Liliana Zeic at Kaunas Artists’ House, Lithuania

In the beginning was the deed!
17 March – 1 May, 2023

Opening hours of the exhibition: from Wednesday to Friday 11 am – 6 pm.

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‘In the beginning was the deed!’ were words from Johann Wolfgang Goethe’s „Faust”. The scientist utters these words before making a deal with Mephistopheles, prioritising action over thought and word in changing the world order. These words were used as a slogan by the anarchist group Black Banner active in Białystok, Dnipro and Odessa in 1906, the slogan unambiguously expressing the use of aggressive physical force against the then tsarist government and increasingly powerful industrialists and bankers. The history of this and various other anti-imperialist groups that operated in the territory that is delineated by current borders of Lithuania, Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova and Russia, was brought to life in 2020 by the exhibition „Na początku był czyn!” held in Białystok’s gallery Arsenal. Curators of this exhibition not only opened these archives, but also together with artists (and) activists reflected the context of today’s social, political and contemporary art transformations.

The exhibition „In the beginning was the deed!” organised at the Kaunas Artists’ House continues the narrative started in Bialystok with the history of anarchist movements in Lithuania. By opening the archives, this story turns the exhibition into a conversation about the ways of writing and reading radical collective and personal narratives, about the (im)possibility of resistance to dominant powers and their forms of representation, about the unevenness of the margins of everyday life.

Exhibition participants: Anastasia Sosunova, Agnė Jokšė, Anton Karyuk, Naglis Kristijonas Zakaras, Goda Palekaitė ir Adomas Palekas, Iza Tarasewicz, Liliana Zeic, the unknown author of Grodno archive.

𝗗𝗶𝘀𝗰𝘂𝗿𝘀𝗶𝘃𝗲 𝗽𝗿𝗼𝗴𝗿𝗮𝗺𝗺𝗲 𝗼𝗳 𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗻𝘁𝘀:
12 April, 6 pm, at the Social Centre Emma, the researchers Darius Pocevičius, Viktorija Kolbešnikova and Tomas Marcinkevičius will talk about their experiences of writing resistance stories. The conversation will be moderated by Agnė Bagdžiūnaitė.
13 April, 6.30 pm, at Kaunas Artists’ House, a guided tour of the exhibition with curator Vaida Stepanovaitė. After the tour, at 8 pm, a celebratory dinner will be held at Social Centre Emma.
1 May, 4 pm, on the occasion of the closing of the exhibition at Kaunas Artists’ House, presentation of curator Auksė Petrulienė on the theme of the Museum of Labour and a zine workshop led by educator Asta Volunge.
More information about the events program can be found at www.kmn.lt

Exhibition curators: Edgaras Gerasimovičius, Vaida Stepanovaitė
Research and public program curator: Agnė Bagdžiūnaitė
Bialystok’s exhibition „Na początku był czyn!” curators: Matthew Post and Katarzyna Różniak-Szabelska
Design: Vytautas Volbekas
Organised by: Kaunas Artists’ House, Swallow (Vilnius), gallery Arsenal (Bialystok)

Project is funded by the Lithuanian Council for Culture

more information: kmn.lt