In 2021, the international photo art festival KAUNAS PHOTO turns eighteen and becomes an adult. Therefore, this year the focus is on the threshold of adulthood, becoming an adult, the pros and cons, stories and feelings of being young, teenager, parent, mid-aged, retired, with or without grandchildren, hobby, job, retirement savings meeting the sunset of life. The exhibitions and events of the festival are related to general or specific issues of life choices, crisis, joys, traditions, stereotypes, taboos, social norms and the impact of big data society on age groups. The open call to the festival, which received over a hundred proposals, showed that a critical mass of photographers is exploring an aging society, its joys and challenges.
The artistic program of this year’s festival is curated by a joint team: Mindaugas Kavaliauskas, Kristina Juraitė, Donatas Stankevičius, Fred Boucher and Karolina Krinickaitė.
1. Kaunas City Museum Folk Music Branch (L. Zamenhofo St. 12), September 2 – October 30, Tue-Fri 10:00-18:00, Sat 10:00-17:00. Admission with Museum ticket. Exhibition opening on September 2 at 16:00 in the presence of the author Martha Thomas (USA).
June 14th, 2021 marked 80th year since the mass arrests and deportations of Baltic people to Siberia. Political figures of the Republic of Lithuania, officers, doctors, teachers, and farmers were all deported, along with their families.
My grandparents Kazimieras Klimauskas, Apolonija Klimauskienė, and Aunt Daina were among those deported to Siberia. They were loaded onto train wagons and exiled thousands of miles from their home. My mother, Vida, was in the hospital and was left behind. Orphaned, she eventually traveled to America, and was adopted.
After Lithuania gained its independence, I was able to meet Daina, and we have become close. In 2014, she showed me her writings about her youth in Siberia. I was impressed by how vividly Daina wrote. Though the stories portrayed the hardship of life in Siberia, they also described a joy that I had not seen in other accounts of deportation. I wanted to share her stories with others and use them as inspiration for my photography.
Each photograph is accompanied by a story from Daina’s youth.
The photographs are my interpretations of how Diana might have felt, or how the situation might have appeared through her eyes. I hope my photographs make the viewer momentarily feel the real experiences that Daina so eloquently describes in her writing.
The photographs are both silvergelatin and digital images. I am working to develop this project into a dual language book.
Daina is still living in Kaunas.
Martha Thomas has been photographing for over 30 years, using both traditional and digital methods to create her artwork. She has photographed in the United States and Europe. Her most recent work has been created with a heavy but beloved Hasselblad 501c. The images are then printed in a wet darkroom and toned with gold, sepia, and selenium.
This is a long-term project documenting the sacrifices of Kurdish Peshmerga in the fight to put down ISIS.
Speaking with several hundred Peshmerga, taking intimate portraits of the wounded fighters, their families, and documenting both the stories in the battle and their ongoing struggles to navigate post-conflict life. Through the work, I found stories of immense suffering. Fighters who took up arms, not because they were required to do so, but because it was right and it was what had to be done.
As they retold stories of watching family and friends killed in front of them and of battles they did not expect to survive, they simultaneously shed tears for the losses and for the pride they had in what their comrades and they had done.
All most all of the men showed severe physical injury. Arms, legs and eyes lost. Bodies so riddled with bullet and shrapnel wounds that simple movement created wincing pain. These men also showed the signs of the heavy burdens of the mental traumas, of PTSD, and of memories that would not leave them. Despite all they suffered, they often said they would go back to the fight again if ever called. They would do this for their children, their families, their people, and for the wider world.
Tragically, their suffering does not end having returned home. The men face new challenges, such as getting prosthetic limbs, ongoing care, providing for their families despite their debilitating injuries, and more.
Younes Mohammad (Iraq)
Younes Mohammad was born in 1968 in Dohuk, Iraq. He's a Kurdish freelance photographer mostly active on assignments for newspapers, magazines, etc. He spent his life in Iran as a refugee from 1974 to 1998 and graduated with an MBA University of Tehran. Photography was his passion, but he had no chance to follow it while the war situation was still continuing under Saddam's time. In 2011 he quits his job and starts his journey as a photographer. His work has been exhibited internationally and published widely in publications. He has received numerous awards. He is now based in Erbil, Iraq.
