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  • megan's picture



    With a bit of sadness, the Berwick announces the end of its Artist in Research (AIR)  Program. Started in a former whoopie pie factory in Roxbury's Dudley Square in 2003, the Berwick's AIR program has served numerous artists and artist groups and has invited a wide range of audiences into those artists' art-making processes. Within (and outside of) our studio walls, Artists in Research have sent helium balloon wishes into the sky, built suspended biospheres, experimented with pirate radio,  mounted politically engaged tea parties, hacked musical instruments, built a bike-bus, transformed weather data into sculpture and then into musical scores, collaborated with Dudley Square youth, made credit-card sound art, and much, much more.  We've been honored to have incubated the ideas of the artists who have come through our program and are humbled to witness their continued development afterward.  

    The AIR program provided a studio, funding, and most importantly, critical perspectives for a widerange of inventive artists and their projects early in their careers. Uniquely structured to give artists constant feedback through studio visits, critiques, performances, workshops, and access to our wide reaching network of artists and art professionals, the AIR program has provided local, national and international creative producers with a space for experimentation, critical reflection, and community essential in the early stages of their careers. In return, the AIR Program was a place for its curators to grow, learn and experiment as artists, administrators, and collaborators. The artists and the communities their projects engendered, the press that made our artists visible, and the program supporters that gave us their vote of confidence have all been critical contributing elements to the development of the AIR Program and the Berwick as a whole.

     And so, the Berwick would like to acknowledge and thank all those who made the AIR program the success that it has been: the AIR artists who have bravely opened their studios and their practices to the public; the AIR curators who have worked tirelessly to grow and sustain this program and its artists with limited funds and limitless heart; and the members of the Boston arts community who have volunteered their time, thought, and support as AIR jurors, critics, and resources.  It has been a privilege to participate in the making of this exciting program and in the creation of new work and new ideas along the way.  We would also like to thank our audiences, collaborators and individual donors, and to highlight the LEF Foundation and the Massachusetts Cultural Council for recognizing the value of such an endeavor by taking a chance on  funding individual artist projects.  Best of luck to all AIR alumnae in your future projects, and congratulations on creating a unique and vibrant place for contemporary artwork in the city of Boston.  

    The Future  

    Though the closing of the AIR era is a significant programmatic shift, the Berwick Research Institute is still here. As we evolve, we are still passionately committed to our core mission. We will continue to support emerging artists with the opportunity for fiscal sponsorship and a laboratory where they can experiment with new forms and concepts without the pressure of a commercial environment. We will explore new ways to bring artists and audiences together to foster a community based on dialogue, while encouraging play as a means of doing research. And we hope you, our community, will join us in the process. We welcome your support and ideas as we move forward. Stay tuned.



    Bonnie Bastien - bonnie at berwickinstitute dot org

    Daniel DeLuca - daniel at berwickinstitute dot org

    Megan Dickerson - megan at berwickinstitute dot org

    Heather Kapplow - heather at berwickinstitute dot org

    Dana Moser - dana at berwickinstitute dot org 

    Deb Nicholson - deb at berwickinstitute dot org 

    Meg Rotzel - meg at berwickinstitute dot org

    Hanna Rose Shell - hrshell at mit dot edu

    Ryan Sciaino - ryan at berwickinstitute dot org

    Andi Sutton - andi at berwickinstitute dot org 


    Curators, Bonnie Bastien and Nova Benway - 2008-2009  

    Nathalie Miebach 

    Jesse Kaminsky

    Joshua Pablo Rosenstock

    Eve Essex

    Curators, Bonnie Bastien and Rosie Branson Gill - 2006-2007

    Kelly Sherman 

    Véronique d'Entremont

    Liz Nofziger

    Jon Taylor 

    Maura Jasper

    Matthew Shanley

    Founder and Curator, Meg Rotzel with support from Mary Fuller and Natalie Vinski 2002-2005 

    Vaughn Bell 

    Devil Music Ensemble 

    Kirsten Forkert

    Christy Georg 

    Heather Kapplow

    Carolyn Lambert and Fereshteh Toosi 

    John Osorio-Buck

    Jessica Rylan

    Morgan Schwartz

    Aliza Shapiro

    Amy Sharp 

    Helena Sidiropulous

    David Webber


    Curators, Andi Sutton and Susan Sakash 

    The Institute for Infinitely Small Things

    Matthew Mazzotta and Heather Clark

    John Ewing

    About the AIR Program

    The Artist in Research (AIR) Program was a residency program created under the Berwick Research Institute’s non-profit umbrella that provided emerging conceptual artists essential time, space, community and, most importantly, critical feedback. High value was placed on a sustained period of dialogue and critical analysis, with no expectations for the completion of artwork. Instead, curators encouraged the research and interrogation of an idea, and experimentation with the subsequent results.

