Versmė / Stream (zoom detail)

ONE YEAR

Ceramics art exhibition by Rima Leipuvienė

The series of sculptural ceramic works “One Year” is the ceramic works I created for the second personal exhibition. My own experience gained in 2019-2020, when I lived in Riga, the capital of Latvia, for more than one year (years full of challenges) became an inspiration.

Separation from the homeland and from social ties during the quarantine period further strengthened the already solitary creative life. When I was immersed in my daily life without the hustle and bustle of the world, in the seriousness of the inner depths, and in the generous nature of Latvia, I was thinking about this exceptional period of life as well as about the rich inner life of a woman hidden in the whirlpools of everyday life...

 NEWS

Here you can find latest information about exhibition events.

June 5-20, 2021

DARBO LAIKAS

Pirmadienis – nedarbo diena

Antradienis 11.00 – 18.00 val.

Trečiadienis 11.00 – 19.00 val. 

Ketvirtadienis 11.00 – 18.00 val.

Penktadienis 11.00 – 18.00 val.

Šeštadienis 11.00 – 17.00 val.

Sekmadienis – nedarbo diena

Galerija neveikia valstybinių švenčių dienomis. Dieną prieš valstybinę šventę darbo laikas 1 val. trumpesnis.

January 5, 2018

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January 5, 2018

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EXHIBITION SHOWCASE IN PANEVĖŽYS CIVIC ART GALLERY, CERAMIC ART PAVILION

Plakatas Final.jpg

 EXHIBITION VIEW

PRESENTATION OF EXHIBITION CATALOGUE

The catalogue “One Year” consists of comprehensive texts and photos of ceramic pieces  from the series “One Year” . 

WELCOME TO THE VIRTUAL TOUR 

Please click on the active “Play” button for a virtual tour throughout  the exhibition “One Year”. 

EXHIBITION SHOWCASE IN DUSETAI ART GALLERY

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Exhibition at Dusetų Art Gallery

EXHIBITION CONCEPT AND REVIEW

Series of ceramic works  “One Year"

About new series of ceramics works, inspirations you can find out more reading below

  • Author's Words

Welcome to read an elaborate explanation of author’s creative strategy

  • Creation Review by Lijana Šatavičiūtė-Natalevičienė, Art Critic.

Pastanga / Endeavour zoom detail
Pastanga / Endeavour zoom detail

AUTHOR'S WORDS

Length of time depends upon our ideas. 

Size of space hangs upon our sentiments. 

For one whose mind is free from care,

A day will outlast the millennium. 

For one whose heart is large, 

A tiny room is as the space between heaven and earth. 1

The series of sculptural ceramic works “One Year” is the ceramic works I created for the second personal exhibition. My own experience gained in 2019-2020, when I lived in Riga, the capital of Latvia, for more than one year (years full of challenges) became an inspiration.

Separation from the homeland and from social ties during the quarantine period further strengthened the already solitary creative life. When I was immersed in my daily life without the hustle and bustle of the world, in the seriousness of the inner depths, and in the generous nature of Latvia, I was thinking about this exceptional period of life as well as about the rich inner life of a woman hidden in the whirlpools of everyday life.

As described in the ancient Chinese philosophical verses above, the perception of time and space depends personally on our approach. For me, with an open heart welcoming the changes in life, the time spent abroad was as if expanded, filled, and today it seems to have been twice as long. The experience lived in reality now remains a meaningful combination of place, time, and impressions and space, existing in my consciousness, in my memories, and in the non-existence of my being... 

When creating works for the new series of the exhibition, I look deep into myself. I analyse my experiences, feelings in relation to time, constant change, changes in the environment, people close to me, and aspirations and dreams. I touch on the topics of fragility of existence, temporality, new beginning, and fulfilment. I am particularly concerned about the impact of the flow of time on human existence and the existential analysis of this phenomenon. When telling my story, in ceramics I think of aforementioned stage of life and as an inner space full of inexhaustible creative potential. 

When creating, I am guided by intuition, spontaneity, I give priority and importance to the material itself (chamotte), and I take into account the aesthetic principles of the Eastern ceramic traditions (emptiness, harmony, balance violation, naturalness closely related to simplicity, etc.). For example, naturalness, with its many meanings, is also important to me in the aforementioned aspect of spontaneity, as it is interpreted in the Chinese aesthetics: “Self-contained spontaneity is the unity of the spiritual flight of the Creator and the natural forces of nature (such as the Haiku of Joy)”2. Such mysteriously born forms and creations provide a great deal of satisfaction. I value the appropriate naturalness (as an expression of value) in the works when the ceramic piece appears little or as if untouched by the human hand, or the author's touches seem free and natural. It is important to me that the ceramic work looks “not tortured” or that it does not look too polished or cleared.

