At the Field Station, scientists from many branches of the natural sciences are active, along with artists which work at the Field Station under collaboration between UC Berkeley and the Nevada Museum of Art’s Center for Art and Environment. Several artists have in recent years conducted research at the station, most notably Newton and Helen Mayer Harrison.
In his residency, Bjarki is conducting research on ancient trees present in the Sagehen forest. The forest was clear cut in the California Gold Rush in the 19.th, but stumps of trees left behind contain valuable information of climate and forest fires centuries back. In his work, Bjarki interrogates global warming from a historical and societal perspective, often mirroring personal narrative in the context of global paradigm shifts. His recent exhibition at the Living Art Museum juxtaposed his grandparents’ garden, soon to be demolished, with a 3000 year old birch tree which due to melting surfaced from underneath Vatnajökull glacier last summer. In his current collaboration with the ASÍ Museum, Bjarki works towards two solo exhibitions dealing with living systems as indicators of time.
The collaboration at the Sagehen Creek Field Station opens ways to expand the discourse on nature and the pressing questions present in all things, living and non-living, in the Anthropocene.