Ambassadors - Kauno Bienalė


Viktoras Diawara

Born in Lithuania, raised in Mali, Victor Diawara lived in Germany and Ireland before permanently moving to back to his mother’s home country Lithuania in 1997. Here, he formed “Skamp” – a band which became wildly popular in Lithuania at the end of the “noughties”. “Skamp” have released 10 albums, performed around Europe, won a number of music awards and were nominated for MTV European Music Award (twice).

“Afrodelic” is the new project of guitarist and producer Victor Diawara who has recently released his debut album “Dusunkun Hakili” (The memory of the heart) in June 2022. An intriguing mix of African music and electronic rhythms. Most songs were recorded in Bamako (Mali) with local musicians and singers. Victor later added electronic sounds and beats in his studio in Vilnius (Lithuania).


Eskedar Tilahun

Eskedar Tilahun - a refugee from Ethiopia. In order to find a safe haven, while a student, she had to cross the Sahara desert and cross the Mediterranean Sea in a small boat. Today, Eskedar makes her home in Vilnius. She is a mother, an entrepreneur and an active citizen of society. However, inspiration comes from Ethiopian origins: Eskedar links its main activity with coffee from the African continent. Out of love for coffee, art and history, “Eskedar Coffee Bar” and “Eskedar Coffee Terrace” opened their doors in the old town of Vilnius under the roof of the Lithuanian National Museum. Here coffee tradition, culture and people's stories come together.

Robert van Voren

Robert van Voren is Chief Executive of Human Rights in Mental Health - Federation Global Initiative on Psychiatry (FGIP) and a Sovietologist by education. He is currently Professor of Soviet and Post-Soviet Studies at the Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas, Lithuania, and the Ilia State University in Tbilisi, Georgia, and Executive Director of the Andrei Sakharov Research Center for Democratic Development in Lithuania.

Van Voren is a board member of several organizations in the field of human rights and mental health. Van Voren has written extensively on Soviet issues and, in particular, issues related to mental health and human rights, and published a dozen books. His most recent ones are On Dissidents and Madness (2009), Cold War in Psychiatry (2010) and Undigested Past – the Holocaust in Lithuania (2011).