2. Maironis Lithuanian Literature Museum (Rotušės Sq. 13), September 2 – October 31 (extended), Tue-Sat 9:00-17:00, Thu 9:00-19:00. Admission with Museum exhibitions’ ticket. Exhibition opening on September 2 at 16:30.
I was carpooling when the idea of this project came to me. It was winter and the heating was set on the maximum. In the car was a gynaecologist, a retired woman, and myself. Sitting in the back seat, I was listening to the conversation. The retired woman, who used to be a lawyer, was talking about menopause and her heartache. She said she was afraid that her husband would no longer look at her, or desire her. In order to not «look her age», Sylvie had her wrinkles tightened and her breasts operated. This conversation made me realise that for a woman, getting older can be a source of anxiety, a burden.
“Men don’t age better than women; they are only allowed to age” —Mona Chollet, Sorcières-La puissance invaincue des femmes, ed Zones, 2019.
I am revolted by the absence of mature women in the representation of beauty, as part of a long line of generations who have been taught that women are beautiful when they are young and that as time goes by, their beauty deteriorates. Now that the movement for gender equality challenges many aspects of our society, I would like to question the still pervasive influence of patriarchy on the perception of our bodies. There are great women, actresses, singers, who shine in my eyes because of their talent, their charisma, their ideas, and who today have been robbed of their smile. Literally, their real smile, authentic and human. So many retouches, injections or plastic surgery to be able to continue to exist.
Photographing and interviewing women is a way for me to break this taboo and the conventions (conditioning, legends, illusions, ideals...). Stopping in time through photography allows me to immortalise them and to reveal bodies magnified by their stories and by a time that belongs to them. From a fold under a breast to the lines of their face, they reveal their sensitivity, their adventures, their wisdom, their joy, their depth, their soul.
What if they decided to age naturally and keep their charm as strong and radiant women?
Clélia Rochat (Belgium)
My name is Clélia Rochat. I am 23 years old, I’ve just graduated from a Bachelor in photography at the ESA le 75 school in Brussels. I am French, with Swiss origins, but grew up in Germany (Cologne).
After twelve years spent studying the harp and classical music in Düsseldorf, I took the decision to go further with documentary photography which I discovered through an old book of Robert Doisneau. It made me realize that it is possible to turn feelings into pictures.
This project is the result of one year of work. I’d love to go deeper with it, find the funds, and document women as well as the different ways of perceiving them aging, in other cultures than mine.
I only work with film-photography supported by my Beloved Rolleiflex. It makes me able to connect with these women in a more humble way, as it makes me bend the head, the eyes to look down at my camera before taking the picture. So that they can feel more comfortable with me and the idea to be photographed naked. That aspect is really important to me.
I also love to develop the films at home in the intimacy and discover the result of hours and hours spent talking, sharing with the women. That’s the magic of analog photography. I hope you will feel what my process and my work mean to me, but also what it could bring to all of us.
Thank you for the topic of this contest,
Best wishes and kind regards,
Clélia Odette Rochat
3. Kaunas City Museum Kaunas Castle (Pilies St. 17), September 2 – September 30, Tue-Fri 10:00-18:00, Sat 10:00-17:00. Admission with Museum ticket. Exhibition opening on September 2 at 17:00.
These photographs are part of Cristian's his upcoming series: "Memories of a man once there..." The project is about his father who died when he was three years old. His father was an adventurer like himself and his grandfathers, and this will be their last adventure together. To create the memories they have never had...
Intertwining the autobiographical and fictional this project seeks to capture the great "what ifs" of life, and threading imaginary narratives about Cristian and his father adventuring through the world together. The series is fundamentally about loss and existential loneliness, as well as Cristian his own mortality.
Cristian Geelen, born on October 17th, 1982, is mainly an analog photographer from the Netherlands.
Influenced by the all-time greats by the likes of Trent Parke, Joseph Koudelka, Sebastião Salgado, he decided to tell his own photo stories. And it made him travel the world with his main destinations on this globe being the Middle East and Asia.
Most of his work is from those kinds of journeys and is documentary based. But lately he is taking a more conceptual, contemporary, and philosophical approach for his personal work.
