Art History & Criticism / Meno istorija ir kritika 2016, nr. 12

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  • Publication
    From populism to pop-archeology: performing popular culture on Lithuanian theatre stage
    [Tarp populizmo ir poparcheologijos: populiarioji kultūra šiuolaikinio Lietuvos teatro scenoje]
    research article
    Meno istorija ir kritika = Art history & criticism. Kaunas , Vilnius : Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas ; Versus aureus, 2016, [T.] 12, p. 5-10
    There has been a proliferation of studies on popular culture (or vacillating terms such as mass culture, culture for the masses, culture industry, media culture) that interpret/investigate the popular as cultural construction – something ‘staged’ rather than ‘natural’ or ‘given’. According to Nestor Garcia Canclini, three currents play the major role in this ‘theatricalization’ of the popular: folklore (as invented traditions), the culture industry, and political populism. Performance can play an important part in all three spheres; however, the main question is how it deals with the popular – by reconstructing and multiplying its images, narratives and identities, by appropriating or by challenging and deconstructing them. If we understand various forms of popular culture as “imaginary stagings of the social,” theatre which forms a tense, interrogative relationship with the popular can become the platform for investigation of the means by which our perception of reality is constructed and new models of identification are produced. Furthermore, there are quite a number of examples in contemporary Lithuanian theatre where combining and contrasting the elements of popular culture / dramatic discourse / personal narratives produce a multiple network of representations that accurately reveal the hidden power struggles of contemporary society as well as various mechanisms of manipulation. On the other hand, contemporary theatre can very easily become part of the popular culture by choosing to mirror its language and to comply with the rules of popularity. In this paper, the author examines the ways in which the popular culture has been represented (re-contextualization, ironic interpretation, critical deconstruction, or mimetic mirroring) on the stage of post-Soviet Lithuanian theatre, at the same time addressing the larger issues about the political and social implications of these particular stagings of the popular.
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  • Publication
    Rivers as a part of the modernization process in Kaunas (Lithuania) between WWI and WWII
    [Upės kaip modernizacijos proceso dalis tarpukario Kaune]
    research article
    Meno istorija ir kritika = Art history & criticism. Kaunas , Vilnius : Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas ; Versus aureus, 2016, [T.] 12, p. 11-19
    Recreation, leisure and entertainment have become important elements of the European urban culture long time ago. Places where nature and urban environment meet together have always been identified as comfortable. Thus, it is not surprising that the city parks, or even more, the beaches become a desirable part of the city’s image. Kaunas city is not an exception, here the initiatives of the revitalization of the riverbanks have become a recent center of attention of urban activists as well as architecture historians. Interest in the history of Kaunas riverside relates to the fact that the areas of the modern leisure in Lithuania have a long tradition, as its starting point can be associated with the interwar period (1918-1940). The article provides a brief summary of the study of “the resort network” being built near the river throughout the Kaunas region during the WWI and WWII as well as of its leisure culture that was flourishing and the related architectural marks and shapes of urbanization: newly built summer houses adapted to provide treatment (rehabilitation) and a place for living, villas, Kurhaus, restaurants, sanatoria, health resorts, commercial places, and public infrastructure.
      205  87
  • Publication
    Conflicts of the heritage: mapping values of immovable cultural heritage in Kaunas downtown area
    [Paveldo konfliktai: nekilnojamojo kultūros paveldo verčių identifikavimas Kauno naujamiestyje]
    research article
    Petrulis, Vaidas
    Meno istorija ir kritika, 2016, nr. 12, p. 20-30
    The article focuses on the process of defining the value of the immovable heritage of Kaunas downtown (Naujamiestis) area. This urban landscape is protected by the national law of Lithuania. However, the official value of the site also includes 45 buildings marked with European heritage label (EHL). Besides, there are aspirations to inscript modern architecture of Kaunas on the UNESCO World heritage list. The main objective of the article is to discuss how these official layers of values correspond with expectations of the heritage community. Academic and doctrinal texts on cultural heritage widely acknowledged the importance of the community in the process of value definition. This aspect is especially important when speaking about the heritage of the 20th century. Majority of these buildings that were announced as a cultural heritage directly affect daily activities of the heritage community. After comparing some instruments official institutions and heritage community use for the value definition, it can be declared that in such complex territories as Kaunas downtown, all actions on the value definition have to be based on research. One of the tasks of such research should be a comprehensive map of values combining expectations of official institutions and the heritage community. The article was prepared within the framework of project “Heritage as a conflict: the shift between modernist and after-modernist concepts of heritage in Lithuania” financed by the program of the Researcher teams’ projects of Research Council of Lithuania (Agreement no. MIP-028/2015).
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  • Publication
    Facets of proto modern photography: history of avant-garde in Russia, Europe and Central Asia
    [Proto modernios fotografijos aspektai: avangardo istorija Rusijoje, Europoje ir Centrinėje Azijoje]
    research article
    Yates, Steve
    Meno istorija ir kritika, 2016, nr. 12, p. 31-55
    The wide array of artistic and technological innovations in early modern photography at the beginning of the twentieth century combined historical mediums and approaches with new media and technologies in the mainstream of modern art. A diverse generation of multidisciplinary artists began to combine photographic practices with other art disciplines and skills, setting the stage to the new century for contemporary art practices around the world at the end of the past century. As the dawn of the modern era emerged across the United States, Europe and Asia in the early twentieth century, the Russian and European Avant-garde established a broad range of individual forms and styles. The first decades witnessed innovations by artists, photographers, filmmakers, painters, architects, musicians, writers, and poets seeking new directions. Modernists moved beyond tradition in expressing increasing changes found throughout everyday life. Artists combined photography, its scientific process and craft with emerging technologies and media to create modern subjects, approaches, and styles with unprecedented vision. While the early modern history of photography globally remains to be written, a wide range of artists established a much broader scope of contributions to Russia than Western or Eastern counterparts. From Moscow to Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the Russian Avant-garde created prototypes of modern photography in multiple forms and through a variety of means that spread internationally. Over the lifetimes of artists and their oeuvres, modern styles and approaches were invented with independent vision. Photographers worked with a wide variety of materials and means of media printed on paper photomechanically using ink and related cinematic as well as other emerging technologies. Photographs were made, remade and reprinted, used and reused, with an array of diverse and meaningful perspectives. Proto modern photographers broke from conventional models and traditional genre by creating their own subjects with those experienced in the everyday world. The history of proto modern photography in Russia resides more in enduring ideas than the initial prints crafted in conventional darkroom practices. The darkroom often became a means to other ends. Artists worked beyond the limitations of the medium into experimental paths. Innovations from the studio and printing press with ink on paper moved from the historical limitations of photography as a medium to repetitive processes intrinsic to the medium. The twenty-first century offers unlimited opportunities for study in the modern art history of photography. Research not only lays a critical foundation for better understanding the contributions in the former USSR but the global evolution of modern and postmodern art. The true and extraordinary complexities in the early history modern photography formed by the Avant-garde through a wide array of styles and methods help inform transdisciplinary approaches today offering knowledge and understanding in a new world of seemingly unlimited artistic potentials.
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