LITHUANIAN QUARTERLY JOURNAL OF ARTS AND SCIENCES
Volume 19, No.2 - Summer 1973
Editors of this issue: Antanas Klimas, Thomas Remeikis, Bronius Vaskelis
Copyright © 1973 LITUANUS Foundation, Inc.
THE YOUNGER GENERATION OF GRAPHIC ARTISTS IN LITHUANIA
Graphic art was the foremost branch of art in independent Lithuania. It combined subtly the folk traditions and modernity into a uniquely Lithuanian graphic expression. This eminent tradition remains evident in the works of the younger generation of graphic artists in Soviet Occupied Lithuania, To some extent they managed to break out of the narrow artistic confines of their Soviet environment and to reflect a modern and a personal view of the world. It is unfortunate that the truly representative works of various artists cannot be shown due to the considerable politicization of art in Soviet society; nevertheless, the works reproduced here at least suggest the potentialities (and actual achievements) of the younger Lithuanian graphic artists.
Much of the graphic art, especially in the case of literary illustrations, is under the strong influence of folk art. Evident is unidimensionality, a decorative tendency, stylizing with a touch of color. A tendency toward the primeval, simplicity, the unrefined representation of objects and beings, a mystical perception of nature characterize many illustrations. On the whole, graphic art in Lithuania today is not noted for dramatic departures from the past, is created with limited and tried techniques, shuns experimentation. No doubt, the socio-political habitat of the artist is responsible for those limitations, for at least in some works of the younger artists we see a considerable creative potential. It is possible to perceive attempts to transcend folk art and the beginnings of a thoroughly modern, twentieth century comprehension of our planet. A trend, however small, toward the abstract, symbolic, surrealistic representation is in evidence. Especially notable in this respect are some of the works of the younger graphic artists, coming under increasing influence of modern currents of art.
All of the artists represented in this issue attained recognition in the 1960's. They are the now generation, attempting to express the views and feelings of the modern man, but at the same time frustrated by the limitations on creative freedom. Their art reflects the transition from a traditional to an industrial order, from bucolic to urban and more universal cultural patterns. In this respect they are still strangers in the new world, still groping for a uniquely own statement of it.
The graphic works are reproduced here without the knowledge or permission of the artists'.
N. VALADKEVIČIŪTĖ, Illustration For a Folk Song, Color Etching
A. ŠVAŽAS, From the Series "The Trial of the Match-Maker":
The Hanging, Special Technique
A. ŠVAŽAS, From the Series "The Trial of the Match-Maker": The Match-Maker I, Special Technique
P. REPŠYS, From the Series "My Motherland": Folk Game 11, Lithograph
P. REPŠYS, From the Series "My Motherland": Folk Game III, Lithograph
K. RAMONAS, The Burned Village, Combined Metal Technique
V. JURKŪNAS, Jr., From the Series "The Journey", Copper Engraving
A. TARABILDA, The Spring Begins, Linocut
V. ŽILIUS, From the Series "Vilnius", Etching
G. DIDELYTĖ, The Song of a Tree, Etching
V. VALIUS, The Planet: IV, Mixed Technique