Maga Berr
Born in Lima, Peru
Lives and works in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Artist Statement

I am inspired in human coexistence, power dynamics in society, inclusion and exclusion processes. Learned from young age to become aware of processes of cultural repression and social discrimination. My work gets born in social interaction, and it delivers questions about our human coexistence. I observe human coexistence, by interacting with diverse social groups and cultures, and this becomes my source of inspiration. I try that my work carries the emotion I experience within my social interactions, and the feelings I have for the people and social groups I meet in my way.

Installation and sculpture are the mediums I use the most. Installations present the abstraction of a situation or become a refuge. Objects used for the construction of my sculptures and installations recall many stories. I use found objects in combination with objects I make myself. Objects are animated by the stories they represent, they posses an attitude. Sculptures embody narratives, wishes, and claims. I create installations that show a dialogue between the old and new objects, they talk about their history and the intrinsic characteristics of their materials.

Work with collage uses some elements of my sculptural work, both in the use of materials and methods. Here I collect objects and images to play with their associations in the flat space. Collages show associations, maps of personal and collective subconsciousness. Sometimes this work leads me to make quilts, as I am more and more sewing on fabrics. I also use written words, inspired in some of my social interactions with friends, colleagues or partners.

Drawings are mostly a direct expression of subconscious impulses of the mind. They are a
mapping of abstract thoughts and feelings that express themselves through forms, texture and
colour. Drawings support my artistic process.

Video work touches upon sociopolitical issues, sometimes giving a voice to the oppressed. I
use contemporary social questions and political situations as a source of information for the
work.

Performance experiments I did recently where inspired in the Latin Andean American and the Afro cultures, where objects acquire magical values and become animated by the belief that they have a spirit.

Artist Statement Quote

Writings

Educational Background

2012-2017
Bachelor Fine Arts, Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Thesis keywords: Power Dynamics of Oppression, the Artist as a Shaman, Homeopathic Healing in Art.

2005
Postdoctoral Education in International Development Studies, Radboud Universiteit, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.
Thesis on Politics of International Cooperation for Development.

2002-2004
Master in International Development Studies, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Thesis on the dynamics of Racism, Multiculturalism, De-colonialism, Environmental protection and Empowerment in Education System in the Amazon rainforest in Peru 2004: 5 months field research in the Amazon rainforest of Peru, for MA thesis on intercultural education.

1996-2000
Bachelor in Communication Sciences, specialisation in Film and Television, University of Lima, Peru.

Work Experience

2005-2011
Worked as a coordinator in diverse international social and environmental projects (in South East Asia, Europe, and Latin America), at organizations such as Oxfam-Novib, Amnesty International and Both ENDS. Research on environmental and social inequality in diverse regions of the world gathered experience in a bottom-up approach for participatory project development, facilitation processes, intercultural communication, and project management.

1999-2002
Worked in the broadcasting business in Peru in diverse positions as set journalistic researcher, designer, scriptwriter, photographer, and producer. Gathered relevant information about the socio-political situation in my own country, Peru, by developing journalistic research.

Side Activities

2017-2018
Coaching program for recently graduated artists, Academy-Rotterdam.

January 2018
Training for Trainers from The One Minutes initiative, Amsterdam.

2018
Screening of “expectations’’ at SWITCH, Roodkapje Rotterdam.

2017-2018
An organization of collective “The Bridge”, where artists and refugees were working together to bring their reflections about migration to the outside world.

2016-2017
Participation in the working group of the “Flag of Compassion” project by Rini Hurkmans.

2007
One week course on International Financial Institutions by the Heinrich Böll Stiftung, in Washington DC. Study of the Structure and Operations of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.

Exhibitions

  • "ZomerSalon, Royaal", CBK Zuidoost, 2020.
  • "City Life", Museum Arnhem, 2020.
  • "A House for The Un-Known", artist talk and exhibition, puntWG, 2020.
  • Residency exhibition, CBK Zuidoost, 2019.
  • Residency exhibition, Despina, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2019.
  • Residency exhibition, CBK Zuidoost, 2018.
  • “On my way to the Galactic Supermarket, need anything?”, Garage Rotterdam, 2018.
  • “New Found Land”, RADION, Amsterdam, 2018.
  • “Jetzt Schlägt's Driezehn”, V & B showroom, Rotterdam, 2018.
  • “Bougie 2017”, CBK Amsterdam, 2017.
  • “Summer of Love”, Vishal, Haarlem, 2017.
  • Graduation Show, Gerrit Rietveld Academy, 2017.
  • “Notes”, Peer Paper Platform, Amsterdam, 2017.
  • "Syzygy", Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam, 2016.
  • "Excellence. Simply delivered. (1/3)", as part of the Uncut Festival, Brakke Grond, Amsterdam, 2016 "For example, etc.", A Lab, Amsterdam, 2016.
  • 'Wonder and Wander', De Oude Kerk, Amsterdam, 2015.
  • Part Two, Gerrit Rietveld Academy, 2015.
  • Dogtime 2, Gerrit Rietveld Academy, 2014.
  • “BIT(e)S”, Sixty One Gallery, Amsterdam, 2014.
  • Dogtime 1, Gerrit Rietveld Academy, 2013.
  • Open day at Artless, 2012.

Residencies

August-October 2019
Residency H-Lab at CBK Amsterdam SouthEast, The Netherlands (upcoming)

May-July 2019
Residency Despina, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (upcoming)

January 2019
Orientation trip to Pre- Colombian ceramic historical places in Peru - Sechura desert (upcoming)

November 2018
Residency H-Lab at CBK Amsterdam SouthEast, The Netherlands

August 2018
Residency H-Lab at CBK Amsterdam SouthEast, The Netherlands

May 2018
Orientation trip to Pre-Colombian ceramic historical places in Peru - Sechura desert

Contact

Maga Berr
magaberr0000@gmail.com
00310618246012
Instagram