M. K. ČIURLIONIS NATIONAL MUSEUM OF ART
V. Putvinskio St. 55, LT-44248 Kaunas
M. K. ČIURLIONIS PAINTINGS AND PRINTS
The majority of the Lithuanian artist M. K. Čiurlionis’s (1875–1911) creative legacy is displayed here.
Čiurlionis was one of Lithuania’s first graphic artists. His graphic works include glass etchings and china ink drawings. As well as graphic design, there are original compositions and painting sketches.
His musical heritage stands as a backbone for Lithuanian professional music. There are symphony poems, compositions for piano, choirs, organ and string quartets. Čiurlionis’s creative career as a musician lasted for fifteen years, slightly longer then his career as a painter. During that period he wrote over 350 compositions. Visitors are invited to listen to M. K. Čiurlionis’s compositions in the music auditorium, where piano concerts are also organized.
The M. K. Čiurlionis National Museum of Art is the where almost all the creative heritage of this most famous Lithuanian painter, composer, author and public figure is preserved. 220 paintings, 52 graphic prints, 10 sketch books, photos and other numerous archival materials are held in the museum collection today.
LITHUANIAN FOLK ART (Is temporarily unavailable)
The museum is famous for its rich folk art collection from the 18 – 20 centuries including over 4 thousand folk sculptures. The collection presents the best examples of painting, graphics and sculpture. Saints, also fondly called “Dievukai” (Small Gods) in Lithuanian, are the dominant motif of the majority of the works. St. George, the symbol of victory and all good, is a favourite character in Lithuania. Other favourites include: St. Isidore, St. John the Baptist, St. John of Nepomuk, and St. Agatha.
16 – 19TH CENTURY LITHUANIAN ART (Is temporarily unavailable)
Paintings form the largest part of exhibition. As in the rest of Europe during the 16–18th centuries, representative “swagger” portraiture, known for its pomposity, effects and splendour began to spread in Lithuania.
Not only local masters, but also invited foreign artists participated in the art life of Lithuania. The exhibition contains works by representatives of the Vilnius Art School – Karol Rypinski, Wincenty Dmochowski and Jan Rustem. It also includes works representating the new academicism by pupils of the St. Petersburg Art Academy – Tadeusz Gorecki, Jan Chrucki, Albert Wojciech Žamett, romanticist Michael Elviro Andriolli and also a representative of Western Europe realism – Edward Mateusz Römer.
These Lithuanian painters’ works are complemented by examples of Lithuanian church Art: two wooden sculptures of exceptionally sublime beauty – the Gothic Madonnas.
EARLY 20TH CENTURY LITHUANIAN ART
(THE WORKS OF THE GROUP "ARS" AND KAUNAS ART SCHOOL) (Is temporarily unavailable)
M. K. Čiurlionis museum is the national treasure trove of Lithuanian pictorial art from the first half of the 20th century. Alongside the creations of ex-lecturers from Kaunas Art School – Justinas Vienuožinskis, Adomas Varnas, Kajetonas Sklėrius, Jonas Šileika, Petras Kalpokas, Adomas Galdikas, you can also find representatives of the groups “Ars” and “Independent”. These artists are distinctive through their individual espression and brave experimentation from the 1930’s: Antanas Samuolis, Viktoras Vizgirda, Antanas Gudaitis, Juozas Mikėnas, Leonardas Kazokas, Jonas Vaičius, Adolfas Valeška and others.
The group members championed modern and folk art, proclaimed individuality, novelty, originality, and artistic freedom. They cherished anti-naturalistic, anti-academic aesthetic attitudes. The ways these artists modelled their work stylistics were influenced by Paris school trends, Art deco and neoclassicism together with principles of local folk art.
MYKOLAS ŽILINSKAS ART GALLERY
Nepriklausomybės Sq. 12, LT-44311 Kaunas
The largest Lithuanian collection of Ancient Egyptian artefacts is kept in the museum.
In the exhibition presents colourful death-masks, sarcophagus painting, a mummy and a unique papyrus fragment from “The Book of the Dead”.
