The Baltic, a region typically seen as encompassing Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, has always boasted a dynamic art scene in Europe. One of its foremost contemporary art exhibitions, the Baltic Triennial, taps into that landscape of talent every three years—its 14th edition just opened this June in Vilnius, Lithuania.
Since 1979, the Baltic Triennial has brought together these nations’ diverse yet overlapping art scenes, which were then still a part of the former Soviet Union until its dissolution in 1991. As such, the exhibition has long straddled a shifting notion of East and West, offering a unique perspective on Europe.
Appropriately then, this year’s exhibition, which has brought together more than 60 artists from the region and from Central and Western Europe has been organized under the title, “The Endless Frontier.”
Helmed by Valentinas Klimašauskas, curator of the Latvian pavilion at the 2019 Venice Biennale, and Portugese curator João Laia, chief curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma in Helsinki, the show is anchored at the Contemporary Arts Center in the historic center of Vilnius, but spirals outward across various project spaces through the city. Each invited space developed their own autonomously curated projects that overlapped in some way with the core exhibition of the Contemporary Arts Center.
“The Endless Frontier” offers a compelling survey of young and emerging artistic talents, featuring works by Flo Kasearu, Zuzanna Czebatul, and Klara Hosnedlova in the main concourses of the Contemporary Arts Center. Dreamy surrealist paintings and small sculptures from Polish painter Tomasz Kowalski takes over the project space Swallow.
At Rupert, Lithuania’s prominent international artist residency, a group show curated by
Adomas Narkevičius features new works by Kosovo-born artist Flaka Haliti, Karol Radziszewski from Poland, and Finnish artist Jaakko Pallasvuo alongside two historically overlooked artists from Lithuanian’s postwar art scene, photographer Virgilijus Šonta and abstract painter Juta Čeičytė.