From December 2016 until June 2017 Arctic Culture Lab was running the residency program Baltno with artists from Nordic and Baltic countries: Lærke Posselt, photographer from Denmark, Iveta Vaivode, photographer from Latvia, Julia Heurling, designer from Sweden and Randi Samsonsen, textile artist from the Faroe Islands. Baltno was supported by Kulturkontakt Nord.
All artists had an exhibition or artist talk during their residency stay. In addition, results of the residency were presented in a group exhibition at the end of the residency program in June 2017. Many pictures are available on Arctic Culture Labs facebook page.
Lærke Posselt and Iveta Vaivode have been in Kjøllefjord during the polar night. They worked individually, but had intensive exchange. They had access to a dark room. During their stay, they showed earlier works in an exhibtion. Both visited Kjøllefjord again in June during the midnight sun and presented some results of the residency stay in a group exhibition.
“The ability to concentrate on one though for a longer period of time gave me the possibility to broaden my artistic practice and human experience. I see this residency as invaluable step in my growth as an artist. The applied techniques and experiments made here wouldn’t been possible in a life surrounded with daily routine. I feel truly privileged to take part in this residency program.” – Iveta Vaivode
“The residency has been very productive and at the same time a retreat from the goal-oriented daily life at home. The space and time away from my daily routines, roles and expectations has opened up for the possibility to experiment and a renewed belief in the process as the primary focus, which has had a big influence on my way of thinking about my work. These are some of the reasons that Arctic Culture Lab has helped me growing as an artist and clarifying my oeuvre.” – Lærke Posselt
Julia Heurling works on the interface between photography and pattern design. She applies repetitions as a tool for questioning and reflecting the visual surrounding through pictures. Julia was working with motives reflecting the coastal culture and designed a series of patterns called “Kjøllefjord Pattern”. The impressive arctic nature in Kjøllefjord and surrounding gave her the possibility to examine how repetition of a motive amplifies the feeling and experience of our environment.
“I will incorporate the results in my ongoing artistic research through PhD studies. I will also return to Kjøllefjord within a year to present work through an exhibition and hold an additional workshop. I will publish results on my website and eventually in my PhD thesis.” – Julia Heurling
Randi Samsonsen worked with the problems of marine litter which became clearly visible when the snow disappeared from the coast line of Kjøllefjord. A material that struck was plastic as it obviously is no part of the natural environment. Through a series of plastic-textile-sculptures she gives a new meaning and life to what we usually perceive as waste and questions different ways of handling plastic and plastic waste.
“The residency stay made it possible for me to disconnect and reconnect on many different levels. To the environment, artistically and personally. The isolation, and the unknown place made it possible for me to discover my way of working and letting me have peace to work. I took a decision to not bring along with me any material. This was to make it even more possible for me to connect to the place and location. The residency has had and will continue to have an impact on me as a person and as an artist. I can feel a change in my mind, and in my body.” – Randi Samsonsen
With support by