Great Review from the Channels Newspaper on Tim Berg & Rebekah Myers lecture: Collaboration is key in Berg and Myers artistic success
Tim Berg and Rebekah Myers give a speech about their artwork for the Atkinson Gallery Lecture series in the Administration Building on East Campus, March 19. Their collaborative pieces will be on display in the Atkinson Gallery until April 11.
SKYLAR SERGE, Channels Staff
March 19, 2014
Filed under A&E, Arts & Entertainment, Exhibition, Speech
Collaborative multimedia artists, Tim Berg and Rebekah Myers, gave a lecture Wednesday night at City College, shortly after their exhibit, “Honest to Goodness,” debuted in the Atkinson Gallery.
The lecture, “Glimpses: Procedure and Practice,” invited viewers into the experimental world of Berg and Myers.
“One of the things I learned is that there are three competing theories of humor,” Berg said.
Berg began with some philosophy, depicting theories of humor to explain his artistic visions.
First, he explained the superiority theory, which views humor as mockery. Then, the relief theory, which suggests humor is a release of excess energy; a concept introduced by Sigmund Freud. The third form of humor—which Berg and Myers payed special attention to—is known as the incongruity theory.
“We laugh when two things that are normally kept separate are unexpectedly forced together,” Berg said. The idea of humor as being incongruous is very fascinating for both the artists to address in their collaborative work.
As noted throughout the lecture, collaboration is more than two people finishing a product together; it is the complete trust given between two separate entities that combine to create something organic and homogenizing—“a natural revolution,” as Berg calls it.
Carlos Padilla, an art student at City College, attended the lecture, where he was most fascinated about working in a combined effort.
“I think the collaboration is very interesting on how people interact and the efficiency of collaboration,” said Padilla.
Another component that is vital to the work created by Berg and Myers is the idea of “mirthlessness,” a concept derived from author and Nobel Prize winner, Samuel Beckett.
In an installation created by the artists, a park bench of true-to-size scale was covered in orange, ceramic squirrels. However, during the time the exhibit was open, these squirrels were sold as souvenirs.
“The idea really explores how nature is something that is systematically transformed into a commodity,” Berg said. “The selling of these squirrels as souvenirs demonstrates how wild animals are often objectified, packaged as something cute, tame and fun and this is something we grew up with.”
A shared vision of aesthetics is constant in the work produced by these artists. Smooth, shiny and highly refined objects are the focus for their ongoing work. Their goal, “to create an iconic form that exists inside your mind.”
The second part of their lecture was titled “Practice,” where Berg and Myers glide through a collection of various works.
In the exhibition, “As Luck Would Have It,” objects resembling ‘lucky charms’ were placed throughout the room. In their lecture they explain the similarities between that show and their newer piece—“better an ounce of luck than a pound of gold,” in the exhibit, “Honest to Goodness.”
In one of the images, wishbones, a rabbit foot and peas in a pod are all elegantly arranged to represent symbols of luck and wealth.
“We like this idea that life is inherently uncertain and so something like luck presents people with an opportunity to conjure up a sense of control over the uncontrollable,” Berg said.
While these intrinsic beliefs are embossed throughout the work created by these artists, the process of collaboration seemed to be the most vital part to achieving their successes.
“You have to listen in a respectful way and have to learn how to remove your ego so you understand that you can yield a stronger result by doing that,” Berg said.
Thank you to SBCC Channels Newspaper for their review on "HONEST TO GOODNESS" by Tim Berg & Rebekah Myers
‘Authentic’ ceramic creations displayed in Atkinson Gallery
Atkinson Gallery Director, Sarah Cunningham, and viewer, Norman Krohn, talk at the reception of the new exhibit, ‘Honest to Goodness,’ on Friday, March 7, at the Atkinson Gallery in Santa Barbara.
SKYLAR SERGE, Channels Staff
March 8, 2014
Filed under A&E, Activities, Arts & Entertainment, Exhibition, On campus, Top Stories
Tim Berg and Rebekah Myers are a collaborative duo producing multimedia installations that distort common perceptions.
Simplistic objects are transformed from the average understanding to generate a fresh meaning for the viewer.
The reception was held at 5 p.m. Friday, March 7, in the Atkinson Gallery, where the artists featured their new exhibition titled, “Honest to Goodness.”
The most noticeable installation in the room is the colossal, green, ceramic bunny placed contently on an intricate wood platform.
Made from Styrofoam and glazed ceramic, the immense green bunny fills up much of the room.
The white interminable walls of the gallery were an opportune space for the dynamic artists to display their odd ceramic creations.
This bunny wasn’t alone. A whole wall of installed slate shelves hold a unit of seven by seven, green bunnies planted on top of circular wooden stands. While all of these ceramic animals are facing the same direction and create a sense of unison—they also establish an interesting shadow effect throughout the gallery.
It is unknown if it was an intentional design to have the wall of bunnies reflect a pattern of light resembling triangles across the entire installation.
The exhibit itself is very abstract, looking as if it belongs in a hip New York hotel in SoHo. Berg and Myers achieve an installation that is unlike anything I had ever seen.
The duo aims to change people’s impressions of common icons and is influenced by the cultural consumerism in their everyday lives.
Minimalistic sculptures fill open briefcases in a display with a miniature bunny and a sign as if it’s on a miniature highway saying, “It’s Authentic.”
One of the walls displays two wishbones, both facing in opposite directions; one is painted white and the other brown. This piece, “Toss Up” is a glazed ceramic and porcelain installation that embodies good fortune.
Another member in this exhibit is the electric light fixture that reads, “souvenirs.” This odd white light adds an element of graphic design to its already modernistic vibe.
In a neat white box, Berg and Myers assembled creations made from gold lustered glazed ceramic, maple, acrylic and wood felt. In the piece titled, “Better an ounce of luck than a pound of gold” the artists arrange small, shiny items into an organized fashion. Objects such as acorns, feathers, and horseshoes fill the box.
An especially interesting part of this exhibit is the use of typography and words. “It’s Authentic” is the staple of this show. These words are seen stamped into seals on various drawings, stood up on platforms and shown in a piece of its own against a wooden backdrop.
Berg and Myers have displayed their work in several solo exhibitions in places such as New York and Sweden. Berg is an associate professor at Pitzer College in Claremont, California and they both received their BFA’s from the University of Colorado in Boulder.
The exhibition will be on display at the Atkinson Gallery from March 7 to April 11.
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