Three Brushstrokes – solo show by A. Zakarauskas in Beijing
On 15 September 2018, The Rooster Gallery in collaboration with Xin Dong Cheng Space for Contemporary Art will present a solo exhibition by Andrius Zakarauskas in Beijing. The exhibition will be open from September 15 to November 30.
In the exhibition “Three Brushstrokes”, one of the most prominent Lithuanian painters Andrius Zakarauskas will show his works created in the last ten years. The title of the exhibition alludes to its structure – it falls into three parts conveying different periods of Zakarauskas’s work and reflecting the many-faceted nature of his painting.
The first part of the exhibition is centred on the structure of a painting – its composition, rhythm of elements and relations of light and shade. A human figure recurrently emerging in conditional spaces becomes a part of not only the narrative, but also the composition of the painting, and itself turns into a line, a patch and a stroke. The portrayed persons often acquire features of the artist himself. The painter seems to identify himself with painting; he is both a creator, a viewer and an object of creative work. Besides a male painter, a female character sometimes appears, adding romantic and lyrical connotations to the paintings.
In the second segment of the exhibition, the artist explores the relation between the painted image and memory. The whole of visually similar motifs is reminiscent of persistent and obsessive images resurfacing from the subconscious. Thus here painting becomes a tool not only to record memories, but also to relive them and purge them. Created from thick and viscous paint mass, these fragmentary liquid shapes balance between recognisable and unrecognisable. In at first sight abstract compositions, suggestions of a face occasionally emerge, and images seem to detach themselves from the canvas and turn into independent masks of paint.
The third part of the exhibition marks the painter’s turn to narrativity. Paintings balancing on the verge of abstraction give way to a well-developed literary narrative, multi-figurative compositions, complex multi-planar spaces and diachronic action. The plots are thick with references to biblical ideas – the concept of painting as a means of attaining a higher goal, which has been distinct in Zakarauskas’s works for several years already, here acquires concrete tangible forms. Yet painting remains the backbone of the artist’s work: painting elements are included in the work’s narrative, and religious motifs are often juxtaposed with painting processes, as if referring to their sacredness.
Thus it is not by accident that brushstroke becomes the key concept in this exhibition. It is not only the main element of painterly expression, but is also emblematic of the search for a unique individual brushstroke, which, according to the artist, is a painter’s basic objective. Unfolding stroke after stroke, the painting process becomes a metaphor of creative work and symbolises the painter’s journey through his work and inwards.
The patron of the exhibition is the Lithuanian Council for Culture and the cultural attaché of Lithuania to China Agnė Biliūnaitė.