Writer Vidas Morkūnas: “I do not accept art that tries to hide decay” 0

Interlocutor Jurga Tumasonytė
www.kamane.lt, 2013-12-05
Writer and translator Vidas Morkūnas. Photo from personal archive

In brief: The author heard about the writer Vidas Morkūnas from the story of another writer about one Lithuanian prose writer who left for Greenland to write. Another acquaintance was short stories of V. Morkūnas written in the rich and original style. The third time is this interview in which the author tries to get acquainted with the interesting artist who is not seen in the public frequently.

V.Morkūnas looks like some Patrick Süskind to the interlocutor: the writer has written two books of short stories, received a number of awards, translates from English, German, Polish, Russian but does not show in the public frequently. V.Morkūnas states that he is an introvert and this should explain his status of being a “secret” writer. According to him, public relations and advertisement is necessary for publishing houses; meanwhile, a good writer needs a pen, some paper and, most importantly, style.

At the moment V.Morkūnas states to have a huge number of ideas and works. “The manuscript of my poetry has been lying in drawers of V. Sventickas too long. I should try publishing it next year. Also, I hope to prepare a book of prose in the coming year too – it will be a selection of short stories. Of course, I translate books also. I almost specialise in translations of debut books of female writers. I have ideas for two or three novels, but I do not intend to start writing them yet. I will postpone them for the unknown future, but it is not the right time for them now,” the writer reveals his plans.

Speaking about the genre of short stories, the writer states that for him texts of rather small volume enable him to create a separate, autonomic world. He enjoys discipline that should be followed in a short story – you have to know when to start and when to end.

The writer is asked about the aesthetics of ugliness which the author of the article notices in V.Morkūnas’ short stories. The writer does not agree with this statement – according to him, the beauty of ugliness is close to him, but he tries to picture things that rot and decay in a beautiful manner. “I do not understand and accept art which tries to hide decay, cruelty, death so that the reader/viewer would not get scared and his/her mood would not be spoiled. In my opinion, art should make the man see everything – beautiful and ugly things, sad, tragic sides of life as they do exist, and there is no beauty without ugliness,” V.Morkūnas asserts.

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