There are three main participants in this exhibition: the author (the artist), his workspace (the workshop or study), and the artwork.
The first participant does not really need to be introduced – Savickas is a bright figure in Lithuanian art history: painter, art historian, educator, writer. A multicoloured personality who created art in the second half of the last century and at the beginning of this millennium. For many years he lived productively, constantly changing and transforming; the artist both represented his own epoch and influenced it.
Savickas’ workshop, which often changed locations and presentations, not only mirrored the social status of this artistic and cultural figure in Soviet and post-Soviet society, but also encompassed a physical and material representation of Savickas’ aspirations, desires, aims, expectations and even failures – the entirety of his passionate temperament. While there, it was possible to see, feel and understand where Savickas was coming from, who he was, and where he was going (to rephrase Paul Gauguin). His workspace was not just defined by four walls but also by a window to the city, to nature, and to his beloved wife Liza’s cherished garden; and by the surroundings of people, books both flipped-through and read, and other cultural artifacts and memories.
The fundamental purpose of the artist’s studio was the creation of art. Physical work met with scientific research and poetic inspiration. As a creation in itself, the study served as a shelter (or even a womb) where works were born, formed and finally brought into the world as artworks. These artworks can be categorised into stages or periods, as well as classified into thematic or conceptual groups – this has been done with the collection of works in the exposition. Sometimes it occurs naturally, as though paintings floated together like clouds in the sky of creativity – in the study.
The aim of this exhibition is to recreate Savickas’ study. Yet this restoration is only of a symbolic nature. In this sense, the exhibition is reminiscent of the Garden of Eden (or maybe more so the garden created by his beloved wife, Liza), or even Čiurlionis-esque (researched and appreciated by the art historian and artist alike). The universe promenades through it, recalling Savickas’ restless creative journey with his own heritage and downfalls; with the creation of paintings from sketch to the final piece; with the pursuit of motifs and images stuck in the subconscious.
The exhibition is curated by Vidas Poškus.
Gallery name: National Gallery of Art, Vilnius
Address: Konstitucijos ave. 22, Vilnius
Opening hours: Tue, Fri-Sun 11:00 - 19:00, Thu 12:00 - 20:00
Open: 15.11.2019 - 26.01.2020