2023 04 18 - 05 20

Jonas Valatkevičius. Happy Rest of Your Life

  • Kuratorė

    Monika Krikštopaitytė

  • organizatorius

    Vilniaus grafikos meno centras

  • Parodą finansuoja

    Lietuvos kultūros taryba, Lietuvos dailininkų sąjunga

  • Informacinis partneris

    7 meno dienos

  • atidarymas

    2023 04 18, 18.00 val.

  • Paroda veikia

    2023 04 18–05 20

On April 18 – May 20, 2023, an exhibition of drawings by Jonas Valatkevičius titled Happy Rest of Your Life will be on display at Vilnius Graphic Art Centre’s Kairė-dešinė gallery. The opening will be held on April 18, at 6 pm.
Jonas Valatkevičius’ drawing exhibition is twofold. It simultaneously provides an exit into another, alternative (art) reality and brings the viewer back to the quagmire of brutal reality. Since Russian mercenaries and conscripts have been killing, raping, and torturing Ukrainians every day in direct proximity to Lithuania for over a year now, we could describe our experience of reality as constantly exacerbated witness trauma.
Jonas, an empathetic person (art critic, artist, curator, creative), who signs his works as EVL RBD, used to channel his disappointment, anger, and pain into colourful, archetypal works back in the times of peace, while war made his work explode into an even more acute, screaming chaos.
Drawing for Jonas is an expression of his personal reaction to the ‘nightmare incomprehensible to a sane mind’. Some of the works are direct reactions to the war context, but even those that at first sight appear distant from it could have been created while listening to endless Youtube shows on the everyday reality of war, for example. Shapes of childlike straightforwardness and uninhibited imagination, sometimes obsessively detailed and sometimes reckless in a punk way, help pain pierce through the viewers without fear shutting their eyes.
The artist does not want to be locked in the detached and secretive culture bubble, as part of the art world does, and instead sees himself in ‘some empty liminal space between the art gallery and pop culture’. However, neither does he want to create in a very refined, positive, or optimistic manner, so that the works would not end up in an advertising project or cozily decorate someone’s home: ‘I have realized that I want to be grim, pessimistic, tragic, and trigger unpleasant feelings. No hope, no optimism. I choose the middle finger strategy, because the world is on the way to hell.’
Jonas Valatkevičius (b. 1972) is known to many as an art critic, curator, and distinctive artist who was active in the 1990s and somewhat later. Jonas uses creative work as a (psychological) survival strategy. This is different from art therapy because the images speak not only to him but equally to the viewer. He has been holding solo exhibitions since 1997, and currently works in communication.

Other exhibitions

2024 04 09 – 05 04
The stone speaks. Exhibition of prints by members of Helsinki Litho Studio (Finland)
2024 01 30–02 25
Kunigunda Dineikaitė. Walking with a Swan
2023 10 28 – 11 15
Elena Grudzinskaitė. Mono-tik

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