When analysing the processes of my intuitive creation, I realized that the philosophy of art presented by Henry Bergson, his developed theory of intuitivism, the concept of elan vital (“vital force“), and ideas of aesthetics are also very close to me.

The visual expressions of the ceramic works are dominated by a strong natural accent. Organic and abstract ceramic works uniquely and indirectly reflect natural formations and objects (sea waves, rock, tree trunk bark, etc.). The influence of nature is strong. This time it is the impressions of the Latvian seaside and its forest landscape that do not leave me indifferent. Today, the fact that nature inspires creation no longer sounds like a banal fact to me. Now it is a sincere and deep feeling for me, which leads towards the unity with nature. 

In ceramics, I am also inspired by the primordial state of the clay material, which I want to reveal in different ways, such as leaving traces of clay motion extracted during the transformation, textures, irregularities, and so on. Thus, in my ceramic works I reveal a lot of materiality and textures. My great attention to ceramic surface textures is related to one of the principles of Japanese aesthetics – attention to detail, the ability to contemplate at the detail, and through it to see the meaning of the whole. I am happy when an interesting ceramic surface “attracts the eye” because it is interesting to look at it for a long time and to explore it (for example, the work “Flow”). I use simple objects to form clay – what is available in the workshop by hand, such as pine firewood... 

 

When creating, I remain true to my values. In the works I try to convey movement, vitality, asymmetry, and I demonstrate the original natural beauty of the selected materials. Sometimes that movement is barely perceptible, implied and given to the ceramic works with sufficient subtlety – violating the usual inherent stability of form and discovering a new variant of balance. In this way, I try to give the work a feeling of “floating” in space. I am very happy if massive work can suddenly gain lightness and seem to soar in the space.

All glazes used for the works are original, non-commercial, and made of various natural components: low-fire clays, rocks, and wood ash. Additionally, I use some pigments. All the works were fired at a high temperature (1300 °C). In some of the works I combined chamotte clay with sand – the sand of the Latvian coast. I do not use the coiling technique. It is more interesting for me to work with a solid lump of clay, slab, and transform them in various ways.

My creation is based on a spontaneous flow of creative flight, in which there is a movement in two directions: I surf through emotional experiences, the ideas that arise from it, and I try to express them in forms. Sometimes the action goes the opposite way. When I listen to the material, the forms that want to tell me something are born as if by themselves... A new, original, and unseen expression of form is more important to me than the meticulous completeness of the work and the decoration of the details (for example, the work “Longing”). The works develop on the “chain principle”: when one idea is implemented, another emerges from it. In this creative process, guided by intuition, I travel through philosophical reflections and knowledge of myself and the world. Therefore, I say that creation is every time a new self-discovery and extension.

 

Thus, at some point the opening day comes. Then the creative works are presented to the outside i.e. reaches the viewer. Here an interesting destiny awaits them – to resonate a response in the hearts of others or to remain reflections of my own consciousness.

 

Rima Leipuvienė, Ceramics Artist

 

  1. Günter Nitschke, translation from Japanese. Saikontan (Vegetable Roots Talks), Yuhodo, Tokyo, 192. Saikontan is Japanese translation of Chinese Ceigentan created by late-Ming China author Hung Ying-ming (Hung Tzu-ch’eng). The original writing of 357 verses of ancient wisdom did not survive in China. Gained more popularly in Japan from 19th century this book under the name Saikontan was reprinted in several original translations.

  2. Prof. Dr hab. Antanas Andrijauskas, Traditional Asian Aesthetics and Art Theory, Vilnius: LKTI, 2017, p. 60.

Law of Nature zoom detail
Law of Nature zoom detail

CREATION REVIEW BY ART CRITIC

RimaLeiepuvienė. Exhibition “One Year” (2020-2021)

CREATIVITY IS LIKE AN INNER OPENING

 

How to measure time by works of art? How do the forms embody the emotional experiences and the depths of the whirlpool of being, the growing dreams, the sense of destiny, the longing for the homeland, the fairy tale before bed, and everything else that fits in a specific period of one year? Rima Leipuvienė, who is a ceramicist by vocation, does this succesfully. For her second solo exhibition “One Year”, she created a cycle about the inner experiences she had in Latvia during her little more than a year. In a foreign country, immersed in everyday worries, cut off from normal social connections and the environment, and even with the onset of the global pandemic, she felt an endless desire to unleash creative energy and to give meaning to her changed being in ceramics. 