The antique collection of ceramics is impressive with its diversity in form, artistic black-figured and red-figured décor; these include moulded dishes meant for different purposes and oil–lamps from 4 B. C. to 7 A. D. from Ancient Greece and Rome.
The exhibition also includes a collection of antique Roman glass.
APLIED ART OF THE 17TH TO 20TH CENTURIES
The history of porcelain is introduced through examples of Chinese and Japanese porcelain as well as those of the best known European porcelain manufactures.
The museum is proud to have unique Meissen manufacture examples, the first in Europe, which date from the beginning of the 18th century.
The museum also presents a faience collection with examples from German, Austrian, Russian and other countries’ manufactures. Here the visitor can admire three Verdures, woven after the well known chinoiserie artist J. B. Pillement’s (1728–1808) cartoons. Examples of 19th to 20th century Expressive Art porcelain, faience, glass and furniture, in spirit of Art Nouveau and Art Déco, complete the exhibition.
EUROPEAN FINE ART OF 16TH TO 20TH CENTURIES
A wide variety of styles, periods, artists and schools, varying from the late renaissance, baroque and classicism to romanticism, symbolism, impressionism, Art Nouveau and art trends from the second half of 20th century are represented here.
The works of many famous artists from countries that were the leaders in the development of Western art, namely Italy, France, The Netherlands, Spain and Germany are represented here together with those from countries which formed their own identity through national schools, namely Austria, USA, Eastern European and the Baltic countries. Some examples of which are: “Concerto” a painting by the artist F. Rustici (school of Caravaggio); “Diogenes with a Lantern” the work of the 17th century Spanish realist J. de Ribera; “The Crucifix” the painting of the Flemish baroque master P. P. Rubens, (which is the only example of his work in the Baltic states); work by the Swiss symbolist A. Böcklin; “Lady With a Mask” by the Sezession movement leader L. Corinth; sculptures by A. Rodin and B. Thorvaldsen.
The museum also proudly houses a generous Italian and Dutch art collection from the 17th and 18th centuries. A collection of Belgian art from the first half of the 20th century was donated to the museum in 1936 by the artists participating in the Belgian exhibition in Kaunas and is exhibited here.
The exhibition is important for the sighted as well – it sensitises them to the problems of the blind and the way life is perceived by them.
Works of modern and post modern artists are presented: sculpture, graphics, painting, textiles, objects and installations. The works reflect a great variety of materials, techniques, genres and personal styles as well as each artist’s personal approach.
KAUNAS PICTURE GALLERY
K. Donelaičio St. 16, LT-44213 Kaunas
LITHUANIAN ART OF THE 1960's – 1970's
The exhibition introduces the visitors to the outstanding Lithuanian works of art by Antanas Gudaitis, Leopoldas Surgailis, Leonardas Tuleikis, Algimantas Švėgžda, Vladas Karatajus, Jonas Švažas, Aloyzas Stasiulevičius, Vincas Kisarauskas, Algimantas Kuras, Laima Drazdauskaitė and Povilas Vaitekūnas, which reflect the main artistic tendencies.
LITHUANIAN EXILE ART COLLECTION
A wide spectrum of works by Lithuanian artists who scattered throughout the world may be seen here. Most of these artists developed their own style after they had familiarized themselves with modern art trends worldwide.
Fluxus room is dedicated to the founder of the avant-garde movement, well known throughout the world and Kaunas native, George Maciunas (1931–1978) It displays works by G. Maciunas, Jonas Mekas, Joseph Beuys, Mieko (Chieko) Shiomi, Ben Vautier, George Brecht and those of other Fluxus movement participants: unique books, examples of mail-art, prints, objects and other examples.
The “Black Hole” installation by well-known Japanese artist Ay-O, is an amusing accent of the main Picture Gallery hall.
ALGIMANTAS MIŠKINIS COLLECTION
The Eastern and Lithuanian art collections, presented to the city of Kaunas by Professor Algimantas Miškinis, are displayed on the third floor of the gallery.
The basement of the gallery serves as a temporary exhibition space for Lithuanian and international art exhibitions.