During her studies at the art academy in Vilnius, Adomaityte collected reproductions of artworks and clippings from newspapers and magazines, which she assembled on a series of cardboard charts. Interested in the systematics of archiving and classification, she found inspiration in Aby Warburg’s unequivocal Mnemosyne Atlas (1929): a collection of images from various sources, exploring associative relations that are nigh impossible to express in words. When examining discarded family albums of people unknown to her, Adomaityte tried to figure out the logic behind the lay-out of the photographs. Recently, she gathered piles ofVHS-tapes and books that once belonged to her father, who deceased when she was thirteen, questioning whether or not she could work with such personally charged subject matter. It was not childhood memories or nostalgic sentiment she was after, but a care for recording and conserving images and what they represent. In the end, preserving and displaying images in family albums, data banks, archives and indeed museums, is also a way of representing the world.
Transforming this visual information into paintings, Adomaityte relies on her great technical skills in tracing, copying and duplicating by hand. In paintings such as A Slight Shift in the Angle (2018), an image is reproduced more than once, creating the impression of a sequence or a loop. During the process of painterly reproduction, slight transformations take place. The phenomenon of ‘generational loss’ comes to mind. Copying from copies (analogue as well as digital) will inevitably result in loss of quality, as images irreversibly fade into hazy shades of grey. Adomaityte enjoys these moments, when the motive seems to be falling apart, verging on the edge of legibility. When she finishes a painting, she often can’t remember what the original source image looked like.
In the ultrafast circulation of digital imagery, images have a very short lifespan, where the attention of audiences diminish increasingly. Adomaityte’s work seems to reinstall a sense of duration into imagery, exploring how images may continue to be actual. ‘My work deals with images and where they come from and how they can continue to live on. Painting allows that.’
Author of the text
Dominic van den Boogerd (Quotes of the artist taken from a conversation with the author at De Ateliers, Amsterdam, 18 June 2019. Proofread by Jacob Dwyer.)
Živilė and Jonas Garbaravičius
Renata and Rolandas Valiūnas
Supporters of the exhibition
Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania, Lithuanian Council for Culture, Clear Channel
Supporters of the gallery
Plieno Spektras, Vilnius City Municipality, Art Fund, Vilma Dagilienė, Romas Kinka, Lietuvos Rytas, Ekskomisarų biuras
Gallery name: VARTAI Gallery
Address: Vilniaus g. 39, Vilnius
Opening hours: Tue-Fri 12:00 - 18:00, Sat 12:00 - 16:00
Open: 05.09.2019 - 11.10.2019