THOUGHTS. OPINIONS. INSIGHTS. 10 Days in Switzerland for Lithuania’s 100th Anniversary


The organisers of 10 jours en Lituanie, 10 days in Switzerland decided to introduce Lithuanian art and culture at Locarno Film Festival by inviting people from different fields and carrying different experience.

JŪRA MOPE SEA magazine, which is also participating at this event, asked the participants of the Lithuanian group to answer three questions:

What did you bring to Locarno Festival and what are you planning to do there?
What message do you want to send to the world with your work?
What experience do you hope to achieve for yourself, your work, creativity and life?

The message of the 100th anniversary of modern Lithuanian statehood

Jolanta Budriūnienė, Head of the Documentary Heritage Research Department at Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania

We are glad and proud of the fact that this year Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania has been invited to introduce our country’s culture at the international Locarno Film Festival. Carrying out the exceptional mission of the keeper of the national fund of published archival documents, we have an opportunity to introduce our country’s historical and modern culture by providing examples of the most prominent and most significant Lithuanian and Lituanistic works. Therefore, the participants of the festival will have an opportunity to explore our book exhibition, which focuses on Lithuanian history, language, literature and art. We believe that the context also brings out the Swiss-Lithuanian historical connections and current issues that we are planning to introduce using illustrative examples.
With no doubt the message that we carry is the 100th anniversary of the modern Lithuanian statehood, the vision of the road to what we are today and what we hope to become in the future. Each opportunity to talk about Lithuania in any country means highlighting its silhouette, giving the foreign citizens an chance to hear of our major achievements, creative people, get them interested and open a wider gate for mutual cooperation. That is the major mission of the National Library.
It is only natural that we want to be heard and seen first. But not only that. Such events create an excellent opportunity to get a confirmation of what makes us interesting, exceptional, unique and what can we offer to impress others. On the other hand, this is also an invaluable experience in answering the question what makes us similar to other states and what partnership opportunities we have in strengthening our European identity, based on similar values and traditions.

Holograms of Innovative Lithuania and Leonardo da Vinci Fortress

Artūras Lukševičius, Head of Tikras Vaizdas MB which managed the HoPro brand

We are bringing the innovative equipment that we have developed and produced: 3D holographs and smart picture frames. During the festival we will introduce 3D hologram video animations – Innovative Lithuania and Leonardo da Vinci Fortress ( ).
During the event we will also introduce a global-level innovation – a smart picture frame. Using a transparent LCD screen, we can show 3D visualisations and have the viewers supplement the piece of art or highlight its major details (
Introducing smart picture frames we want to show how contemporary technology can be used to create added value for visitors of museums and galleries, showing them the major aspects of various pieces of art.
We are hoping to receive audience feedback on our solutions from the audiences of Locarno event. We are also looking for partners, who would be interested in organising innovative international exhibitions in 2019.

‘The world is not reproduced as visible. It is made visible’

