Vilnius gallery Meno Niša continues a long-standing tradition and from June 3 invites everyone to Marius Jonutis’ exhibition Village Fairy Tale – a series of rural paintings telling nonfictional stories of the artist’s life in the countryside.
The friendship between Marius Jonutis and gallery Meno Niša, which has been operating for 19 years, has lasted for eighteen of them. That is how long the artist has been organizing his traditional exhibition that brings summer warmth to the gallery every year.
“Marius Jonutis’ works are characterized by bright colors, decorative form, recognizable character types, repetition of themes, and means of expression, all of which create the artist’s exceptional touch. And looking at his works, one can read history year after year; common human and relevant themes create the narrative of Jonutis’ work, regardless of material or technique,” said the gallery manager Diana Stomienė.
Marius Jonutis graduated from Vilnius Academy of Arts, majoring in graphics, organized over 50 exhibitions together with artist N. Marčėnaitė and over 60 personal exhibitions in Lithuania and abroad. The artist mainly creates sculptures, painted wooden reliefs, paintings, and graphics, and illustrates books. During the 30-year creative period, M. Jonutis has created over 1,000 works of art, most of which have found their viewer and new homes. Due to the relevance of themes and the simplicity of expression, the artist’s work is interesting to a very wide range of art lovers and collectors, and his works have been acquired by a large circle of Lithuanian and foreign collectors.
Traditionally, fans of Marius Jonutis’ works are also awaiting the artist’s thoughts on the future exhibition:
“I’ve long emigrated from the city to the countryside, and I’ve been enjoying being a villager for most of my life now. I don’t invent anything, I draw things which I see, which matter, that which is beautiful, which I love. I don’t want to contaminate the brush with ugly things. I don’t care about epidemics – watching what birds do is far more important than the bustle of politicians. I live on earth under the sky with birds and animals, storms, rains, suns, mists, dew, and rainbows, I am happy here and I know that I am not the only one. It is precisely for all the villagers at heart that I paint.
Last spring, I wrote an application for a scholarship from the Lithuanian Council for Culture, and without looking for topics in foreign territories, I wrote “Village Fairy Tale”, because that’s what it is. I received the scholarship and somehow got stuck in it all, and it turned out that the themes and topics are endless here. In the fall, I applied for the scholarship for another three months to expand on the same subject and received it again. And when those months were over, I saw no reason to stop. This is how a long series of rural paintings with short texts next to them appeared – because playing with words is just as fun as playing with colors and topics. Publishing house Žalias Kalnas is currently preparing a book with those texts and pictures, and we expect it to be published as early as this summer. Some of the paintings for this exhibition are gone because I needed boards for the house I am building – this type of work is also fun and interesting for me, I just can’t bring it to the gallery.
I am grateful to the gallery Meno Niša for allowing me to show my work to people for eighteen years in a row, that is important to me.”
Marius Jonutis’ exhibition Village Fairy Tale in the gallery Meno Niša will take place from June 3 to 30. Gallery opening hours are from Tuesdays to Fridays, 12–6 p.m., and on Saturdays, 12–4 p.m.
The sponsor of the gallery is Vilnius City Municipality.