  • heather's picture

    A celebration of Boston‘s Performance Art Initiative and release of long-awaited web-based archive, which was developed with support of the Berwick's SPI program. Exhibition of performance art relics and evolving timeline on view at MEME October 9th-23rd.

    October 9th 8pm
    Accumulation screening

    October 16th  8 pm
    Screening of selected and extended archive footage
    October 23, 7 pm
    Live Event, featuring the work of:
    Coco Segaller (Boston)
    Sarah Schoemann (NYC)
    Philip Fryer (Boston)
    Daniel DeLuca [Boston]

  • bonnie's picture
    It's your last chance to play in the Scratch Orchestra!

    You are invited to participate in the final installment of a historical reenactment of Cornelius Cardew's Scratch Orchestra.  No musical experience is necessary, only an instrument (i.e., cello, flute, kazoo, saxophone, drums, voice, washboard, guitar, trombone, pots and pans, etc.).

    Activities for the final meeting include the performance of new "Improvisation Rites" and performing a selection of Scratch Music scores written by members of the ensemble. You are encouraged to write and bring your own scratch music score.

    Go to for full details.

    See you then!!

  • bonnie's picture

    cgeorg rope cgeorg glove

     Nautical Body   


    An Exhibition of Sculptures, Photographs & Drawings by Christy Georg

    An Exhibition of Sculptures, Photographs & Drawings by Christy Georg

    August 31 - September 30

    BOSTON (August 5, 2009) — Simmons College presents "Nautical Body," an exhibition of sculptures, photographs, and drawings, August 31—September 30, at the Simmons College Trustman Art Gallery, fourth floor, Main College Building, 300 The Fenway, in Boston.

    A reception with the artist Christy Georg will be held on Thursday, Sept. 10, from 5:00—7:00 p.m., preceded by an artist talk and performance of the popular sea chantey "Cape Cod Girls." The exhibit, performance, and reception are free and open to the public.

    In "Nautical Body," created for the Trustman Gallery, Georg, who is known for kinetic sound sculptures and sculptural apparatuses, has launched a new series that links art to maritime culture. Using materials and techniques familiar to sailors of yesteryear, Georg painstakingly knots rope and fashions witty sculptural objects that evoke Boston's seafaring origins. Georg explains, "I make sculptural instruments and devices that function either actually, or metaphorically. Often created for use in a specific location or inspired by a particular historical account, their meticulous craftsmanship lends them authority as functional objects, but upon inspection may seem quite absurd, fetishistic, alchemical, or otherwise baffling."

    Having spent two summers living and working on a large sailing schooner and her own sailboat, Georg's mixed media installation provides multiple perspectives on a subject she literally immersed herself in. Supplemented by exhaustive research, Georg has found a way to wed an experiential, frequently ironic contemporary art sensibility with traditional maritime crafts, revealing beauty in utilitarian objects typically associated with 19th-century sailing vessels. Her elegant ovoid sculptures, "Giant Becket-Brooches," employ the labor-intensive process sailors used to fashion knotted rope handles for their wooden sea chests, while also elevating craft to art.

    Since completing her MFA at the Massachusetts College of Art in 2003, Georg has exhibited widely and has been awarded twelve residencies. Her Fine Arts Work Center fellowship in Provincetown and residencies at Ross Creek in Nova Scotia, the Contemporary Artists Center in Troy, New York and SculptureSpace in Utica, New York, have provided vital support to create work featured in this solo show at the Trustman Gallery. Most recently, Georg won the Mellon Foundation's Blanche E. Colman award.

    Trustman Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. The gallery is free, open to the public and wheelchair accessible. For more information, contact Marcia Lomedico at 617-521-2268.


    Christy Georg recently won a Blanche E Colman award, completed residencies at Sculpture Space and the Contemporary artists center at Woodside.  Georg has upcoming residencies at I-Park, the Virginia Center for Creative arts, Pouch Cove in Newfoundland and the Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos, NM.  Next year Georg has a two person show at Grimshaw-Gudewicz Art Gallery , Fall River and a solo show at Khyber Institute of Contemporary art, Halifax, Nova Scotia 

  • bonnie's picture

    scratch orch poster



    You are invited to participate in a historical reenactment of Cornelius Cardew's Scratch Orchestra.  No musical experience is necessary, only an instrument (i.e., cello, flute, kazoo, saxophone, drums, voice, washboard, guitar, trombone, pots and pans, etc.)

