Bergen Assembly

Bergen Assembly is a perennial model for artistic production and research that is structured around public formats taking place in the city of Bergen every three years. Bergen Assembly’s flexible model is reinvented for each edition, responding in particular to a need for alternative temporalities of art production and experience within an oversaturated information culture, where attention itself is increasingly commodified and subject to pressure.

Bergen Assembly originated from the Bergen Biennial Conference in 2009, which was a response to a proposition by the municipality of Bergen to establish an international biennial for contemporary art in the city. The conference discussed the question “To biennial or not to biennial?” with international curators, artists, and academics, and was followed by The Biennial Reader (Hatje Cantz/Bergen Kunsthall, 2010)—to date the most comprehensive publication on the history and practice of biennials or regularly occurring exhibitions and events in a global perspective.

The first edition of Bergen Assembly was titled Monday Begins on Saturday and was convened by Ekaterina Degot and David Riff, manifesting in a multi-venue exhibition and a publication in 2013.