Faculty of Postgraduate studies

Giedrius Gulbinas

Dissertation theme "Change of Social Critique in Contemporary Art in Lithuania since 1990’s". Supervisor doc. dr. Lolita Jablonskienė

The rise of social critique in contemporary art in Lithuania is closely related to the global geopolitical events which started in late 80‘s. The collapse of the USSR, restoration of independent Lithuanian state, transition from totalitarian to democratic political system and from regulated into liberal economy has fostered dynamic social and cultural changes in Lithuanian society. At the same time some of the Lithuanian artist saw these changes not only as an opportunity to liberate and experiment with artistic expression, which was suppressed during Soviet times, but also as a necessity to reflect it. Many of contemporary Lithuanian artists who emerged in late 80‘s and early 90‘s in the beginning were trying to participate and influence cultural changes in society of that time. Later, at second half of the decade, artistic practices dealing with social aspect shifted towards position of intellectual observation and with it emerged wide range of artworks which could be related to a discourse of social criticism in contemporary art in Lithuania.

The aim of this PhD research is to investigate social, political, economical and cultural aspects which influenced emergence and popularity of social critique within artistic practice in contemporary art in Lithuania and how discourse of social critique has changed during the last 25 years: what was the main axe of social critiques in art of 90‘s and what became main subjects of interest for artists in 21st century, when new generation of artists emerged.