A Book "Tourists Like Us: Critical Tourism and Contemporary Art" is launched to hit the tourism season

July 7, 2014
Author Echo Gone Wrong
Published in News from Lithuania


On 3rd of July at 6pm we are discussing and playing the book “Tourists Like Us: Critical Tourism and Contemporary Art” in Vilnius (Titanikas, Maironio st. 3, Vilnius, room 325). Right after the intro to the book, we will get our hands on meeting with artists in Nida in virtual envinronment – Nida Death Match game (please bring your own laptop if you want to join). The game was developed by artist Yulia Starstev as a contribution to the Inter-format symposium on Critical Tourism in 2013. More of the contributions from this event are also present in the book.

This book (fragments in PDF) opens up a new field of discussion at the crossroads between contemporary art and critical tourism. As common ground for theoretical inquiry and artistic research, the notion of critical tourism asks us to question again our understanding of authenticity, the tourist gaze, the museification of landscape, the visual construction of place, post-romanticism, contemporary exoticism, site-specificity and global connectedness. The book specifically explores the role of the artist, and of the art institution, in the age of destination culture. How are individual and institutional practices changing in an era of hosting, hospitality, displacing and cultural nomadism?

Based on the comparison between two very different but nonetheless similar landscapes—the Swiss Alps and the Baltic Dunes and Beaches—art historians, environmental historians, geographers, explorers, curators and artists address the relatively new field of critical tourism in a transdisciplinary context. Together they consider how to critically approach and understand seductive and remote landscapes, against the backdrop of global cultural tourism. The book is not only a critical account of discussions around the topics but it is also rich in visual materials, documents and descriptions of artistic interventions in these two touristic settings.

This publication is the result of over a year of exchanges between ECAV—Ecole Cantonale d’Art du Valais in Sierre (Switzerland) and Nida Art Colony (NAC), which belongs to the Vilnius Academy of Arts (Lithuania). The book reviews the concepts, residencies, exhibitions, workshops and the symposium that formed this exchange between 2012 to 2013, in the context of the research and residency programme “On Hosting and Displacing: Artistic Residencies and Cultural Production in Remote Contexts”.

Edited by: Federica Martini & Vytautas Michelkevičius
Design Joseph Miceli (alfa60)
Publishers: Ecole Cantonale d’Art du Valais, Sierre, VAA Press and Nida Art Colony
Print run: 1200
Cover: paperback
Year of publishing: 2013
Number of pages: 264
Language: English

Contributors in the book:

Bill Aitchison (UK)
Benoit Antille (CH)
Sebastian Cichocki (PL)
Contingent Movements Archive – Hanna Husberg (FI), Laura McLean (AU) and Kalliopi Tsipni-Kolaza (GR)
Liesje De Laet (BE)
Jurij Dobriakov (LT)
Paul Domela (UK)
Barnaby Drabble (CH/ES)
Gilles Furtwängler (CH)
Wilko Graf von Hardenberg (DE/CH)
Petra Koehle and Nicolas Vermot Petit-Outhenin (CH)
Juozas Laivys (LT)
David Larsson (SE)
Henning Lundkvist (SE)
Federica Martini (CH)
Vytautas Michelkevičius (LT)
Sibylle Omlin (CH)
Agnieszka Polska (PL)
Ramūnas Povilanskas (LT)
Adrien Siberchicot (FR)
Sam Skinner (UK)
Markus Soukup (UK)
Yulia Startsev (RU/DE)
Laura Stasiulyte (LT)
Collective Synops (CH) – Maëlle Cornut and Sté́phanie Giorgis
Marika Troili (SE)