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Eugenijus Antanas Cukermanas

Eugenijus Antanas Cukermanas.
Lacerta.
Drobë, aliejus, 66x41, 1990

Eugenijus Antanas Cukermanas.
Sans Titre.
Popierius, tempera, 50x75, 1995

Eugenijus Antanas Cukermanas.
Rufus.
Drobë, aliejus, 65x50, 1998


Eugenijus Antanas Cukermanas: “I Find Abstraction a Natural Means of Expression”

by Viktoras Liutkus

The career of Eugenijus Antanas Cukermanas illustrates the fact how the work of an artist who did not accept the postulates of Soviet art was totally ignored. From 1972 till the late 1980’s his works were a taboo in official exhibition venues. Sometimes they were even excluded from already formed collections. Museums would not acquire his works, art publications would not publish them. His solo exhibitions used to be held in provincial museums or marginal venues.
On the other hand, during that period artists were strictly divided into “real” and “amateur”. As Cukermanas had studied architecture, he was not considered a “real” painter. Finally, his work itself did not fit into the context of Lithuanian painting, in which the categories of “expressionism”, “emotionality”, “dramatism” and “primitivism” were considered an advantage. Cukermanas’ work represented and still represents a different concept of painting. Abstraction, consistently practiced by the artist, resided on the fringe of Lithuanian painting for several decades.
Cukermanas is a typical representative of the art of the 2nd half of the 20th century. His work is an example of contemporary art, which can be compared with the greats of abstract art of the 1950’s and 1960’s (Newman, Still and others); however, Cukermanas represents a small group of Lithuanian abstractionists of the 1970’s and 1980’s.
The committee of national awards in the field of culture and art granted Cukermanas the National Award for his works in which the artist suggestively talks about man’s existence.

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