4. Kaunas Cultural Centre of Various Nations (Šv. Gertrūdos St. 58), September 2 – September 30, Mon-Fri 8:00-17:00. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 2 at 17:30.
I was born in a city located only 25 kilometers from the Lithuanian border. My adolescence was filled with the Suwałki Region landscape and its stories. Some of them contained foreign-sounding names and designations of places, the meanings of which I discovered with youthful enthusiasm, embedding the geography of legends in my real space.
Here are just a few of them: Jegla/Eglė (female name meaning spruce; queen of snakes), Ruta/Rūta (medicinal plant with the power to reverse spells and ward off evil, considered a symbol of purity and a female name), Żaltis/Žaltys (snake, grass snake - the fairy-tale king of snakes and the god of rivers and lakes), Wiżajny/Vežys/Weyze (from Lithuanian - crayfish. A former town, now a village on the Polish-Lithuanian border, famous for its delicious crustacean dishes. It is said that King Władysław Jagiełło himself admired their taste), Szurpiły/Šiurpus pilis (a terrible castle, one of the most important Yotvingian settlements in the Sudovia region), Gremzdel/Gremzdlai (drowning, a wetland. A village where my almost 100-year-old house stands), Wigry/Vyrai (brave men - one of the legends derives the name Wigry from the hermits that Władysław Jagiełło met on the Wigry Peninsula), Suwałki/Suvilkai (in the Lithuanian dialect means vagrants. Supposedly they founded a city), Sejny/Seiniai (old men. One legend says that old knights of Jagiełło, returning from the war with the Teutonic Knights, decided to found a town in the bend of the river, today called Marycha. Seina in the Yotvingian language means the grass abundantly growing on the shores of water reservoirs).
The etymology indicates that the roots of these words are to be found in the languages and mythology of the Balts tribes. Their lands in the 13th century encompassed Central and Eastern Europe, extending widely from the southern Baltic coast to the Gulf of Riga. They left many material traces, also in the form of settlements. These places fit into the landscape in a special way and connect today's Polish-Lithuanian borderland. The unity of these lands along with the social tissue has been destroyed many times in history. Successive borders divided families and shattered the cultural heritage of human communities. Today, however, the last iron curtain is fading into oblivion, even though its sinister relics still remain visible.
The journey across the borderlands closest to me (Poland and Lithuania) was a search for common points. The Lithuanians who live there are one of the two Balts nations that have survived to this day. It is in their language that the mythological names of places and names that once fired my imagination are hidden. The path I have traveled has allowed me to meet many extraordinary people and their warm hospitality resulting from a deep understanding of the nature and tradition that surrounds us. They are the heroes of my project.
5. Kaunas Municipal Vincas Kudirka Public Library – Department of Youth, Art and Music (A. Mapu St. 18), September 2 to October 9 (extended), Mon-Fri 11:00-19:00, Sat 10:00-16:00. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 2 at 17:45.
The number of centenarians worldwide increased quickly in the last ten years and it is expected to even rise more in the future. In Germany, according to recent studies, every third newborn girl in 2019 will reach the age of 100. So it will soon no longer be a rarity for many of us to celebrate our 100th birthday. Many of the very elderly people today live alone and still independently in their homes. How do they manage everyday life? What’s on people’s minds? What skills do you perhaps only acquire at such a ripe old age?
±100 tells the story of people with the age between 90 and 100 years who are still able to look after themselves despite aging and its corresponding difficulties in modern society. The work reflects their personal perception of the world around, the happiness and unhappiness, the war and peace within a wide variety of life realities and living spaces.
People of this age are often perceived or portrayed as frail and weak. And yet it is precisely these people who have a remarkable degree of resilience, strength, and willpower - Despite disease, pain, and the limitations that come with it, despite being traumatized by the war and losing loved ones.
Magdalena Stengel was born in 1987 and grew up in South Germany. After some years as of assistantship in Stuttgart, she studied Photography at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts in Dortmund. She attended the postgraduate master class of Prof. Ute Mahler and Ingo Taubhorn at the Ostkreuzschule für Fotografie in Berlin. Magdalena Stengel now lives and works as a freelance photographer in Bremen.
