Persistence of Time



Teravana, Cazadero, CA

Jennifer Norback, Navvab Tadjvar, Vivian van Blerk, Mark Mueller
In Partnership with JNFA Projects

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Time gives shape and meaning to every aspect of our existence, yet we struggle to define what it is or how we relate to it.  Over the course of 3 days, through discussion, meditation, and the creation of art we will explore the theme of Time from the view of physics, philosophy, and art with the help of discussion leaders from each field. 

The program includes meditation, discussion, art making, eating, and drinking in a Sonoma mountain retreat center.

Join Mark Mueller, Navvab Tadijvar & Vivian Van Blerk


Conference Starts on March 13th at 12 pm & ends March 15 at 1:00pm (Optional overnight March 12 and March 15)


 Located above the cloud line on top of a mountain ridge, Teravana is a 730-acre coastal forest sanctuary, in the heart of Sonoma’s  Russian River Valley

Accommodation availability: Private rooms in the Manor House, Shared Room with Full-Size Bed Dormitory Pods or Glamping Tents (Jupes)


Sliding Scale donation covers conference, meals, accommodation. Limited spaces available, please inquire at [email protected] for availability.


Mark Mueller

Mark Mueller is a theoretical physicist,  He grew up in the American Middle-West and now calls New Zealand home.  His interest in the nature of time began approximately 13.8 billion years ago and will continue as long as he can get funding for further research.  When not thinking about physics he can be found with friends in the restaurants and bars of Auckland, or on the Hauraki Gulf in his sailboat, Synchronicity.

Mark received his Phd in Physics from Stanford and is currently affiliated with the the Center for Theoretical Physics at MIT, the School of physics at University of Illinois, and the Department of Physics in Auckland. He is a member of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron

Navvab Tadjvar

Navvab Tadjvar’s philosophical interests began at the age of thirteen when he first read Plato’s allegory of the cave and felt enticed at the idea that reality could be experienced with a sort of richness that was currently unavailable to him, that a kind of interiorization could result in universalization, that the wisdom gained could be used to facilitate the healing of others, and that such excellence was as difficult as it was rare. It wasn’t until graduate school that his formal philosophical education began. During his years studying philosophy, he developed a personal telos which involves a commitment to expanding his discursive horizons and the container that is his ontological being, very much inspired by the Hegelian absolute spirit and Nietzschean perspectivism. After graduate school, Navvab began teaching at San Francisco State University where he lectured on ancient philosophy, ethics, and critical thinking. While writing a paper on Foucault and the 1978-79 Iranian Revolution, he came across Lacan and became interested in Psychoanalysis. Navvab is currently a Psy.D candidate at California Institute of Integral studies where he studies Classical, Relational, and Lacanian Psychoanalysis.

Vivian van Blerk

Vivian van Blerk was born in Cape Town, South Africa in 1971. He acquired a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts in 1995 from the University of Cape Town where he specialized in print- making and photography. He lives and works in Paris since 1997. Time is a fundamental actor in his art both as  subject and process. His artworks need days, weeks or even months to develop as interacting elements in the medium gradually acquire a density and complexity that mirrors life. This organic process creates a world that operates with its own unique yet believably coherent logic.  

The worlds he creates speak of some indeterminate future time.  It is a time far enough from now to allow for cities to crumble and be covered in forests, for corals to grow on sunken cars, and for creatures to evolve characteristics often unfamiliar. In this Time to come there might not be humans or elephants or plastic bottles, but there will certainly be Something. And, that Something will be built on the profound vestiges of our human legacy. His vision looks into the vastness of time and space without sentimentality or false optimism for humanity, yet with a deeply tender humor for the beauty that will exist with or without regard for us. 

His work can be found in numerous public and private collections including the South African National Gallery, SA; Foundation d’entreprise Colas, Boulogne; University of Chicago, Cultural Policy Center; and the Art Collection of American Embassies, US State Department.


Partial Image Attribution:

Salvador Dali, Persistence of Memory, 1931, Oil on canvas24 cm × 33 cm (9.5 in × 13 in)LocationMuseum of Modern Art, New York CityOwnerMuseum of Modern Art



Meet the Artist

Jennifer Norback

Jennifer Norback

Creative Director

Jennifer Norback’s commitment and sensitivity to the unique needs of the artist has been forged out of a 30 year career in the International Contemporary Art World. Poised between Paris and Chicago, first as a gallery director, then as a gallery owner, she met and became close to some of the most influential people working in the arts today. In addition to the monthly exhibition cycle of Chicago’s River North Gallery District where it was headquartered, her gallery, Jennifer Norback Fine Art, Inc., exhibited regularly in Paris and Greece and participated in the international art fairs of Paris, New York, Chicago, and Beirut. She has served as guest curator for many prestigious art institutions including the Chicago’s Cultural Center, The Australian Embassy of Washington DC, and LUMA. Most recently in the role of Executive Director of the Oak Park Art League, she developed studio spaces for working artists and course content for educators in the arts. She is looking forward to utilizing her full background in building up the Teravana Art Residency program.
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For more information on upcoming projects and events, or to purchase works:

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19540 King Ridge Rd, Cazadero, CA 95421

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