Hansabank Group Art Award. Transverse

October 5 – October 28 2007
Kumu Art Museum, lobby


Valdas Ozarinskas presents a specifically applied installation in every city – Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius, where according to the rules of creation of an “open artwork” audio, video, urbanism, design, architecture, texts and other forms merge together. The name of the project is a term, which describes waves of various nature (and sound among them) and their movement. That’s why the process and indetermination of artificial act are equally important for the final result of the installation, which will not be finite and will fluctuate in different cities of travelling exhibition.

Frequently special pavillions – cities are created while making a film. Similarly to objects, created by this artist – they also are viewed best in a specially created architectural space. Frequently the artist makes this – he creates his own city in already existing city. As situationists, who found out London with a map of Paris and vice versa, Valdas will try to transpose psychogeographic maps of Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn.

Valdas Ozarinskas was born in 1961, Ignalina, Lithuania. He has graduated from Department of Architecture, State Art Institute (now Vilnius Academy of Fine Arts), is a member of Lithuanian Interdisciplinary Art Creators’ Association and Lithuanian artists group “Private Ideology” that is know for its innovative ideas. The group has won several awards: for Lithuanian Pavilion at the World Exhibition EXPO 2000 and in 2005 LT Identity, award for representation of Lithuania in the world. At present he is working as deputy director at Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius.

Valdas Ozarinskas is one of the most fascinating artists of the last ten years, and at the same time one of the most difficult to understand. As a student, this artist encountered Guy Debord’s Situationist Theory, the Structuralism of Lacan, Levi-Strauss, Barthes and Foucault, and Post-structuralism of Baudrillard and Derrida. However, in the last few years Ozarinskas has refused to identify his sources, claiming that knowledge of these would only restrict interpretation of his work. From time to time, artist friends help to produce Ozarinskas’ works. This enables Valdas Ozarinskas to defy the romantic myth of the autonomous artistic genius, and to widen his work with additional facets of content and style.

Valdas Ozarinskas’ works are never complete always undergoing a process of alteration. Their validity is a short duration, but in this brief time, they hit the viewer’s feelings exactly. Ozarinskas demonstrates that artistic concern with the present can be handled not only in photography, film, Conceptual and installation art, painting, but also in architecture, and sound design. Ozarinskas’ protagonists are often linked with social or political events. His theme is the moulding of individual behaviour through the mass media and social structures.

Hansabank Group has been giving out the art award since the year 2000. In the early years the award was given to Estonian artists: Marko Laimre – 2000, Ene-Liis Semper – 2001 and Marko Mäetamm – 2002. Since 2003 the award was widened also to Latvian and Lithuanian artists and in 2003 the award winner was the Lithuanian artist Arturas Raila. In 2004 the award given to the Latvian artist Gints Gabrans and in 2005 to the Estonian artist Mark Raidpere. The award is 5000 Euros. In addition to this the laureate gets a chance to organise a solo exhibition in all three Baltic countries.

Priit Põldoja, Hansabank Estonia, Managing Director: “By giving out the Hansabank Group Art Award we support the development of contemporary art in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Contemporary art needs much more general appreciation and Hansbank is really trying to contribute.”

Sirje Helme, Director of the Kumu Art Museum: “It is especially important that Hansabank has established its own art award. This does not signify only a sign of the open mind in Hansabank but also hopefully, is a sign of a broader understanding that culture forms the most important basis for the operation of the society.”

The press release relies on the texts prepared by Valentinas Klimasauskas on Valdas Ozarinskas.