6. KTU III Chamber, 2nd floor (Laisvės Ave. 13), September 3 – October 31 (extended), Mon-Fri 8:00-17:00. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 3 at 18:00.
The Suspended Youth is a series of portraits of young Italian athletes, set in their homes, forced to give up school (in presence) and their sport activities.
An unpredictable condition, if we consider that after the end of the lock down since last spring, the beginning of the summer had brought moment of apparent normality , that we would define today as “misleading normality”. The new restrictions caused by the increase of the infection covid-19 of last autumn, the return of the DAD (Distance learning ) and the closure of the several sports club made all the teenagers weaker, sadder and more incredulous.
Locked in for months, children live their life in the shadow of tablets and smartphones.
Nobody talks about the drop in their school performance, their weight increase, about their enthusiasm and happiness that fade away with the lack of daily contact with their schoolmates, their friends, spending more and more time on social networks although being under 14. Without school and sport these restrictions are perceived as a punishment.
The pressure the teenagers feel is really high, especially for competitive athletes. They are used to practice sport regularly, the new status changes their biological rhythm and moods; without trainings, competitions, they feel lost, empty, suspended.This depressing effect among teenagers, is a national social alarm born in Italy. The discomfort could change into a disturbing psycho-depressive catastrophe for the new generation all over the world.
Rosa Mariniello (born in Ottaviano (NA) in 1970) is an photographer based in Rome. She studied Architecture at Federico II University of Napoli. She worked several years as architecture photographer in Napoli. In Rome she worked as set-photographer for many Italian film productions from 2006 to 2016. From 2011 she is member of European News Agency & G.N.S.PRESS as International photo-reporter (21-01-7192 8-IPC). Artist for ‘Doni’Colletion for Imago Mundi Project in 2016. She is working at the projects: Urban Trip(le)s, Vitiligo, Lucania, The Suspended Youth and At km 5.6.
Awards 2020: World Report Award (Short Story Category); Kuala Lumpur Photo Essay Project Grant; Portraits Hellerau; The Independent Photographer.
Exhibitions 2020: Dresden, Germany; Berlin, Germany; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Lodi, Italy.
Publications 2020: XL Semanal, Spain; Mind, Italy. 2021: Mind.
7. VMU Multifunctional Center for Studies and Research (V. Putvinskio St. 23), September 3 – October 30, Mon-Fri 7:30-21:00, Sat 8:00-18:00. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 3 at 18:45.
Different studies point that over the coming decades two thirds of the world population will be living in an urban area. The “Animal Within” investigates the life of the young generation of Lithuania growing and living in the countryside.
I tend to believe that when you're a kid or a teenager growing in contact with nature, a “wild” and raw character is formed and developed.
With the world more and more virtually connected how does the human relation with nature is affected? What are we missing? “The Animal Within” emphasizes and questions the relation between teenagers and young adults with nature and animals in a very specific transition age.
Fábio Cunha studied Architecture at Porto's University (FAUP) and obtained a Master degree in Photography at EFTI - Madrid. He develops a practice within installation and photography.
He exhibits regularly since 2014 in different photography festivals and galleries. He published his photobook “Zona- An Investigation Report” in 2017, which received DOCfield16 Dummy Award Fundación Banco Sabadell - Barcelona, being selected as one of the best photobooks of the year by PhotoEspaña. Recently he received the “Parallel Award” for the group exhibition “Urgent Arts of Living” at Kaunas Galley. He is currently developing artistic residencies within the context of Encontros da Imagem Photography Festival and Kaunas Artistic Residency.
He teaches at Atelier de Lisboa and ETIC, wheres he coordinates the 2 year photography course. His work is represented in public and private art collections.
8. Kaunas Municipal Vincas Kudirka Public Library – Park Branch (P. Lukšio St. 60), September 3 – October 22, Mon-Fri 11:00-19:00, Sat 9:00-15:00. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 3 at 16:30.
We come from Goleszów, one of these places that are simply there on a map. Not a Nowheresville, but not a shadowy town of crooked streets and mysterious doings either. Anyway, it’s in Goleszów that we had our eclectic band of friends, our favourite haunts and our business to attend to. It’s at the beginning of the 90s, Freddie Mercury has just kicked the bucket—to be honest, he was a talented guy who had a few good numbers, but his moustache was never a part of our story. We are a gang of guys in worn-out jeans, we give barbershops a wide berth, and we drop our butts on the ground.
