Edward Cella Art & Architecture is pleased to present its second solo exhibition of works by Los Angeles-based artist Adam Berg, In the Blink of an Eye. Featuring new paintings and sculptures by the multidisciplinary artist, the exhibition will present a culmination of three interrelated, and ongoing, bodies of work. Berg has spent the last three decades exploring art at the intersection of science and philosophy, staging conceptual and experiential encounters with objects and surfaces. In the Blink of an Eye, Berg explores the temporal and shifting nature of perception, focusing on the moment in which an artwork is experienced and apprehended by the viewer. Fleeting and momentary, the impression of the object is a time-based instant of cognition that lingers; a space of flux and instability in which boundaries are lax and mutable. An opening reception will be held April 30th. The works will be on view through May 7, 2016.
For Berg, the art object becomes an active agent of experience, a fluid “event” rather than an independently fixed, material fact. Revisiting questions raised by philosophers such as Mach, Husserl, and Derrida – all of whom had recourse to the trope of “in the blink of an eye” to describe the flash moment in which human consciousness registers presence or absence – Berg envisions a painting or sculpture as a conduit for time; a vortex in which realities collide, change, and dissolve. Interested in this phenomenological role of art as a vehicle for sensory cognizance, Berg creates sculptures and paintings that engage us in a moment of self-conscious viewing.
The exhibition will include two new large freestanding sculptures and smaller wall-mounted works, alongside two-dimensional pieces. The reflective sculptures convey a sense of instability through shifting material states, functioning as temporally activated volumes. In works such as Natured, a pedestal mounted sculpture made of cast bronze rock and projecting elevations of polished stainless steel, the object feels both artificial and organic, existing simultaneously as solid gestalt and fluid mirror. A phenomenological conundrum in and of itself, the object is mutable, changing unexpectedly with every environmental variable. The object seems to dissolve into space, reflecting and absorbing the world around it in a restless blur of movement and dislocation, all while remaining strangely heavy and geologic. The second large freestanding sculpture, In The Blink Of An Eye, is a composition of mirrored steel cylindrical volumes with two “eyeball-like” mirrored spheres. These forms both reflect and engulf each other, and the surrounding spaces, revealing hidden interstitial dimensions contained within the form itself. This spatial and visual rhizome seems rooted, emerging endlessly from beneath and within in defiance of its physical boundaries.
The paintings seek to depict the varied nature of perception through the mechanistic workings of apparatuses. A new series of diptychs, inspired by Magritte’s meta-painting The Human Condition, are enclosed within mirror polished stainless steel frames. These works are self-referential gestures, referring to the ubiquity of the screen in our iPhone dominated visual culture, a device through which perceptual experience is constantly mediated. Depicting hands with handheld devices on which the imagery of the painting itself is redoubled, the images capture screens within screens, simulating the workings of the digital within the analog. Other paintings feature sphere like shapes that read as planets or eyes, recalling the shutter of a camera or the opening of an oculus. Finally, a large eleven by eight foot canvas, Q-bit Lab Spin, presents an anamorphic depiction of a quantum computer lab; a kaleidoscopic vortex of structured chaos in which representational information is compressed and accelerated visually.
ABOUT ADAM BERG
Born in Israel, Adam Berg attended Accademia de Belle Arti, Rome, Italy, and studied architecture, landscape architecture, and philosophy at the University of Toronto, Canada. He went on to complete a Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts, and Doctoral degree in Philosophy from the University of Haifa, Israel. Berg has had solo exhibitions at Edward Cella Art & Architecture, Los Angeles, CA; Santa Monica Museum of Art, Santa Monica, CA; Museo Revoltella, Trieste, Italy; Museo Arte Plastica, Olona, Italy; Palazzo Medici Riccardi, Florence, Italy; REDCAT, Los Angeles, CA; Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Archipelago, Israel; and Haifa Museum of Art, Haifa, Israel. Berg has had broup exhibitions with MoCA Bejing, Bejing, China; King David Tower Museum, Jerusalem, Israel; Ludiwg Museum, Koblenz, Koblenz, Germany; Barnsdall Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; Track 16 Gallery, Santa Monica, CA; Whitechapel Gallery, London, England; and Art Museum of Athens, Athens, Greece.