Viktoria Draganova

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Review on "Hybrid(…)scapes" & symposium at Nida Art Colony

06/2016

– Review / echogonewrong.com

Published on echogonewrong.com

Passing through the dunes, we approached the sea. The dawning sun was spreading a cool glow over the water, which looked like a heavy, fluid magma. Walking back through the sparse woods, we encountered a few tourists who were either moving to quiet, empty restaurants or were disappearing in the falling darkness on the way to their rented cottages.

The village of Nida lies on a narrow strip of land surrounded by water between the Baltic Sea and the Curonian Lagoon. Having been a remote and enchanted fishing settlement for centuries, intellectuals only noticed it in the late nineteenth century. Nida artists’ colony was became one of the first formations of its kind in the region of the Baltic Sea. Thomas Mann spent several summers in Nida where he worked on writing his novel Joseph and His Brothers. The poet Walther Heymann returned every summer over a period of thirty years to paint on the Curonian Spit.

Today, the peninsula and the sea area form a cross-over of political agreements, ecological regulations, technological interventions and a touristic economy. On the one hand, it has become a popular holiday destination in summer. On the other, it is a UNESCO listed world heritage site. The vulnerable dunes are a protected part of the Neringa National Park. In 2011, Vilnius Academy of Arts founded the Nida Art Colony. Since then, it has become a venue for artistic, research-based and educational activities. Most importantly, by dedicating its curatorial program to questions related to remoteness, post-tourism and the potentialities of site-specificity, the Colony has opened up to issues of globalism and its effects...

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Image: Pakui Hardware