About the Confluence of Art Annual
Juried Annual Exhibit Featuring Recent Works from Regional and National Artists
Confluence of Art Annual Exhibition: Homecoming resides in each fall in the James W Hansen Gallery at Pablo Center at the Confluence. Regional and national artists submit their work for review for display in the exhibit with over 50 works crossing different media, techniques, and motifs selected for display in the exhibit each year.
Year after year, the volume and quality of works submitted continue to grow and is a testament that arts scene in the Chippewa Valley and beyond is thriving, alive, and well. We welcome guests and artists alike to participate in the exhibit and share in artistic excellence of our region.
Mary Bergs is a visual artist who works in 2D and 3D media, she uses found and made materials to create work that cultivates careful examination and appreciation of the beauty found in everyday experience. Bergs completed her BFA degree in 1999 at the University of Minnesota. She also has degrees in psychology and social work. Bergs has shown her work in solo and group exhibitions throughout the Midwest, including the Minnesota Museum of American Art, Dubuque Museum of Art, Madison Central Library, and many colleges and Universities. In addition to her studio practice, Bergs was the curator at Gallery 71 in Edina, MN and has been an artist consultant to several healthcare organizations. Bergs has had artist residencies at Jentel, Vermont Studio Center, and Kimmel Harding Nelson Art Center; and Jerome Foundation-funded residencies at Lanesboro Art Center and Tofte Lake Center. She has been the recipient of a MN State Arts Board Grants and Jerome Foundation Travel Study Grant. Bergs has taught in a variety of educational settings and worked with community groups using art as a means of creating conversation and partnerships. Bergs was a resident of Minneapolis for many years and currently lives with her husband at the edge of the village in Benton, WI.
Mary Bergs orchestrates the viewing of her work through an ordered combination of contrasts. Bergs’ formal approach employs the basic elements of art; line, form, color, color, texture, and arrangement to prompt comparisons of the objects she presents. Bergs builds a dialogue of shape, color, number, and function to engage the viewer in a conversation of things. Her presentation of the unexpected nurtures a sense of reverence, awareness, and an appreciation of the beauty found in the ordinary.
I create collaged “situations” in 2D and 3D forms, typically presented as large installations. My work represents a process of exploring ideas through the manipulation and exploration of materials, images, and objects. Through fragmentation, repetition, and arrangement I create associations between the individual components of the installations. I find the place where a connection, a discordant harmony is formed between these seemingly unrelated objects. I am interested in creating situations that open up the opportunity for imagining other possible compositions and arrangements. In my studio practice, there is a constant migration of ideas, images, and objects from one piece to another. The work is often installed in a manner that suggests it can be moved, or rearranged. The collaged situations represent a sort of visual alphabet that has landed in one of many possible configurations. I am not creating discrete works, but rather a series of associations. The compositions are a structure for shaping and integrating experience, for engaging in a way of thinking and considering how our subjective experience is molded through our interaction with images, objects, and materials. I endeavor to create work that sensitizes us to our surroundings and the objects, images, and structures that give shape to our experience.
Explore Previous Exhibitions
Each juror, artist, and year brings new experiences and perspectives to the Confluence of Art Annual. Explore our previous exhibits to view the history of the Confluence of Art Annual at the confluence.
2022 Confluence of Art Annual
Originally on display: September 9 - November 13, 2022
"This exhibit ushers in our Fifth season in the James W Hanson Gallery at Pablo Center.
A special thank you goes out to all of the artists who submitted their artwork to our juror. It takes courage to create and to extend yourself out for the world to see. It takes even more courage to offer your work up to the scrutiny of a practiced and professional eye. Our juror, Susanna Gaunt, had the challenge of sifting through over 210 images to select 54 works of art that create an exhibit. Ms. Gaunt spent countless hours perusing images and selecting artwork. We thank Ms. Gaunt for her commitment to the arts." - Assistant Director of Artistic Programming Rose Dolan-Neil
2021 Confluence of Art Annual
Originally released: September 2021
"This exhibit ushers in our fourth season in the James W Hanson Gallery at Pablo Center.
Welcome to our annual juried art exhibit Confluence of Art Annual. One of the joys of this annual exhibit is the variety of mediums that are on view. Our patrons are treated to new works from some of the top artists in our region and beyond. Please be sure to read through the artistic statements and biographies of the artists on display, these words will add to the enjoyment and appreciation of the artwork and may give you further reason to purchase a work of art from Pablo Center. Who knows, it may even inspire you to take the next steps in your creative endeavor.
A special thank you goes out to all of the artists who submitted their artwork to our juror. It takes courage to create, to extend yourself out for the world to see. It takes even more courage to offer your work up to the scrutiny of a practiced and professional eye. Our juror, Lois Peterson, had the challenge of sifting through over 177 images to select 52 works of art that create an exhibit. Ms. Peterson spent countless hours perusing images and selecting artwork. We thank Ms. Peterson for her commitment to the arts." - Assistant Director of Artistic Programming Rose Dolan-Neil
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2020 Confluence of Art Annual
Originally released virtually: September 2020
This exhibit ushered in our third season at Pablo Center at the Confluence. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic this exhibit was held in a virtual format. Juror David Brock had the unique challenge of evaluating and selecting these works virtual, evaliuating the works on the narraitve, contemporary nature, and strong visual impact.
To be sure, viewing art in this format has its limitations: there is an appreciation of artwork that can only be gained by seeing it with our own eyes... In this virtual format, the art comes into your home and on the go. We can reach audiences from across the world and also those communities close to home that might not get to come into Pablo Center that often." - Visual & Literary Arts Manager Rose Dolan-Neil
2019 Confluence of Art Annual
Originally on display: September - November 2019
"It was wonderful to get to know Eau Claire’s artistic community, and be engaged with such inspiring and enthusiastic conversations during the reception. Every participating artist’s creative contributions really made the exhibition strong, and I believe Pablo Center at the Confluence provided an impactful platform for artists through this competition.” - 2019 Confluence of Art Annual Juror, Yoonshin Park
Over 75 regional and national artists submitted 203 unique works of art for review by juror, Yooshin Park. Of these 203 pieces, 53 works crossing different media, techniques and motifs were selected for display in the Homecoming exhibit.