The old cement factory is still here, dominating the view from windows, and its brick chimneys seem to reach to the sky. But screw the sky! We’d rather drag ourselves, flat broke, from one bar to the next. Only yesterday Solidarity was overthrowing the commies, today capitalism promises our parents the moon. But screw the moon! Screw your money! Everything will collapse soon, your lying world will collapse, and we will have a share in the crash. But tonight we’re throwing a bender. Don’t worry, it’s not that moment yet, although you should know that something powerful is brewing in our minds. We have our own music, we’ll turn sixteen soon, we want to get laid and to grow up with class.
Our friendship has already survived thirty years, and we aren’t worried about the next thirty. We have been and will be brothers. But not everything went as planned. The dream of our own band and life on the road went up in smoke. We have frittered some ideas away, others were throttled by boredom. Time has not stopped, although for a long stretch we were convinced we had it in the palm of our hands. But somehow the bastard managed to wriggle out and start running away. First came universities, various schools and various towns. After that each of us blazed his own trail far from Goleszów. Several places have changed beyond recognition, some have been lost forever. This is also a story of our memories.
That’s why we are coming back. And by the way, we have started patronizing the barber.
MICHAL SOLARSKI (United Kingddom)
Michal Solarski is a London based photographer.
After graduating in Poland with a Masters in Politics, Solarski moved to London and studied at The London College of Communication where he earned an additional masters in Documentary Photography.
He divides his professional career between advertising and his personal projects, traveling extensively between the UK and Eastern Europe where he produces the majority of his work. Most of his photography is strongly based on his own background and experiences, with a strong concentration on migration and memories.
Solarski's work has been widely exhibited and published in many different publications including The Guardian, TIME, National Geographic, WIRED, among others.
TOMASZ LIBOSKA (Poland)
Tomasz Liboska lives in Chorzow in Upper-Silesia, Poland. He graduated from Anthropology of Culture at Silesian University in Cieszyn, Poland, and Institute for Creative Photography in Opava, Czech Republic. He’s been working on his projects on Silesia for over 10 years. In his works he tries to find how people exist in society.
Most important exhibitions were presented during Photomonth in Krakow, Hereford Photography Festival, New York Photo Festival, Athens Photo Festival, Belfast Photo Festival,
His photographs were published in The New York Magazine, GEO, Newsweek, LaRepublica, Polityka, Duży Format, VICE among others.
He is a winner and finalist of many internationally recognized awards and grants.
9. Near Kaunas Castle (A. Jakšto St.), September 3 – October 31. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 2 at 17:15.
South Korea, Jeju island, known for its characteristic basalt volcanic rock, sits off South Korea. It is the home of the renowned Haenyeo or women of the sea who free dive off the black shores of Jeju harvesting delicacies from the sea. Wearing thin rubber suits and old fashioned goggles, this aging group of women are celebrated as a national treasure and inscribed on the UNESCO list of Intangible Cultural Heritage, but the tradition is slowly fading as fewer women choose this extremely hazardous profession.
Today, the majority of Haenyeo are over the age of 50 and many are well over 70. In a society obsessed with education, the future of this physically arduous activity would appear bleak, and yet… Efforts by the government and local communities to preserve and promote this ecological and sustainable lifestyle have brought renewed interest from young people disillusioned with urban life and eager to return to their roots. It is perhaps a renaissance.
Alain Schroeder is a Belgian photojournalist born in 1955. In 1989 he founded Reporters, a well-known photo agency in Belgium. He has illustrated over thirty books dedicated to China, Persia, the Renaissance, Ancient Rome, the Gardens of Europe, Thailand, Tuscany, Crete, Vietnam, Budapest, Venice, etc. Belgian titles include «Le Carnaval de Binche vu par 30 Photographes» and «Processions de Foi, Les Marches de l’Entre-Sambre-et-Meuse ». Publications include National Geographic, Geo, Paris-Match,…
He has won many international awards including a Japan Nikon Award 2017 for the Rohingya series, the TPOTY Travel Photographer of the Year Award 2017 with the series Living for Death and the series Kushti, and 1st prize at World Press Photo 2018 for the series Kid Jockeys in the category Sports Stories, 3 Istanbul Awards, 2 POYI, 2 World Press 2020 for the series Saving Orangutans, … and participated in numerous exhibitions worldwide.
