GARDENS, a 17-foot-by-17-foot sculpture re-creating the compositions of the folk artists of Lithuania using aluminum rods lit with color-changing LED lights and rotating slowly to produce a kaleidoscope effect, is on display November 27-28 in the Winter Garden on the 9th floor of Harold Washington Library Center.
The GARDENS pop-up exhibit commemorates the centennial of modern Lithuanian statehood. To meaningfully bridge two dates separated by a hundred years, Lithuanian-American artist Ray Bartkus has re-imagined a form of Lithuanian folk art called sodai, which can be translated as “gardens.”
Bartkus' sodai is brought into contemporary existence with modern materials and technology. This re-imagining affirms the timeless nature of traditional Lithuanian art and demonstrates its resilience, even in a contemporary setting, similar to the resilience of Lithuanian statehood.