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Amherst native Jeremy Young opens Greenfield gallery focusing on urban art

Jeremy Young, an Amherst native,  has opened Urbio. on Osgood Street  in Greenfield, where he sells urban art and interesting objects.
Recorder/Paul Franz

Jeremy Young, an Amherst native, has opened Urbio. on Osgood Street in Greenfield, where he sells urban art and interesting objects. Recorder/Paul Franz

— You may not have had many reasons over the years to take Osgood Street off of Federal — but you will now.

Jeremy Young, 36, of Montague has opened Urbio (urban art and interesting objects) at 3.5 Osgood St.

Once inside, you are transported into a world of urban art — there are large, colorful abstract paintings and pencil sketchings, including one of a lion (a Young original), graffiti art covering birdhouses, glass spiders, metal art, jewelry, hair pins, and many other items, most of which were made by local artists.

There are lamps made from old toys the artist glued together and painted black or gold.

On one lamp, a stormtrooper of “Star Wars” fame shares space with a rubber duck, Iron Man and Disney mermaid Ariel. Another is a melding of Chewbacca and Looney Tunes characters.

Young’s prices range from $8 to almost $10,000 and the age range of his artists and artisans, who come from Ashfield, Montague, Shelburne, Wendell and other Franklin County towns, is teens to an 82-year-old woodworker.

“There weren’t any galleries of this type in Greenfield,” said Young. “I love art and I wanted to be part of Greenfield’s economic development.” Born in Amherst and raised in Montague, Young said he has been drawing since he was very young.

Young’s pencil drawings (realist art), abstract paintings and blown glass can be found throughout the gallery.

He moved to Oregon for several years, where he developed his interest in stained and blown glass and honed his drawing and painting skills.

“Someone took me in as an apprentice, so I really pursued art when I was there,” said Young. “When I came back, I took art classes at Greenfield Community College.” He said those classes helped push him to decide he wanted his own gallery.

“GCC is a great place to take art classes,” he said. “I’d recommend it to anyone.”

Young’s art has been shown in many area shows and art galleries and he has participated in Brattleboro, Vt.’s gallery walks and in the Mattoon Street Arts Festival in Springfield.

T-shirts with his art on them are for sale at Urbio and many of his sketches, originals and prints, are also for sale.

Young said he took business classes a couple of years ago so he would know how to market his and other artists’ work.

“Many artists create something and want to sell it, but don’t know how,” he said. “I didn’t want to be one of those artists.” Young said he was able to open Urbio with savings. He said he worked hard to save over the years. He said he had been paying for a studio and decided he’d rather take that money and find a combined gallery and studio space, which he found on Osgood Street.

He said he and friends and family spent more than a month renovating the space, a warm, inviting gallery that includes soft track lighting to spotlight the art and a high tin ceiling that Young refurbished.

“It’s so important to have those types of people in your life when you are starting out,” he said.

“Everyone in Greenfield has been so nice,” he said. “When I was getting ready to open and planning a little bash, a woman stopped in and dropped off some party supplies. She said she thought she’d help.” Young said artists need to be persistent if they have a dream similar to his.

“I spent a good amount of time bartending and doing apprentice work and selling a few pieces here and there,” he said. “It didn’t happen overnight.” “And then, I had to save and save and save — always keeping my eye on the goal of opening my own art space,” he said. Young said he would eventually like to expand his space in Greenfield. He said he is hiring one employee and would like to hire another someday.

“I really want to be a part of bringing revenue to Greenfield and be part of all that’s happening here,” he said.

Young said he believes people will enjoy his gallery — he said he is confident there isn’t another gallery like it in town.

He said he plans to “change it up” each month, by displaying new items and new artists.

“I want people who have never been here to stop and see what we have, but I’d also like to see people return,” he said. “They’ll always find something new.” Young said he would like to have an art club meet in the gallery and would like to have monthly art gatherings of some kind.

“I want to engage people — artists and those who love art,” he said. “It’s nice when you can bring them together over a little food, drink, and conversation about art.” Throughout December, Young plans to take all of the art off the walls that is hanging there now and replace it with the work of children’s illustrators.

Currently, Urbio is open Tuesday through Thursday from 1 to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 1 to 8 p.m., and Sunday from 1 to 6 p.m.

Young accepts cash, local checks and credit cards.

He said he is looking for more artists to display their work — original, abstract and urban styles mostly.

Young said he is in the process of building the gallery’s Web site: www.urbioart.com.

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