2016 year in review

Project The Hole Is in Your Head by Albert Allgaier, 2016. Photography: Lena Sieder-Semlitsch
In 2016, VAA Nida Art Colony teemed with events and exhibitions, celebrated its 5th birthday, and became more open and attractive than ever for those interested in contemporary art and education after opening its new building. This was demonstrated not only by impressive media coverage and ongoing or new partnerships, but also record numbers of those of you who have visited our shows and follow what we do. We want to celebrate the intensity and abundance of 2016 together with you, reflecting on the growth and expansion of our activity in this recent year.
In 2016 we held three exhibitions of the visual arts residency exchange and exhibition project Climbing Invisible Structures. Ritualised Disciplinary Practices in Social Life. The exhibitions attracted 1938 visitors.
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In an underground water reservoir in Vilnius on 29th April – 15th May, 2016
At VAA Nida Art Colony on 21st May – 19th June, 2016  At the Ars Communis Residency Centre YO-YO in Žeimiai on 30th July – 28th August, 2016

Photos by Andej Vasilenko

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Hybrid(…)scapes, exhibition view, VAA Nida Art Colony, Neringa, Lithuania, 2016. Photography: Nida Art Colony
The “Hybrid(...)scapes” exhibition took place on 23th July – 28th August at VAA Nida Art Colony. The exhibition presented new works by returning residents of NAC. In June and July 2016, the artists were living and working here, developing ideas they had explored in their earlier residency periods or proposed specifically for this show. The works in the exhibition engage in a dialogue with the audience not only about constructed landscapes of Nida, but also about rapidly changing images of the global world. The “Hybrid(...)scapes” exhibition attracted 2635 visitors.
The 6th Inter-format Symposium on Hybrid Natures, which took place at Nida Art Colony on 23rd-25th July, brought together more than 40 artists, scientists, curators, writers and architects (Artūras Razinkovas-­Baziukas (LT), Valentinas Klimašauskas (LT), Jurga Daubaraitė and Jonas Žukauskas (LT), Kira O’reilly (UK/FIN), Nastja Säde Rönkkö and Ernest Truely (FIN/USA), Norman Orro (EE), Jenny Richards (SE), Viktor Timofeev (LV/USA), Kuai Shen (EC/DE), Christophe Leclercq (FR) and others) to reflect on and experience hybrid states, natures and landscapes in Nida. Curators: Vytautas Michelkevičius and Pakui Hardware.
 08A0078-001Artist's walk/performance/talk Unbecoming Sea by Kira O'Reilly during the 6th Inter-format Symposium, 2016. Photography: Andrej Vasilenko

Covered the Colony: Lithuanian National RadioLithuanian National Television15min.ltDelfi.ltDiena.lv

The shows were featured in: Mousse MagazineArt ViewerDaily-LazyFootnotes on ArtEcho Gone WrongLetmekoo.ltArtnews.lt

The shows were reviewed by: Viktoria Draganova (EchoGoneWrong.com)Tadas Jačiauskas (Lithuanian National Television)Alberta Vengrytė (7md)Lina Michelkevičė (15min.lt)Monika Petrulienė (Lithuanian National Television)Aistė Kisarauskaitė (7md)Agnė Narušytė (7md)Mindaugas Klusas (Delfi.lt)Ieva Balsiūnaitė (Lithuanian National Television)Birutė Rutkauskaitė (Lithuanian National Radio)...


508A1820-001Nida Doctoral school session CO-ACTION, VAA Nida Art Colony, Neringa, Lithuania, , 2016. Photography: Julija Navarskaitė

Vilnius Academy of Arts (VAA) and Aalto University School of Arts hosted the second Nida Doctoral School session CO-ACTION on 22nd-28th August. The one-week courses featured nine lecturers, academics (Ulrike Jordan (DE), Skaidra Trilupaitytė (LT), Laima Kreivytė (LT), Barbara Steveni (UK), Nina Möntmann (SE), Sofia Pantouvaki (FI), Robertas Narkus (LT), Teemu Leinonen (FI), Ariane Koek (UK)) and selected doctoral students who reflected on the value of artist placements in non-arts organisations such as business, political and science bodies. Nida doctoral school was curated by Justė Kostikovaitė. Partners ArcInTex ETN.


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The 7th Log of VAA Nida Art Colony. The paper version (160 pages) and digital format (PDF, 13.2 MB). This issue of Nida Art Colony log, which covers NAC activities during a 16-month time period (June 2014 – September 2015), embraces various geographies and notions of time.

A special Artnews.lt issue on “Hybrid Summer”. Vytautas Michelkevicius edited a summer issue of Lithuanian contemporary art daily www.artnews.lt. “Hybrid Summer” extends the contexts of the 6th Inter-format Symposium. Some of the texts were published in English on Echogonewrong.com.

Our artistic director Associate Prof. dr. Vytautas Michelkevičius presented his monography on artistic research titled Converged by Artistic Research in Lithuania and Beyond: Along the Contours of Knowing.

Open studios, VAA Nida Art Colony, Neringa, Lithuania, 2016. Photography: Julija Navarskaitė


48 visual art, performance or sound artists, curators, composers, dancers and scientists from 22 countries and three continents have been residents at Nida Art Colony from January to January.