10. Vienybės Square, September 3 – October 31. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 3 at 19:00.
I am 81 years old, my partner 92. On my 70th birthday, I woke from a dream in which I had rounded a corner and seen the end. This disturbing dream moved me to begin photographing the two of us, chronicling our time of growing old. Now, eleven years out, he and I face numerous physical challenges: decreased mental acuity, especially memory; the diminished quality of our skin, hair and teeth; mild disfigurement; as well as the need to tend vigilantly to our balance, hearing, sight, physical agility and getting adequate sleep. Inside we are learning to accept what is, sometimes going from anger, impatience, sadness or fear to seeing the humor in the idiosyncrasies of growing old. We realize that if we can be comfortable with our own aged appearances and limitations, then the potential exists that others will become more comfortable witnessing this transformation and possibly become more comfortable with their own. I have entered taboo territory, aging and death. The creation of these photos is part of my own way of dealing with the inevitability of dying by bringing attention to it and accepting it. I have come to embrace them as a tribute not just to our lives but also to the demanding and courageous task of growing old gracefully, graciously, and aware. A certain wisdom is evolving from years of living and observing, eventually unveiling previously unseen associations, patterns and similarities. I am gaining a much-appreciated perspective that was not available to me.
Marna Goodrich Clarke obtained BA degree in mathematics, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, later studied Photography at Hartford Art School; University of Connecticut, Storrs; and International Center of Photography, NYC. In 1980s she was a regular photographic contributor to New England press, worked as Adjunct Instructor of Photography, Hartford Art School, University of Hartford until 1991. Since the middle of the second decade of the 21st century, her works have been exhibited in collective exhibitions, published by photography-related portals and acquired by public and private collections in the USA and abroad.
11. Square next to A. Juozapavičiaus Ave. 57 (relocated from the venue at the foot of Žaliakalnis Funicular), September 3 – October 31. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 3 at 18:30.
Paola says she has now entered the "third phase" of her life. She has a lot of experience behind her, two broken weddings and now that she retired she has many new things to do. She asked me to portray her because she wanted to be looked with "the eyes of an artist". We talked a lot about her relationship with her family and the nostalgia for a carefree past that can’t come back. The memories of her youth are so vivid that it seems just few years has passed.
I suggested her to project the photographs of her family albums onto her naked body to create a stronger link between the past and the present. The transformation of her aspect is not accompanied by an aging of the mind: Paola is still ready to rediscover herself and to show her physical appearance with great courage and with all her imperfections.
These images don’t tell only her story: they are an invitation to not conceal our bodies and to enter, when the time comes, with our heads held high into the third phase of our lives.
Francesco Amorosino (Italy). Born in 1984, I grew up in Rionero in Vulture, in the South of Italy. I live in Rome where I work as a photographer and educator. I'm the owner of il FotoStudio, a space where I shoot and I organize exhibitions and courses. I’m a teacher at DAM Digital Art and Media academy and I collaborate with smART Foundation teaching in courses for children.
I got a three years Master in Photography in Rome at Scuola Romana di Fotografia and a two years Masters in Journalism at Università della Basilicata.
In 2016 I won the Sony World Photography Award in Still Life category with the work “Migrant Tomatoes”.
I participated in several exhibitions. Among the last ones: “Let There Be” at Manifest Gallery in Cincinnati and InBound 10 at Candela Books + Gallery in Virginia where I showed my recent photosculptures on marble.
12. Square next to A. Juozapavičiaus Ave. 57, September 8 – September 30 (exhibition time shortened due to AB “Kauno Energija” pipeline works at the exhibition site). Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 8 at 18:30 in the presence of the author Adas Vasiliauskas.
