1st contemporary art Lithuanian jewellery quadrienalle | 2005 06 29 – 07 15


The 1st Quadrennial of Lithuanian Contemporary Art is a representative overview of Lithuanian contemporary art, when the preliminary limited division into fine and applied art is abandoned.

The quadrennial will exhibit works created mainly in the last four years, so one of the main conceptual highlights is the problem of time, which is directly related to the artist’s work. The moment of knowledge, the need to know, the era – these are inseparable from the environment, where creativity is often a step towards transcendence. Here, the position of the artist is important, as is the assessment of the era.

The gallery “Meno niša” almost exclusively presents the young generation of Lithuanian jewelry. Its most characteristic features are irony, sarcasm, excellent knowledge of the craft, combined with a postmodern approach to the materials used and interdisciplinary.

Eglė Čejskaitė’s silver wire crocheting, which has become her “business card”, is not an end in itself; the objects she creates impress with their lightness and openwork; silver remains metallic, but it seems so fragile and light compared to the materials it highlights. In her works, the author combines metal with other materials: porcelain, bone, amber, fur. This is precisely where the mission of these silver laces comes to light: they are intended to catch a porcelain or amber object like a net, surround it, partially hide it, and partially highlight it. The artist plays with soft contrasts; from the silver net she creates flexible structures that can adapt to the body, wrap around it. They are flexible, playful, polyvariant objects that can be used in many ways.

B. Sietinšienė presents a very unique angle of contact between medicine and jewelry. It exploits the somewhat frightening, mysterious aspect of the medical world. Mysterious tools, the purpose of which is not clear, pills that hide the power to poison and heal – in other words, the ambivalence, bitterness and ruthlessness of medicine interests Beata. Her creations are usually called objects rather than jewelry. They are always technically excellent, conceptual and rational. They are intended for the body and elastically related to it. This time, the objects can exist separately – as “inclusions” encased in glass, but the author also offers the possibility of combining them with the body. That opportunity is very immediate. The technical solution is brilliantly simple: the silver skin is glued to the real skin with a medical patch.

Jurgita Erminaitė plays with the connections between jewelry and physicality. But this game is the most sarcastic and ironic. Presenting the hooks that should be stuck in the ears, the earring that is tied like a knot at the navel, the artist ironizes the universally flourishing beauty cult, fetishism and constant attempts to correct one’s body with the help of plastic surgery. Conceptual and sarcastic works of J. Erminaitė are inseparable from the addressee – a foreign body, to which they can be applied in many ways. Especially for places that are not too popular anyway.

Solveiga and Alfredas Krivičiai, perhaps the most consistent of all Lithuanian jewelry makers, use kitsch stylistics and symbols generously provided by pop culture. However, postmodernism also turned the concept of kitsch upside down, depriving the latter of its negative aspect and turning it into a storehouse of raw material for creating art. Thus, “Art in the Niche” demonstrates a self-aware kitsch that can no longer be called kitsch. In the modern world, hopelessly secularized on the one hand, and lost among various syncretic forms of religion on the other, jewelers create a kind of votives (which are not so far from the “karma-cola” worldview system declared by the authors).

Robertas Grigaravičius presents laconic and at the same time conceptual works in which the assimilation of materials and the search for unconventional functional solutions are equally important. The forms of the works are “clean”, minimalist, reflecting the author’s serious approach to the harmony of form and concept.

The authors demonstrate different and original approaches to the possibilities offered by contemporary metal art, art trends, different mannerisms, unique style and artistic quality.


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