Residencies organised
in cooperation with Culture.pl,
A-I-R Laboratory and
CCA Ujazdowski Castle:
Residency exchange
programme with
Vorarlberg land of Austria:
Ph.D students of
ArcInTex programme:
Artists in the curated returning
residents' residency programme
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Solo show Soft Ground of NAC resident Alicja Bielawska and ppening performance by Kristina Aglaja Skaldina, project space Sodų 4, Vilnius, Lithuania, 2016. Photography: Frederik Gruyaert

18th February | Resident Stéphanie Roland (BE) gave an artist talk at Klaipėda Faculty of Vilnius Academy of Arts

4th‒10th March | Residents Anne-Liis Kogan (EE/NO) and Sara Wolfert (SE) were collaborating with 9th grade students of Neringa high school. The artists held a workshop dedicated to drama and scriptwriting. 

19th March | Resident Rees Archibald (AU/ LT) held a noise workshop “Touch some noise” at the National Gallery of Art in Vilnius

5th May–21th May | Project space Sodų 4 exhibited a solo show Soft Ground of NAC resident Alicja Bielawska curated by Justė Kostikovaitė.

6th May | Resident Rees Archibald (AU/ LT) held a noise workshop “Touch some noise” for students of Vilnius Academy of Arts.

12th May | Resident Wen Chin Fu (TW/NL) took part in the art days “Brick” organized by the Šakiai “Žiburys” high school. The topic of this year was “Pamatai/Basis”. Wen Chin presented and performed with her sugar instrument “Tang”.

14th October | Resident Janina Warnk (DE) held a creative theatre workshop for the sudents of the Neringa high school.

19th October | Resident, interdisciplinary artist Julie Laenkholm (DK), gave a lecture followed by a discussion at Klaipėda Faculty of Vilnius Academy of Arts

27th October–12th November | Project space Sodų 4 exhibited a solo show Smuggling Borders of the Bodily Line by artist and Nida Art Colony resident Julie Lænkholm.

28th November – 2nd December | Former residents of VAA Nida Art Colony, five Ph.D. students Bastian BeyerDaniel Suárez, Iva ResetarJyoti Kapur and Marina Castan Cabrero, who are taking part in ArcIntex ETN (European training network), organised the exhibition Wolpertinger! What they do in collaboration? at VAA gallery Akademija.

Photo from the Monumental Painting and Scenography department's archive
In 2016, the Colony hosted as many as 22 international student practices of Vilnius Academy of Arts, which brought together guest tutors from the Netherlands, Finland, Scotland, China, Japan, and other countries. Look through some of the most memorable albums:
Photo from the Rejmyre Art LAB's archive


VAA Nida Art Colony has been collaborating with the AiR Krems residency programme by exchanging artists since 2013. Last year the Lithuanian artist Akvilė Anglickaitė (LT) spent a month as a resident at the AiR Krems in August. The Colony hosted the Austrian artist Barbara Kapusta in November. This year we continue this collaboration. The Artistic Board of AiR Krems has chosen the Lithuanian artist duo Pakui Hardware (Ugnius Gelguda and Neringa Černiauskaitė) who will do their residency period in Austria in July. Ines Hochgerner (AT) from Austria will spend a month at the Colony in spring.

The members of the Swedish artist-run organisation Rejmyre Art LAB visited us on 22nd April. They gave a presentation about the pioneering Post-MFA summer workshop Nordic Studio for Continued Engagementus, which was attended by one of the Vilnius Academy of Arts graduates Greta Vileikytė.

In 2012 Nida Art Colony and Neringa Municipality Council established the annual Neringa Municipality Grant for the professionals of visual and applied arts, design, architecture, art history, theory and criticism fields. Five scholarships were distributed since 2012. Žilvinas Landzbergas won the grant in 2016.

VAA Nida Art Colony also offers a possibility to be an artist-in-residency using the Curatron algorithm. We have received as many as 565 applications from artists who wish to stay at Nida Art Colony. Three of them have chosen each other and will be our residents in October 2017. Congratulations to Evguenia Jokhova (UK), Ditte Knus Tønnesen (DK) and Matilde Duus (DK).

Žilvinas Landzbergas, The Capital R., Si:said gallery, Klaipeda, Lithuania, 2015

Former NAC Board member, semiotician and art researcher Dr. Gintautė Žemaitytė has assumed a new position as Vice Minister of Culture.

Another of our former colleagues, curator of Nida Doctoral School Justė Kostikovaitė has assumed a new position as Cultural Attaché at the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. 

The NAC Board member artist Žilvinas Landzbergas was chosen to represent Lithuania at the 57th Venice Biennale this year. The artist will install the Lithuanian Pavilion curated by the Contemporary Art Centre.

Project TylĖjimai (Silent Walks) by Vitalij Červiakov, since 2010
This year, together with you we are looking forward to these upcoming events:

10th February – 12th March the fourth and final exhibition of VAA Nida Art Colony’s “Climbing Invisible Structures” project on show at Akershus Kunstsenter in Lillestrøm (Norway)

15th March is the application deadline for the residencies between August 2017 and July 2018 at the Nida Art Colony

19th–22nd May the 7th Inter-format Symposium Along Lines. Curators Thomas Thiel (DE) & Vytautas Michelkevičius

The summer exhibition When the Sea Looks Back, which will open during the Thomas Mann festival. Curators Suza Husse & Emma Haugh (DE)

20th–27th August Nida Doctoral School on Research Methods and Methodological Approaches in the Context of Art, Design and Architecture 

If you have reached this last section of 2016 review, you have probably realized that we have done quite a lot over this year. All of this would not have been possible, or would have been much less in scale without our partners and sponsors who put their trust in us in 2016, so we want to say thank you to:

Photos by Andrej Vasilenko, Živilė Etevičiūtė, Julija Navarskaitė, Frederik Gruyaert and NAC