Irma Leščinskaitė, artist

I’m coming to Locarno Festival bringing two of my compositions. The first composition consists of six paintings of different formats: interpretation of the Orchestral Suite No. 3 D-dur by Johann Sebastian Bach, Las Meninas by Velazquez, and abstract compositions with realistic miniatures. The second composition consists of three deeply coloured paintings. These works as if connect my current artistic period (combining technology and painting) with the times, when my works featured reflections of Baroque with abstract expressionism. This is a transition from gorgeous Baroque-style colour expression to 2D painting canvases with graphic drawings and realistic painted miniatures. During the opening of the festival the painted miniatures in the paintings will offer an opportunity to use augmented reality technology (introduced by the architects Gerda Antanaitytė and Andrius Laurinaitis). This will enable to implement one of the major educational purposes of the project – to bring painting to the level of interactive design. Exhibition audiences will be able to use tablets at the exhibition or their personal smart devices to ‘revive’ the oil miniatures and thus expand the historical reality, represented in the paintings, using technology. In the screen of the tablet the viewers will be able to see the miniatures, included in the painting, ‘coming alive’. The software with animation and sound elements will be entwined with the physical environment, enrich the possibilities of experiencing art, enhance the viewer’s interaction and provide more effective ways of articulating the painter’s idea, as well as the knowledge of Lithuanian history, conveyed through the art.
What message do I want to send to the world?
Message one. ‘The world is not reproduced as visible. It is made visible’. The idea, offered by Paul Klee, brings a huge and sometimes even incomprehensible aspiration – to create art, which would create a completely new world, an alternative for the real one, instead of merely making the world that we have now more beautiful.
Message two. In order to create art, you cannot draw inspiration and meaning from your own self. It has to be something more sustainable and durable than our short and ever-changing inner state of mind. For me that ‘something’ is culture. In order to give my paintings meaning I use the references of spiritual and moral experience from the cultural vaults. Thus the vitality and continuity of culture depends on tradition. And what makes the contemporary tradition of modern culture different from the earlier is that it is reflective, i.e. based on conscious and focused interpretation of the cultural heritage, created earlier.
Message three. The basis of creativity is my country’s historical-cultural context. Being a representative of abstract painting for many years, I’ve been drawing my inspiration from Baroque art. And that is not only because, looking from the historical perspective, Baroque is one of the steps towards the modern and abstract art. As we know, Baroque is an important period of culture and art in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (GDL) – the time of its rise and prosperity. Answering the second part of the question regarding my plans during the festival, I’d say that the connections between Baroque and contemporary art, as well as the necessity to include the entire artistic heritage of Lithuania into the circulation of contemporary art has resulted in the major idea of this project – an attempt to actualise and find new meaning for the Baroque GDL painting heritage using the means of abstract painting and creating a series of compositions that are modern and yet based on that heritage. This will be a very liberal interpretation of the historical-cultural context, created in cooperation with Zita Tallat-Kelpšaitė, who has her own broad cultural and poetic view to historical events, as well as a very expressive and individual hand in painting.
What makes the 10 jours en Lituanie special and grand is that it will take place in the presence of great personalities – A. Sciolli, P. Greenaway and A. Sutkus, who could be justly put among the other 21st c. figures, such as G. Steiner, M. Foucaul, J. Dewey, A. MacIntyre, P. Manent, R. Rorty, C. R. Rogers, etc.
I am honoured to represent my country and introduce my works at the event at il Rivellino Gallery, initiated by Arminio Sciolli, which is an integral part of the 71st international Locarno Film Festival.
Since we are going to create a joint series of compositions on the topic of Lithuania’s history and culture together with Zita Tallat-Kelpšaitė, known for her broad views, original thinking and sensitivity, I find our common creative experience very important. It will be interesting to hear a different view and find a common solution for the concept of the idea. Creativity is often determined by individual personal qualities that, I believe, we both have – rich imagination, rapid thinking, precision, flexibility, innovation, constructivism, curiosity, motivating stress, the need to improve and the ability to generate valuable new ideas. All that experience will influence further creative work and this stage of life.

Indispensable Defence

Jurga Barilaitė, interdisciplinary artist, painter, developer of assemblage, texts, performances and video art

In Locarno I will show a performance – Indispensable Defence. This performance involves painting on the wall using boxing gloves. Usually while performing I use the possibilities of my body and attempt to create an extreme state of being for myself, as well as include the audience into a rational and expressive action – extreme emotions, physicality and fatigue fit right in there. That is a piece about art and sport, aggression and tenderness, striving for freedom and, at the same time, the necessity to defend that freedom. This performance was introduced in 2000 and I was sparring for a total freedom of expression against stereotypes, especially the sexist attitudes in the Lithuanian world of art, turned against the stereotypical image of a woman and a woman artist. And now, eighteen years later, the major accents have shifted a little bit, but remain important to this day. Keeping in mind the current social, political tensions and public phobias all over Europe and the world, I find it important not only to discuss and talk about freedom, but also take action to fight for it. As Arthur Rimbaud has said, it seems that we need a ‘free freedom’. I hope that I manage to convey that message to the audience and, perhaps, get them involved in that free and crazy action.

Installation to be eaten by the party guests

Jolita Vaitkutė, artist

What I am planning for Locarno Festival is a tasty installation, made of deserts. This installation will create an image that will be eaten by the party guests. However, I hope that it won’t be the only thing that I’ll do – I’m looking forward to finding space not only for such a short-lived piece. I’m not completely sure of what that will be, but I hope to work with soil – that’s my favourite medium.
A piece made of food is usually something everyone recognize. What makes it interesting is not the aesthetic part, but the fact that it will be destroyed by the people gathering at the party, who will also be able to enjoy its taste.
Each journey and new people give a new spark for creation. I think that spark will be very bright.

...remembering the source of the nation’s spiritual strength and creativity

Zita Tallat-Kelpšaitė,
publisher of JŪRA MOPE SEA magazine

I am truly grateful for Arminio Scioli of il Rivellino Gallery for choosing JŪRA MOPE SEA magazine as the tribune for this important event. Introducing the art and culture of Lithuania, celebrating the 100th anniversary of its modern statehood, to Switzerland, the oldest democratic republic of Europe, is a responsible and very noble mission. I hope that the insights of artists and cultural figures, published in this magazine, will become an excellent introduction to Lithuania’s history, writings, language, literature, art and public figures.
My painting invites to remember the source of the nation’s spiritual strength and creativity, irrespective of the tools and forms, chosen by the artist.


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The magazine JŪRA has been published since 1935.
International business magazine JŪRA MOPE SEA has been
published since 1999.

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