do a kids art show down the road, a charity auction, and sponsor a student show.

What is your favorite spot in DUMBO?

I have to say its hard to pick one place, I love the new section of the park near 10 Jay, its quiet and less touristy than the Brooklyn Bridge area. Brooklyn Roasting is great, Almar fantastic, and of course Creativebloch!