ABSTRACTIONS: The Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centre Collection at Siauliai Art Gallery (Lithuania)

From September 11 till  October 2 the Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centres collection exhibition “ABSTRACTIONS” is on display at Siauliai Art Gallery (Lithuania).

Abstraction is a logical thought process that shifts the mind away from the random and trivial features associated with an object or phenomenon to highlight and capture the universal essentials. It is a general perspective achieved through theorising.

Abstraction has a long socio-political history. At the turn of last century, it was synonymous with a shining vision about a new world order. Russian Constructivism became the emblem of the Communist revolution and a utopian society. European Expressionism tried to dismantle the bourgeois form of social relations and unsettle the capitalist order. Futurism celebrated the industrial revolution in ways that were both benign and not: its aesthetic of beauty found in mechanical machinery was also associated with fascism, war and ethnic cleansing. By the mid-20th century, the abstraction of revolutionary politics had largely faded into insignificance amidst post-war capitalism and Cold War policies.

Abstraction in art is, for the most part, associated with assorted abstractionist movements from the early 20th century, which rejected formalism and narrative. The collection of Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centre also developed with a socio-politically abstract vector, turning away from specific movements and trying to capture the universal essentials of contemporary art. Much like abstract painting as such, this exhibition highlights the meaning and substance of line, colour and hue.

Featured artists: Erdmute Blach (Germany), Uldis Čamans (Latvia), Sven Drobnitza (Sweden), Beatrice Gelmetti (Italy), Elga Grīnvalde (Latvia), Harald Jegodzienski (Latvia /Germany), Michail Lalov (Bulgaria), Erin Lawlor (UK), Franciszek Ledóchowski (Poland), Siliang Ma (China), Anita Meldere (Latvia), Jon Arne Mogstad (Norway), Kuzana Ogg (USA), Manuel Schroeder (Germany), Sandra Strēle (Latvia), Jan Valik (Slovakia), Sigurds Vīdzirkste (Latvia/USA), Žanna Vērdiņa (Latvia), Natalya Zaloznaya (Belarus/Belgium).

The collection of Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centre has been developing from since the idea of the centre was first proposed. It is replenished every year with procurements, creative outputs of symposium participants and valued donations from artists and other partners, reaffirming existing and prospective cooperation commitments in different art projects. Currently, the collection is comprised of more than 2,000 artworks in various media. The Rothko Centre aspires not only to preserve this valuable assemblage, but also to exhibit it regularly, both on its own premises and in other art and culture spaces in Latvia and beyond.

Siauliai Art Gallery, Vilnius St. 245, LT-76343, Siauliai, Lithuania

Šiaulių dailės galerija (siauliugalerija.lt)

Image: Erdmute Blach. UNTITLED IV (2016). Acrylic on canvas. 100 x 120 cm