Eric Ryberg is a contemporary artist and Senior Lecturer at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Originally from Western New York, Ryberg earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the State University of New York at Fredonia. In 2020, Ryberg earned his Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture from the University of Texas at San Antonio. His current work utilizes mapping, cartography, and record keeping to create visual representations of his personal experiences, environment, and identity.
My work utilizes mapping and cartographic techniques to create a visual representation of my personal experiences, environment, and identity. Addressing space, time, and motion, mapping and charting are tools that provide opportunities for the observation and interpretation of forms that cannot be experienced as a whole.
Consider a house, from outside, one could begin to envision what is inside and what takes place within its walls. Better yet, traversing the house, room by room, allows someone to develop a better understanding of the space but it is not until the house is mapped out as a blueprint or floor plan that the entire space can be perceived or understood as a whole. I use the floor plans of various places I have called home to examine “Home” as a defined space both physically and metaphorically.
The technique of mapping is not only used to delineate space but to also record time and motion. Over the course of one year, I tracked my movements through space for each day and used the recorded information to visually chart my life. These abstract maps allow viewers the opportunity to observe the repetitive, “creature of habit” nature of my movements throughout the year 2019.
The Map Pack is a wearable device that, similar to a seismograph, produces an instantaneous drawing based on the motions and subsequent force provided by my body as I navigate an environment or perform specific tasks. The resulting drawings, or graphs, provide viewers an alternative perspective of my body's movements. While the Creature of Habit 2019 presents a macro vision of where I go, the Map Pack gives specificity to my physical movements.