What do photographers do when all planned future photo sessions are cancelled and all people, trying to avoid any possible human contact, stay at their homes and you can't get anyone to the photo session? In 2020 Lithuania with the rest of the world went into the lockdown, but photographer Adas Vasiliauskas wasn't going to give up – he came up with a brilliant solution and idea. “I was thinking, thinking and a thought came to me that if people can't come to me and I can’t go to them in person also, maybe I could take photographs through a safe distance. People stay at home and what do all homes have in common? Windows and balconies! They usually are located high enough so a drone was the best solution – you ask people to come to the window or outside to the balcony, fly up high with a drone and shoot them“. Mechanics were quite simple, but Adas was in doubt who would even think about such a photo session. In order to prove that such pictures are possible he shot himself with a whole family standing in their home window and asked a friend to pose lying in a hammock in his balcony. Pictures were uploaded to social media and things got hot shortly after! Hundreds and thousands of likes and a lot of messages from those willing to be shot with a drone. “I don’t like sad and thoughtful photo sessions, I knew that I wouldn’t ask people to pose standing with angry or serious faces looking into an insecure future. I wanted to show that people, even during such dramatic and uncertain times, when they must stay at home, don’t just sit and cry, they can be happy and cheerful. That’s why I proposed such ideas which would look interesting and funny. People were also very creative and the project took off and flew all around the world“. More than 160 families were photographed during the course of 3 months.
Adas Vasiliauskas is a commercial photographer, photo artist and photography lecturer, working in the photography field actively since 2005. Shooting advertising, weddings and had more than 15 photo exhibitions created with different photography techniques.
In 2020 during first quarantine in Lithuania Adas was widely mentioned by international press and TVs all around the world with his photo project “Portraits of Quarantine” in which he photographed people, grounded by quarantine in their homes, in safe distance, with a help of a drone, posing in their windows and balconies. Project was mentioned in all Lithuanian press, TV channels and online portals. More than 300 international articles, 20+ TV interviews. Appeared on BBC, ABC, South Korea, Spain and other news. Articles posted on such sites as CNN Arabic, Business Insider, The New York Post and others.
13. Draugystės Park (Kovo 11-osios St.), September 10 – October 31. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 8 at 17:00 in the presence of the author Elena Krukonytė.
Ongoing project. 2020 –…
Members of the early Generation Z were born between 1995 and 2001. Photographer Elena Krukonytė was born in 1998 and the creation of this project was inspired by her own reflections on the relationship with time. Raising existential questions — why am I who I am? — she searched for answers through looking at peers. The young people who were involved in the project are members of generation Z (except for three people who were born a few years earlier but still have similar outlook and experiences as others involved in the project). Each of them was photographed in their own chosen location, which reveals what contributed to the formation of their personality.
What unites members of the early Generation Z? Inevitably, it is technology that they grew up with and which creates new forms of self-expression - almost each of them have a virtual version of their personalities expressed on various social media platforms to a global audience. Young Lithuanian people could also be called the Generation of Freedom raised by parents who fought for the independence of Lithuania. Early Generation Z is also connected by the memory of a young, free Lithuania, a country that has just regained its independence and has not yet joined the European Union. The ideas, popular culture and tendencies of that time formed the national and aesthetic identity of young people (this topic is being analysed in more detail on Elena Krukonytė's instagram account @90s_Lithuania where she archives and examines Lithuanian culture artefacts of the 90s and early 2000s). Traditional values, such as nature, home and family, remain in the minds of Generation Z. Basically, this generation could be considered dual - modern, technology-dependent, but also romantic, appreciating tradition and nature.
Photographer Elena Krukonytė notices that she subconsciously feels a sense of commonality: "We are united by the memory of young Lithuania, freedom, the desire to explore the world and make sense of our existence. As we go through the same stage of life, we realise that we are becoming adults and starting to feel responsible for our lives and the world. Therefore, as we develop in individual areas of interest, we create the actual reality of our time and our own".
Elena Krukonytė was born in 1998 in Vilnius, and has been involved in photography since childhood. She graduated from Vilnius Žirmūnai high school, where her first personal exhibition of portraits of her peers took place.
Elena Krukonytė graduated from Vilnius College of Design with a bachelor's thesis entitled "Portrait of the Early Generation Z". She also studied with an exchange programme at the Royal Academy of Arts, The Hague.