Nowadays, viewers often expect an intriguing narrative and the narratives typical of postmodernism that become more important than the integrity of expression or the disclosure of the material features of a work. Rima Leipuvienė's ceramics tell the story of a young woman. She talks about the slowed down flow of life, listening to the new environment and her senses, daily routine, reflections on life, love, and sacrifice. While living in Latvia, Rima played a number of roles. First of all, she was a caregiver and supporter of loved ones. Also, she was an observer of the environment, a contemplator, and an artist who poured out the accumulated thoughts and emotions. In Latvia, she had the opportunity to experiment with porcelain.

Rima Leipuvienė's path to art is uncommon in Lithuania. She entered this field outside of academia but driven by an inner need to create. After receiving the basics of ceramics in Gvidas Raudonius' studio, later she attended ceramics seminars and symposia, especially related to wood firing techniques, in order to get to know the specifics of the craft and broaden her horizons. That’s how she found out what an anagama is. She had to discover value landmarks independently – by visiting local and international exhibitions, delving into educational videos, reading books, and studying the work of her favorite ceramists. Interested in East Asian ceramics art, Rima sought to understand the secrets of ceramics in those lands. She was inspired by the work of the British Orientalist Phil Rogers (1951-2020) and the Japaneses Shozo Michikawa (born on 1953) and Yo Akiyama (born on 1953). The ceramics artist‘s community kindly accepted Rima into its ranks, appreciating her professionalism, goal pursuit, and inner energy encoded in the works. Since 2019, Rima Leipuvienė is a member of the Lithuanian Artists' Union. The artist organized several solo exhibitions. In 2018-2019, the personal exhibition “From Non-Existence” traveled to various Lithuanian cities and in 2019 it was presented at Daugavpils Clay Art Center in Latvia. Her works, which have passed strict selection competitions, are exhibited in important Lithuanian and international ceramics exhibitions.

 

CREATIVE STRATEGY AND PECULIARITY OF THINKING

The artist explains her personal creative aspirations on the basis of the truths of Zen Buddhism and intuitive philosophy, which she did not discover immediately. Capacious words, which are chosen as creative motto, of the Chinese thinker Hong Zicheng (1572-1620) laid out in the work “Vegetable Root Discourse” (Caigentan) speak about the subtle things of being, such as the subjectivity of the flow of time and the size of the space, and the greatness of the smallness and the breadth of the heart. An art lover who does not delve into the artist's thoughts or does not know her biography just feels a living creative nerve, the pulsation of thought, the vibrations of the soul, and a real and lived feeling. We would describe Rima’s artistic position as modernist, when creativity becomes an expression of a spontaneous inner outpouring and a subjective view of reality. Hence, the peculiar aesthetics, poetic metaphor, sense of harmony, and meditativeness arise from here. Art researchers studying art processes draw attention to the resurgence of modernist thinking in postmodern society. They allude to the current “overload” of modernism in the Lithuanian art field, which changes the postmodern skepticism with a positive, constructive and calm attitude and the search for the purity of forms 1.

The series “One Year” (2020-2021) demonstrates that the artist is not standing still and new shifts are emerging in her creative work, which are obvious when comparing the latest works with the previously created ones. A few years ago, in the series of sculptural ceramics “From Non-Existence” (2018-2019), she sought the associativity of form, arising from the specifics of the material, the way it was performed, and the technology. She applied her favourite technique of Japanese artist Shozo Michikawa: twisting a piece of solid clay during throwing and splitting it into diagonal and horizontal incisions, which creates an asymmetrical and slightly oblique shape and the visibility of a spiral motion. Even then, the author's undisguised fascination with the aesthetics of the East, which spread from the aestheticization of irregular forms, meditation, naturalness, and random effects inspired by nature, was revealed. The plastic of rough surfaces was characterized by harsh grandeur and had similarities with natural formations – tilted stumps, cracked earth, or rock surfaces. Glazes made of wood ash and clay fused during high combustion, spreading in an uneven layer on the surface, creating the impression of ash deposits or sintered magma. The series “From Non-Existence“ was dominated by variations of works created with the same technique, interacting with each other and creating the impression of human communion with nature. It is true that even then there were already works that could be considered prophets of recent searches. These are abstract and freely formed compositions with signs of spontaneous expression and improvisation. 

