Art Fix: Beer and the Beyond

Drinks, a chill atmosphere, and amazing fine art all at the same time? Can it be true?! Tenille van den Berg, featured in this October's issue, has a joint show with Sophia Um at the bar Post606. van den Berg's ethereal photos contrast really well against Um's incredibly colourful and vivid pieces. Drinking my beer and crunching on very fresh pretzels, I found myself in an interesting space balanced between van den Berg's untouchable world beyond science, and Um's very real and tangible world of hugs and physical connection. The show definitely inspires good food for thought - or beer as the case may be. Head down to Post606 and ponder life between sips. Or just enjoy looking at beautiful art, because that's always a good time, too. Here's a map and here's the Facebook event. This is van den Berg's website. I was also able to get a short interview with van den Berg on her art and the show. Here's what she had to say:

Kita Mendolia: Your photos are so beautifully creepy. Were you specifically trying to go for the shiver-up-the-spine feeling or did it just naturally evolve from both your medium of pin-hole photography and the subjects?

Tenille van den Berg: From the outset I envisioned creating ethereal images. While I was doing research on 'ghost-like' images, I came upon old pinhole photos and I immediately fell in love with the 'creepiness' as well as the 'softness' it captures. I felt that this art form would be best to convey the theme of spirituality (the unseen, supernatural, that which we can not explain). 

KM: Are those pictures of flakes of wax? 'Cause that's way cool. It looks like skin. Was that on purpose?

TB: I used modelling wax to make these 'petal-like' forms. I looked at enlarged images of cancer cells and they looked like flower petals. I recreated them to form a dialogue with the pinhole images (they represent the end of material existence). It is interesting that you see these as skin, since I intended to show them as part of our biological make-up albeit a different one.

KM: Why black and white versus colour?

TB: From the beginning it felt as if there was no space for colour, if it makes sense. Using colour was never an option. The black and white represents the two 'worlds' I was exploring, the world of science vs the world of the unexplained.

KM: Are those your feet? Or do you use a different model?

TB: Yes, they are my feet. It was quite a mission with the pinhole camera to get it done, I had a lot of laughs doing it.

KM: What is the next thing you're working on?

TB: At the moment I'm working on mixed media drawings. I make use of ink and bleach. I like the sepia colour that comes through when I mix the ink and bleach. I'm still stuck on feet...


Well, I for one can't wait to see more of her feet (in a totally non-creepy fetish sort of way). Keep your eye on [b]racket's blog. We'll let you know when and where you can see more yourself.

~ Kita Mendolia