Voting opens for 2023's Nordic and Baltic Young Artist Public Choice Award

Heidi Forsman
Heidi Forsman "Liminal Space." Source: NOBA - Heidi Forsman

142 young artists from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Finland are in the running to win one of this year's Nordic and Baltic Young Artist (NOBA) Awards. Online voting is open until November 26 to determine the winner of the 2023 Public Choice Award, with over 250 artworks to choose from.

The Nordic and Baltic Young Artist (NOBA) Awards is a one-of-a-kind international competition that showcases the works of the 2023 graduates of the Estonian Academy of Arts, Pallas University of Applied Sciences, Art Academy of Latvia, Vilnius Academy of Arts and Helsinki Uniarts. 

According to Andra Orn, one of competition's initiators and founder of the art platform, a record number of participants are in the running for a NOBA Award this year. 21 of the artists are from Estonia, 38 from Finland, 40 from Latvia and 43 from Lithuania.

"The outstanding number of attendees indicates that it is essential for graduates to be part of the regional art community. Also, visibility and accessibility are very relevant as it is difficult to succeed without them nowadays," said Orn.

"Participating in the competition allows art academy graduates to stand out to the public, wider audiences, and specialists in the field and to find new opportunities in the international arena. It also provides an opportunity to compare creators from neighboring countries and their artworks," she added.

Margus Meinart, head of the painting department at Tartu's Pallas University of Applied Sciences, said that Pallas' graduates had created works centered on some specific themes.

Several students touched on topics connected to childhood and memories in their theses for instance. These memories were discussed through the prism of loss and regret, and there was  also a search for common ground. Is that a sign of troubled times, a search for security and love?

Besides traditional techniques such as painting, drawing, graphics and sculpture, the competition includes video works, installations, and performances.

"Art enthusiasts have a wonderful opportunity to learn more about the work of young artists from the Baltic Sea region. As well as voting for your favorites, some of the competition works are available on the NOBA platform. Acquiring the artwork created by young artists can turn out to be an excellent investment in the future," Orn said.

Public voting is open until November 26 on the platform, where all the artworks and young artists participating in the competition are introduced.

The artist whose work gains the most votes will receive a Public Choice reward and a monetary prize of €500.

There are also prizes awarded by an expert international jury. The winner of the Grand Prix of the Nordic and Baltic Young Artist Award will receive a prize of €2,000 and the winner of the Painting prize receives €1,000. Several additional prizes in the form of art residencies and exhibitions are also up for grabs

More information about the artists and how to vote for this year's winners can be found here. 


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Editor: Michael Cole

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