Episode 4: Baltic Art Center – Artists’ Role in an Age of Climate Crisis https://naarca.art/testing-grounds-podcast/
What role can, and should, artists play in an age of the climate crisis? What opportunities do artists have in this context, and what – if any – are their responsibilities?
Baltic Art Center (BAC) is NAARCA’s Swedish partner. It’s based in Visby, the main town on Gotland, an island in the Baltic Sea. Gotland is a popular tourist destination known for its beaches, its medieval history, and – increasingly – its water shortages. The reasons for these shortages are complex – industries such as agriculture and chalk mining have played a part – but there’s little doubt that climate change is exacerbating the problem.
Helena Selder is the Artistic Director of BAC. She introduces us to Visby, to Gotland, and to our three contributors: artists Rikke Luther and Nomeda and Gediminas Urbonas, who work together as Urbonas Studio. All three artists are engaged with water, but in very different ways – Urbonas’ focus is on swamps, and Rikke Luther’s is on mud. They explore their shared interest in human-nature interactions and climate change, their contrasting approaches to their work, and the potential for art and artists to help us navigate our current reality – and, perhaps, imagine a different one.
Find out more:
Baltic Art Center: balticartcenter.com/home/
GRASS Fellows programme: balticartcenter.com/projects/grass-fellow/
Swamp Observatory app: nugu.lt/us/?p=1687
Swedish Art Residency Network: swanresidencynetwork.com
Contributors: Helena Selder, Artistic Director, Baltic Art Center; Rikke Luther, artist and researcher (rikkeluther.dk/); Nomeda and Gediminas Urbonas, artists and educators, Urbonas Studio (nugu.lt/us/)