Monika Radžiūnaitė (born in 1992) is a representative of the young painters’ generation of Vilnius. The artist’s characteristics are irony, the transformation of historical and cultural plots, which is not appealing to the actual, chronological, or thematic reality of past times, but playing with the new links between symbols, allusions, and images.
The starting point of her creation was the exposition at Kazys Varnelis House-Museum – an installation based on aesthetic and meaningful constellations of different epochs, a space of timeless museum sacralism that stretches beyond the boundaries of everyday life. Varnelis’ conception of space was greatly influenced by many years of practice in the field of ecclesiastical art, but there are no direct references to sacred art in the museum.
The concept of the exhibition is based on the creative error strategy developed by M. Radžiūnaitė. “Erroneous” reading is revealed in the artist’s recreated iconography, in the titles of paintings translated into Latin by using a Google translator, in glitch-gothic exhibition architecture. The viewer is provoked to critically reflect on the interaction between text and image, on the error, which is unavoidable even in the technological era, and on the excessively serious approach to the heritage of the past.
A new and yet unknown to us religion of modern images is born in the gallery. What image, which has always been a faithful servant of religions, could complement the sacred texts today? And what new religion would be born of today’s image culture? It is a play of images rising in the viewer’s consciousness, inviting to explore subjective visual experiences. On the main axis of the exhibition there is a museum exhibit – a monstrance case. Physically and museum-wise, the empty object becomes a metaphor of Radžiūnatė’s creative strategy – forgotten iconographic motifs in the paintings are filled with new meanings and create their own semantic system.
The exhibition will be opened in Kazys Varnelis House-Museum on the 31st of January 2024 at 6 PM, and will be open until the 2nd of October 2024.
Phot. Augustinas Bėkšta
Curator Indrė Urbelytė
Architect Gabrielė Černiavskaja
Graphic design by Monika Radžiūnaitė
Coordinator Dr. Daiva Vaišnienė
Translator Aistė Radžiūnaitė
Educator Brigita Rimkutė
Communication by Santa Lingevičiūtė, Aušra Leonavičiūtė
Artwork was lent by Roma Puišienė, Tom Robert Rennie, Evaldas Rimšelis, Darius Rugys, Džiugas Rumbutis, Mindaugas Vanagas