art 2002/2

Jaunius Erikas Kaubrys. Autoportretas su kojomis. 2002, stiklas, fjuzingas. Fragmentas

Arūnas Aleksandras Daugėla. Re... 2002, pūstas stiklas, plastikas

Marta Gibiete (Latvija). In Seattle. 2002, stiklas

Vitrum Balticum II

by Raimonda Kogelytė-Simanaitienė

The international artistic glass exhibition Vitrum Balticum II, launched on October 11-November 15 in Kaunas, featured Estonian, Latvian, American and Lithuanian artists working in glass. The project followed the Vitrum Balticum I of the year 2000, the first event in the country of this type. This year a catalogue of the exhibition was published, also the first one in Lithuania, showing the art of glass.
The exhibition was looking at bringing together the artists working in this medium and providing impetus to this branch of art.
World experience demonstrates that specialized exhibitions have remained a unique forum to present one particular branch of art and its thematic, formal and technical potential. This is especially true of applied arts, where the form and the idea of a work largely depend on technology. On the other hand, there is prominent Western art tendency for pieces in glass to gradually loose their utilitarian and functional nature. Instead, formal, plastic and symbolic qualities are emphasized.
This year Vitrum Balticum showcased only the work of the artists who work exclusively in glass. In the future it could include artists who use glass for the sake of expressiveness in combination with other materials, quite a popular practice today in Lithuania.
The project invites artists from all three Baltic countries. Of the three, Estonia has the oldest and the best-established traditions of working in glass. Their work has always been modern. Today it demonstrates a prominent tendency towards conceptualism. Latvian artists have presented pieces of complex plastic form and of sophisticated technology. In the 1990s glass artists in the three countries have discovered and mastered numerous techniques in addition to glass blowing. Experiments in the field of glass technologies have also brought to Lithuania the guest of the exhibition, American Mark Eckstrand, who on his previous visit provided consultations for establishing a private glass studio in Lithuania. Albinas Elskus, an internationally known Lithuanian ex-patriot has donated his works, showcased at Vitrum Balticum, to the National M.K.Čiurlionis Museum.
All generations of Lithuanian glass artists have been covered by the exhibition.
The event has demonstrated the expanded spectrum of styles and interpretation in glass art. It is the result of the dominant sculptural tendency and a combination of different types of glass and technologies.