sekretas (Lithuanian for secret) is an exhibition by Marija Olšauskaitė that peers into her long-
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sekretas assembles suspended surfaces to look through, resting vessels to hold, vividly colored benches to carry, a vitreous pond, hand-
sekretas borrows its name from an urban leisure activity practiced by youngsters in Lithuania and many other countries that were part of the former Soviet Union. Zestfully, children would enter a courtyard and place small objects under a pane or a found shard of glass: flower petals, golden bottle caps, shells, beautiful rubbish, and other idiosyncratic elements to be organized and composed into material expressions of friendship. The glass would then be covered with soil or dust, as a sekretas recedes from view. A fortunate passer-
sekretas looks into that joint where sculpture, composition, and the making of social bonds revel in each other’s presence. Here, glass takes on a distinct role. It frames and shelters composition and friendship, both concretely and symbolically, while simultaneously prefiguring their fragility and potential shattering.
sekretas presents works that are imbued with a whimsical and slippery attitude toward the fixity of sculpture. They quiver between traditions of craft and ornament, the social role of sculpture, and the ways in which objects populate daily lives and customs. At the same time, Olšauskaitė’s pieces also harbor the idiosyncrasies of cryptic abstraction and enigmatic composition. Throughout her work resounds the tradition of stained-
sekretas is punctuated by the appearance and vanishing of works by fellow artists, friends, and guests. Unannounced, their liminal presence will manifest itself throughout the exhibition.
sekretas will also be accompanied by secrets, a publication that gathers words, plants, and glass contributed by Elena Narbutaitė, Marija Olšauskaitė, Maria Tsoy, Aleksandra Krivulina, and Tom Engels, designed by Julie Peeters.
sekretas is curated by Tom Engels.
sekretas is realized with the support of the Embassy of Lithuania in Austria and the Honorary Consulate of Lithuania in Graz.
Marija Olšauskaitė, sekretas, 2023. Photo: Marija Olšauskaitė. Courtesy of the artist.
Exhibition 25 March -
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