December 2, 2020 / December 31, 2020

A Soul like a Bird

Painter A. Gudaitis (1904-1989) is one of the most outstanding personalities of Lithuanian art, who formed and developed the principles of Lithuanian modern expressionist and colorist painting. The initiator of "Ars" group, with his strong, independent character and endurance, he was able to survive in the most difficult historical circumstances. All his life, A. Gudaitis gathered young and creative people around him, he was an excellent pedagogue who left a bright mark on his students' creativity, and often on their destinies as well. The legacy of A. Gudaitis is extremely diverse and colorful. The constant hunger for knowledge, innate curiosity, interest in literature, music, theater, the work of Lithuanian and international artists created a wide horizon of the artist. The dynamism and contradictions of life and work are reflected in the ideological, symbolic and thematic multi-layeredness of his works, often painful experiences intertwine with irony or self-irony. A. Gudaitis painted still lifes, landscapes, portraits, created drawings, posters, scenery, prepared interior projects. His paintings are characterized by combinations of rich contrasting colors, bright paint textures, free brush strokes, motifs from folk art. The most important thing is the indefinite figurative compositions of thought. In the works of the later period, there are many paintings with symbolic, allegorical content. The exhibition shows paintings and drawings covering the last period of mature creativity, in which the moods of existentialism, the desire to break free from the limitations of the visible world and the chaotic meaninglessness of existence are evident. The motif of the image of the bird as a soul slowly traveling to nothingness prevails. The depicted characters take on the features of a self-portrait. Delving into oneself, into one's inner world and its transformations, reflections on the passing, shortening of time bring the artist back to the very beginning - the mother's face becomes prominent in the paintings. The pantheistic conception of the world and A. Gudaitis's special closeness to nature are also revealed in the works. People and birds here are inseparable from one world, equal participants of one being, as if they are in an intermediate state - between being and not being. - Algė Gudaitytė