A New Place to Visit in Anykščiai: The City Center Was Decorated With “Unseen Lithuania” Shots
“Anykščiai is a city of extraordinary beauty, to which it is always good to return” says photographer Marius Jovaiša, the author of the photoalbum “Unseen Lithuania”. On Friday, the shots captured by the artist – the most beautiful views of Anykščiai and its surroundings from a bird’s eye view – decorated the facade of the Anykščių vynas in the city center. An artistic gift was given to the city by the Anykščių vynas factory, which has been operating here for almost a century.
In total, the facade of Anykščių vynas was decorated with ten shots created by Marius Jovaiša, which depict not only the most beautiful views of nature surrounding Anykščiai, but also cultural objects – Šventoji River surrounded by fields and forests, Rubikiai Lake, Lajos Trail rising above the tree tops, Burbiškės manor, St. Matthew the Evangelist Church which is the highest in Lithuania and other places of interest in Anykščiai.
Representatives of Anykščių vynas created an impressive open-air gallery in just a couple of months, all the photographs exhibited in the gallery belong to Jovaiša’s photo series “Unseen Lithuania”.
According to Liubovė Rebiatnikova, production manager of Anykščių vynas, the idea to give a unique gallery for the city and its guests was inspired by the desire to decorate the city of Anykščiai and show it from an unusual, often unseen angle, as well as to encourage residents of other parts of Lithuania to visit Anykščiai.
“Located in the very center of the city, Anykščių vynas has been operating in Anykščiai for almost a hundred years – during this long period we have established a very close relationship with the townspeople, we have become a significant part of each other’s life and even a one of the city symbols. In addition, it is a land of exceptional beauty, endowed with inspiring views of nature, a unique architectural heritage. Therefore, when we encountered a global pandemic and realized that this year we will spend our summer holidays in Lithuania, we wanted to open up to original, non-traditional ideas, thus not only delighting Anykščiai locals, but also creating another place of interest for city guests. After all, the shots exhibited in the gallery reflect the unique, often truly unseen beauty of this region, nurture the spirit of Lithuanianness and patriotism” says Rebiatnikova.
Meanwhile, the author of the exhibition Jovaiša says that although open-air galleries are not a new thing in Lithuania, this one is really unique.
“This exhibition is composed in such a way as to please the eyes of Anykščiai people, so that it would be sweet for the heart to look at their homeland, perhaps even with new eyes. Although such non-traditional galleries, when my work is exhibited in open-air venues, could already be seen in Lithuania, the exhibition in Anykščiai is the first one when these works are exhibited in a particularly large format – the height of the photos in the exhibition is as high as four meters and the width is three meters” says the photographer.
Jovaiša has a special relationship with almost every photo in the exhibition. “For example, Burbiškis manor is a place of special beauty for me: it is always cozy to just be there and stay or eat in a restaurant. Its tidy surroundings are a pleasure to walk around. And Lake Rubikiai makes a big impression – huge, with winding shores. The Lajos Trail is also worth mentioning, as it has become a real challenge to take a beautiful photo – it is not very visible from the bird’s eye, so I had to put a lot effort until I caught good shots” he says.
And the city of Anykščiai itself is close and dear for Jovaiša. “I love this city very much. In my youth, my grandfather, Leonas Jovaiša, lived and taught here in the apartment of the writer Antanas Vienuolis… And anyway, there is no lack of reasons to come here again and again – to visit friends, to chat with locals. For example, Anykščiai Library has even invited me to participate in various events several times, and I am always happy to come. And if I am visiting friends, then it is necessary for us to perform a ritual – I always seem to have to peek into the cold water of the Šventoji River. Anykščiai associates with a lot of warm emotions for me – the resorts are extremely cozy here, me and my colleagues come here time to time, and I have sent my daughter to the creative camp here… Quite a lot of sentiments and memories” he says. Photographs of Anykščiai from a bird’s eye view are exhibited in the city center, on the facade of the Anykščių vynas factory from the side of Darius ir Girėnas street. It is planned that it will be possible to visit the open-air gallery indefinitely.