I was born in Riga in 1983. I graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy (Amsterdam) audio visual department in 2016 and I’m currently based in Amsterdam. My artistic path has been unfolding step by step during the last 5 years. I have previously graduated from the Business school in Riga. Untill now I have been showing my work mostly in the Netherlands. My short films have been screened in the Eye film museum and in various festivals and events in the Netherlands.
My inspiration mainly comes from social contexts and paradoxes. How does our sense of autonomy relate to others? What role does the distance play in the interpersonal contact? My personal fascination with independence probably starts in my childhood, experiencing the happenings of the restoration of independence in the country I come from, followed by various struggles of a divided society. This fascination about coexistence continues in various personal situations and observations. A dialogue often inspires my work and the work also takes shape of a dialogue. I work in an experimental, free but precise way with various mediums – performance, drawing, text, video. The formats that I use in my practice are interlaced.
Performance in Rankas Manor (Latvia) during the Plain Air, Painting outdoors 2016.
Reading of a poem “Marvelous vulnerability” of Latvian actress and poet Biruta Skujeniece (1888. – 1931.). This poem is about vulnerability, beauty and fragility of various delicate moments in nature. Beautiful and wise words from one of the first known Latvian female poets. I found my wish to prolong the life of the beautiful old I have observed in this particular place during the time of my stay. The reading was combined with my contemplation on the subject of nature, human and vulnerability, and my experiences concerning nature while living in the Netherlands.
The setup of this performance was adjusted to the event, where other artists are painting outdoors – a young woman reading a book in an abondoned servants house, on the premises of the manor.
Rankas Manor was built in the middle of 18th and 19th century, and it had suffered from two fires – in 1986 and 1990. In the last 12 years the manor and it’s surrounding is slowly being restored.
2016, Amsterdam. A drawing, collage book made in collaboration with Steven Lenoir. The book was for sale in the art book shop San Serriffe in Amsterdam and in the Galerie Emmy Miltenburg, Schiedam.
It is a book about growing up and finding oneself in absurd social contexts and trying to orientate in it.
“The book Arta Balina produced in the summer of 2016 is wonderful pile-up.
As an object, it’s modern and old-school at the same time. It’s got 3mm thick (but ridiculously light) pages that got lasercut texts and images. But it also has low-tech pages with an air of old stencilmachines and copiers.
As a production, it’s both meticulous and raw. The laser cutting is so precise it turns even a quickly made notation into a ‘definite version’ of itself. On the other hand the book also features torn paper as backdrop, fuzzy photographs and under-and-over saturated printing.
As for its content, it’s both carefree and painfully observant. The drawings are quick, but deal with universal and lasting issues. The size and nature of the pages almost suggests a children’s book, but the content touches on subjects one can only get to by having lived quite a bit.
It results in a book of delightful complexity and contradiction.”
Maarten de Reus
tutor Gerrit Rietveld Academy
A moving metaphor. An open audiovisual sculpture. This work is my visual contemplation on personal space, body, control and connection. At the core of this video work is my contemplation on the question of personal autonomy and how this sense relates to other people. How much autonomy and space in real and metaphorically do I have in my own body, in my daily life, during my breakfast?
I am creating a moving sculpture in a form of a video. Before I started, I was wondering – how would it be to build a video like a sculpture? While I was busy creating the set – welding spoons and seats, I had a feeling that the objects, which took shape in my hands, will communicate by themselves. This work is an experimental mixture of controlled craftsmanship, freedom of performers and decisions about what has to be captured through the lens of the camera.
Having been working in a quick service restaurant during my last year of Rietveld, it has been a joy to extend the cutlery, leaving no other choice to my performers as to take it slow. Taking the time to eat and to be in the moment.
This moving metaphor a link with Jewish folklore that talks about feeding. Today societies that used to be open are more closed because of outer factors in the world, but we hang in and can only demonstrate our own tolerance and openness to the people we are confronted with.
One minute film about my first encounter with a human like non-human. In order to fit in his world I had to study the book he gave me. This video work won in The One Minutes competition – Communication with the non-human, curated by Melanie Bonajo. Video was shown in the Eye film museum in Amsterdam in 2016. and in various The One Minutes events, such as One Minute is Eternal – Celebrating 21 years of One Minutes’ at Power Station of Art (PSA), Shanghai (2019).
Video work made for the Does Not Equal film screening, W139, Amsterdam. The term Feminism has been ignored because of the negative connotations and not enough understanding of what it is. Therefore in a light tone we are questioning what feminism is for us.
2015 (April) —- Skinship, performance EYE on Art: Magnify – Magnifying, The EYE museum, Amsterdam. The performance “Skinship” in collaboration with Anna Dorota Radzimirska and Yulia Ratman. The subject of the performance is the lost language of physical touch. One performer is filming close ups of the physical interaction between the other two performers and the audience. The image is projected live on the cinema screen. The play between physical presence and live-filmed image became holistic. This project augments the classical perception in the cinema up to a bizarre possibility and create a literal experience with the story on the screen. The game of a creator, viewer and and the purpose of the location is present here. The performance took place the in the Eye cinema and film museum in Amsterdam.
Video work commissioned by Noord/Zuidlijn metro line project, Amsterdam. This video is inspired by the work in progress by Amalia Pica – an artist who is making an artwork for the Pijp metro station in Amsterdam. Large wall paintings where the colours of the Pijp district are dripping down the the walls of the metro station. I decided to make a journey through these colours and I wrote a travelling poem for it.
A man longing for nature and quietness in Amsterdam finds himself interacting with his surroundings and connecting to plants and animals.
A book with illustrations and photos. While sketching I am trying to remember a painting from my childhood which I haven’t seen for more than 20 years.
Video work based on a story from my family history. The story starts in year 1945.