Bergit Arends is a visual art curator and researcher.
Bergit curated the contemporary art programme at the Natural History Museum London from 2005 to 2013, which included exhibitions, commissions, and international artists’ residencies, among others by Daniel Boyd, Hu Yun, and Sunoj D. Among the exhibitions were the touring group show Galápagos (2012–2013) and After Darwin: Contemporary Expressions (2009); as well as Lucy + Jorge Orta: Amazonia; Mark Dion: Systema Metropolis (2007); and The Ship: The Art of Climate Change (2006). For the museum’s Treasures Gallery she commissioned the permanent installation TREE (2009) by Tania Kovats to mark the 150 years of the publication of On the Origins of Species and the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth.
Previous collaborative work environments include MRC National Institute for Medical Research (1996 to 2000), where I initiated and curated the first art programme within a scientific research institution, and the Wellcome Trust (1999 to 2004).
Since 2013 Bergit has been doctoral Reid Scholar in the departments of Geography and Drama & Theatre at Royal Holloway, University of London, researching contemporary art, archives and environmental change in the age of Anthropocene. She currently curates two new visual art commissions for the Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin, and is Manager of Research & Public History at the Science Museum.
In August 2016 she participated in the first workshop in Karongi, Rwanda on cultural heritage protection and environmental conservation in the African context as part of the international Culture in Crisis programme by the V&A and the Yale Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage, in collaboration with the National Museums of Rwanda and the Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin.
Bergit studied Conservation at Camberwell College of Arts and holds a MA in Curating Contemporary Art from the Royal College of Art.