Since 2016, Elena Krukonytė has been working in the field of fashion photography, and has collaborated with such Lithuanian designers as Ramunė Piekautaitė, Juozas Statkevičius, and Emilija Poplavskytė. In 2016 she started an archive of Lithuanian visual cultural artefacts from the 90s and early 2000s, available on Instagram @90s_Lithuania. In 2018, she began her journey in artistic photography.
In her works, Elena Krukonytė explores the relationship with time, the environment, and self. Her other public projects include "Cyber Flora", "Phantasmagoria in 6".
14. Kalniečiai Park (next to Savanorių Ave.), September 3 – October 31. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 3 at 17:00.
June 2031 will be the official date for my retirement. In my annual information letter I see a small three-digit amount that is my current pension entitlement. I wonder how it will be for me, being old and poor, technically outdated, hard of hearing, visually impaired, forgetful and confused, maybe lonely and excluded from society.
My photobook from 2019 shows street snapshots of older woman and cities that symbolise my future life in a dystopian new world.
Uta Genilke, born in 1964, is a graphic designer and self-taught photographer. After living in Hamburg and Hong Kong, she settled in rural northern Germany. She uses snapshots and archive material, transferring her dreams, longings and fears into books and zines, all self published in mini editions.
- Neue Schule für Fotografie Berlin, 28.2.-7.6.20, REIZ, curated by Eva Bertram, showing pictures from her book ÜBERS MEER (Over The Sea) and WO IST WILLY (Looking for Willy).
- ISSP Gallery Riga, 1.6.-1.7.21, book exhibition, part of Riga Photomonth, showing her dummy book SOMMERSPIELE (Summer Games)
- The Paper Room Rome, 17.-25.7.21, exhibition, part of Charta Photobook Festival, displaying 25 shortlisted dummy books, including SOMMERSPIELE
- f3 Gallery Berlin, 25.-29.8.21, curated by Andreas Herzau, showing part of GRAUZONE (Grey Zone)
- Pop-Up Space Hamburg, 24.9.-19.10.21, Listen To The Photographers, curated by Wolfgang Zurborn, showing DUNKLE SONNE (Dark Sun)
15. Chechnya Square, September 3 – October 31. Free admission. Exhibition opening on September 3 at 16:00.
Since 1995, I have had a special kind of RENDEZ-VOUS once a month. First it was with myself, my belly during pregnancy, which was getting rounder and fuller. Then with my first son Merlin, and soon the second, Basil, followed. The framework of our monthly meeting is simple: a square, twelve shots and the desire to play on both sides of the lens. The monthly picture is our joint work in progress, the flipbook of these years experienced together and documents the growth and coming of age of Merlin and Basil. Since Merlin turned 18 our RENDEZ-VOUS happen at longer intervals but the longtime project nonetheless continues.
All the images from this work, taken over 25 years (1995-2020), have been collected for the first time in a book published by Arisverlag Zurich in March 2021. It is book about privacy, but always meant for a public. A book about family, life and changes.
Caroline Minjolle (born in 1964 in Tarbes, France) worked as a ballet dance in Bonn (Germany) and Bern (Switzerland) between 1981 and 1986 after she finished her education in Paris. She has been living in Zurich (Switzerland) since 1988 and working as a freelance photographer since 1992.
For more than 20 years, Caroline Minjolle has combined still and moving images on different levels in her professional career and has dealt with the body as a means of expression, as a dancer on stage, as a photographer behind and in front of the camera, as a curator and supporter of dance projects by contemporary choreographers. The representation of the human being, staged or spontaneously captured in everyday life, forms the thematic thread that connects her various fields of work in a patchwork-like manner.
Besides free projects she regularly works for newspapers, national museums, educational programs and various contemporary dance companies.
In 2020 she is one of the photographers and editors of the collective photobook "WIR/NOUS" (wir-nous.ch), published by Christoph Merian Verlag about the Swiss national women's strike of 2019. Minjolle is currently working on a large scale project with 49 other female photographers on the 50th anniversary of women's vote in Switzerland (www.50-50-50.ch) and is a member of Swiss photographers’ agency Lunax.ch in Zurich.
*Numbers are attributed to the venues.
**The program will be updated.
***The organizer reserves the right to make changes to the programme.