art 2004/1
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Antanas Gudaitis. Natiurmortas pagal Van Gogo motyvą II. 1974, drobė, aliejus, 100x80,5

Liudas Truikys. G. Verdi opera Aida. VII paveikslo dekoracijų eskizas (Radameso teismas). 1975, kartonas, guašas, 74x106; LSSR valstybinis akademinis operos ir baleto teatras, Vilnius

Viktoras Vizgirda. Kalifornijos ąžuolai. 1975, drobė, akrilas, 101,6x121,9


The Anniversaries No Longer Important

by Jolita Mulevičiūtė

The 2004 is supposedly the year to celebrate the centenaries of several prominent artistic figures of the period of the first Independent Lithuanian Republic, such as Viktoras Vizgirda, a master of landscape, Antanas Gudaitis, a famous colourist, and Liudas Truikys, an esoteric professional of scenic art. A receding interest in their work is the indicator of the lesser importance that is placed on the artistic heritage of the Interwar Lithuania, labelling it ever more often as "provincial&", as limited by rural mentality and the Smetona authoritarian regime.
The Interwar period does not lend itself to a simplified definition. Yet it is unworthily neglected as it had been heavily charged with patriotic ambitions and the aspirations for the unification of the Lithuanian nation to establish the Lithuanian Republic. No matter how naive or unnecessary this experience might look today, it cannot be forgotten or overlooked, especially having in mind that other nations of the former Soviet Block had already integrated and made public their national artistic heritage of the Interwar period. It is a complex enterprise to attribute the Lithuanian Interwar art to any of the established Western trends or schools, especially because Lithuanians themselves lack the interest for this period. The M.K. Čiurlionis National Art Museum is the single institution taking a systematic effort to publicize the heritage of the years 1918-1940. The Lithuanian Art Museum shows none of such effort. The attempts to mount the exhibition of Viktoras Vizgirda witnessed to the general attitude of indifference. The longer we delay, the larger lapse of historic consciousness we will have to overcome. Spain has dedicated the year 2004 to the memory of Salvador Dali. How about Lithuania dedicating the year 2004 to commemorate Antanas Gudaitis?

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