Bernd Haussmann, the Broad Institute's current artist-in-residence, describes his work as “environmental art.” Through his artistic practice, he seeks to explore subjective environments, and to test “how the spiritual, material, cultural, and natural environments influence those subjective environments and vice versa; if and how they meet, connect or overlap; and if and how [his] art can become a connector and stimulate interaction.”
This openness to his environment, along with Haussmann’s curiosity about new ideas and disciplines, will lay the foundation for his collaboration with the Broad. He is looking to engage the community in a visual dialogue. Throughout the coming year, he intends to communicate with the Broad community through various projects. He hopes for lively participation by Broad staff and scientists that will help create, through interdisciplinary exchange, meaningful pieces of art. This collaboration focuses on the curiosity and passion for exploration that are the common ground of art and science and the beginnings of any creative endeavor.
“My approach as a painter,” Haussmann explains, “is to look at the world and accumulate all kinds of information and then by editing make sense of it. In one of the projects at the Broad (Babylon), I will not even be using my vocabulary, not even using my colors, not even attempting to use my painterly abilities. I will use the language that’s there and try to transform this concrete language of science into an abstract piece of art.”
Though he won’t keep a physical studio at the Broad, the German-born artist, who splits his time between studios in Marblehead, MA and the mountains of western Maine, will be a frequent visitor. He plans to attend scientific presentations and seeks to engage in conversation with members of the Broad community about science and art. His current Broad exhibit, on display in the vestibule of 7 Cambridge Center, starts that conversation. It features paintings executed from 1995 to 2012, which he says allow the viewer “a glimpse into the artist’s mind, approach and production.”