    The first meeting is August 11, 2009 at 7:30 PM
    in the Berwick Research Institute studios,
    14 Palmer Street, Roxbury MA

    Epitomizing the transient political idealism of the late 1960s, the Scratch Orchestra sought to rethink music in socially activist terms.  Welcoming any player, regardless of experience or occupation, the group used collaborative and improvisation-based procedures in attempt to cooperatively bridge the gap between professional and amateur, art and everyday life. Democratically run by the players, in theory if not always in practice, it was at once a performing music ensemble, musical training-program, and political think-tank.  And fitting to its democratic aims, the orchestra was founded in a written declaration—the “Draft Constitution.”

    Rather than attempting a reconstruction of events-- a la Civil War reenactments-- the Scratch Orchestra Reenactment will use this Draft Constitution as its script.  By following the instructions and practices laid out in their manifesto, the Reenactment will theatrically revisit this radical and inventive group by taking on its premise—to pool our resources and assemble for action.

    Go to:  for full details.

  • nova's picture
    Eve Essex OpeningEve Essex is a Providence-based artist whose work suggests that history is as malleable as fiction.  She attempts to neutralize the authority of ‘proper’ history by suggesting a multiplicity of alternatives. In video, sculpture, photography and performance, she explores historical moments and figures as a site for active re-interpretation. Originally from Columbus, Ohio, she received a BFA in Sculpture from the Rhode Island School of Design.

    "How to Improve the World,” the focus of Essex's AIR residency, is a project that blurs the roles of artist and anthropologist.

    Essex's object of study will be the Marxist composer Cornelius Cardew and his avant-garde musical milieu of the 60s and 70s.  She wishes to adopt the political battles waged in Cardew’s social and musical life as the subject for a historical archive and library. 

    Through video, interviews, writing, and collaborative performances in the guise of “historical reenactments” Essex will collect and fabricate a range of historical recordings and documents—a body of generated materials that make up the collection of this library.  This factual, albeit highly subjective history will serve a theatrical framework for investigations of the artist’s role as public intellectual, and the mythical status of canonical modern artists.


  • heather's picture

    AIR alum Nathalie Miebach talks about her work at the Museum Of Science. Check out the video....

  • bonnie's picture

    The Berwick is seeking 2 creative and resourceful people to run the Artist in Research residency program. The ideal candidate will have a vested interest in concept-driven art processes and motivation to improve Boston as an art community. The selected applicants will produce all programming associated with the AIR program. This is a volunteer position with an honorarium awarded.

    The Artist in Research (AIR) Program is a residency program created under the Berwick Research Institute's non-profit umbrella that provides emerging conceptual artists essential time, space, community and, most importantly, critical feedback. High value is placed on a sustained period of dialogue and critical analysis. There are no expectations for the completion of artwork. Instead we encourage the research and interrogation of an idea, and experimentation with the subsequent results. The AIR Program selects two to three artists each year for ten-week residencies with the following schedule:

    Residency 1: April 1 - June 15
    Residency 2: July 1 - September 15
    Residency 3: October 1 - December 15.

    Primary Responsibilities:

    • Conduct application/jury process
    • Facilitate/manage opening and closing artist events
    • Build working relationship with AIR artist
    • Follow program time line/create an effective pace for the residency with the artist
    • Adapt the program (reasonably) to fit the artists working style and/or needs
    • Build relationships with people outside of the Berwick to create a pool of resources
    • Schedule and conduct weekly meetings/critiques
    • Challenge and motivate the artist
    • Provide conceptual or tangible resources for each artist based on research into the artist's topic (i.e. a suggestion of a certain artist or historical period to research)
    • Outreach on the artist's behalf to a local art space as host for an AIR event.
    • Document residency (events, works in progress, encourage blogging, etc)
    • Manage AIR portion of Berwick website
    • Keep press contacts current
    • Develop press materials
    • Manage program Budget
    • Manage mailing list
    • Write for organizational and programmatic grant funding

    Application Deadline- July 15th 2009

    Please send CV/Resume and coverletter to Bonnie Bastien


  • bonnie's picture


    JP Rosenstock drummer


    Come and join the conversation! The work on view will be work in process. We look forward to your input! 

    With the Berwick, Joshua Pablo Rosenstock has been working on "Shrine to the Funky Drummer", a multimedia installation that will seek to portray a specific instance of media sampling as an archetypal cultural moment and a lens through which to examine a multifaceted story of creative appropriation.  The "Funky Drummer" is a five-second excerpt from a James Brown song that has been used as the foundation of hundreds of other musical compositions and is one of popular music's most famous samples.

    Rosenstock has been gathering, creating, and working towards presenting artifacts and "holy relics" that explore the early history of Hip Hop and the creative acts of sampling and remixing.  He is investigating debates about copyright and fair use in relation to Afro-Diasporic musical notions of "versioning," the fetishistic culture of record-digging, and postmodern theoretical questions about authorship in the age of digital (re)production. 

  • leon's picture
    SPURSE 1
    SPURSE 2
    SPURSE 3 
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