Renata Bartusevičūtė
www.kamane.lt, 2011-11-09

In brief: The exhibition “Weekdays of Vilnius and Kaunas” by the National Prize Winner, photographer Romualdas Rakauskas was presented at Kaunas Photography Gallery on the 8th of November. The narrative of the show consists of two series of reportage photographs – “Vilnius Weekdays” (1960-65) and “Our Kaunas” (1967-76).

According to art critic Daniela Mrazkova, Rakauskas is the artist who speaks about the main values brightly, joyfully, emotionally, without any unnecessary pathos. R. Rakauskas entered the Lithuanian history of photography with his famous cycles “Blossom” and “Tenderness” that reveal eternally romantic, extremely sensitive, poetic gaze at the reality surrounding us.

“Weekdays of Vilnius and Kaunas” presents R. Rakauskas slightly differently. The author did not try to document the architecture of the cities. He aimed to go deep into life, to observe the human being and environment, to find a sensitive relationship with the photographed object. The search for beauty and ideals of world can be noticed in these works. “Interestingly, photographers of the Soviet period used to force the beauty intentionally and I could see the beauty in all systems – socialist or capitalist”, - R. Rakauskas says.

In art critic Agnė Narušytė‘s words, the story in these cycles is constructed not by affirmations or literary tropes but by the observation of the urban changes, approaching to the space of wordless understanding, where texts are being written by rhythms of figure movements and shadows. R. Rakauskas catches precisely the “fatal” coincidences that become significant only in photography, accentuating the structures of reality.

Finally the author speaks about the meaning of photography and finds it in documentary reportage. „Photography was born out of the necessity to reflect the reality as it was. However, when photography wills to approach art, the search and staging begin. I exhibited my cycle “The Lee” that was my protest against myself – the staging, the editing myself. The people seen in “The Lee” did not know they were being photographed. Such way of making photographs was the greatest happiness for me. Staging is a dull thing, you want more real experiences all the time“, - R. Rakauskas stated.

The exhibition will take place at Kaunas Photography Gallery till the end of November. 

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