Such works predominate in the series “One Year”, which consists of two parts (“Time” and “Emotional Experiences”). The author describes her strategy as a “dialogue with clay”, when a solid lump of clay is freely processed, transformed, converted into an abstract, and close-to-nature derivative which is characterized by naturalness, seriousness, and depth of the subtext. Although the forms are frugal and restrained, they are meaningful. In this respect, the author is faithful to the creative principle formed a few years ago – to rely on the eloquence of the material and the possibilities of clay expression. You can also see the differences. Each work in the series “From Non-Existence” seemed to have grown from another, there were more external similarities between the works, and the artist sought to make the audience feel as if surrounded by nature. Meanwhile, each composition of “One Year” requires individual perception. The literary subtext expressed in poetic names reinforces the allure of suggestion: “The Swirls of Existence”, “Sharing the World”, “Waves of Peace”, “Counting Time”, and “Direction”. The fragile mood and silent hint are exerted by a slight inclination of the vertical shapes, asymmetry, and random effects, which are accentuated by pigments and authorial glazes of wood ash, which, as if erupted lava, unevenly floods the surface of the article, penetrate into irregularities and cavities, accentuating some places and creating the impression of charring in others. The search for eloquent minimalism continues, when even a faint hint (match-shaped embossing on a flat surface, plane indentations, cracks, glaze drips, or vertical-finishing joints) permeates interpretations dictated by the viewer’s experience. This is how the passing days are counted, such memories are left after one year, one day burns like a match, and time fragments are inscribed in the subconscious with such images. 

The works of “Time” group look a bit more constructive, static, very aesthetic, and most of them grown from a tilted rectangle. Then you feel the fragility, temporality, and hopeful new beginning of being, which are declared by the author. Sometimes you can hear the echo of an almost global historical existence (“Experience”). The part of “Emotional experiences” is already more dynamic, and the static compositions of this series are complemented by works that emit open waves of emotions  (“Stream” and “Haiku of Joy”). Sometimes the forms climb on top of each other, tear in half, and the compositions gain vigor and vitality. Cracks and grooves furrowing the surface become more restless and deeper (“Law of Nature”). In the soaring space, the impression is created by diagonal tilting, ignoring statics, composing shapes as if without a stable base (“Endeavour” and “Downwind”). Abstract forms and improvisational beginnings prevail. The artist has always been fascinated by the sense of form and the ability to reveal the vital energy of clay. There are recognizable motifs (a heart formed from the bark of a tree), but they do not seem primitive. They excite with their imperfection because they are grown out of nature and a real sense. We will not find a strict silhouette or regular lines in any spatial two-sided composition.

ASYMMETRY, NATURALITY, AND SIMPLICITY

Rima Leipuvienė's works are unsophisticated, ascetic, sometimes spontaneous, and arising from the flow of inner feelings and thoughts. Their restrained shapes, unexpected textured tonal accents, glowing with the greyness of the ashes, the glaze of untouched clay red, or the luster of the cold fused metal can evoke many hints. The works indirectly interpret natural objects inspired by the Latvian seaside and forest landscapes. In the works you can see the ridge of the sea wave, the cracked rock, the stone, and the bark of the tree trunk. It is such an unobtrusive and barely noticeable intervention of the author in that supposedly spontaneous, but internal intuition and technology-intensive process of creation of the work. If, as she states in her text, she sought the impression of original naturalness, light touch, vitality of form and “non-torture”, then she achieved this goal with heaps. All works seem to have emerged without much effort, as if they came from nature, minimally touched by human hands, unpredictable, and changing in the eyes. When viewed from a different viewing angle or with different lighting, they look different each time.

In the works of Rima Leipuvienė, the main principles of Zen aesthetics can be seen: asymmetry of form, simplicity, ascetic grandeur, naturalness, intangible depth, uncertainty, and seriousness. The Japanese also give these qualities to nature. The intricacies, the shock of the audience with superficial effects, the demonstration of a perfect and complete form, which contradicts the constant effect of the flow of time that marks each object, are alien for this kind of art. In this art, one cannot lie to oneself or to the viewer, because the goal of such creation is an authentic meaningfulness of the inner state and the flight of the spirit, trust not in rational thinking, but in intuition and the breakthrough of feelings. Rima makes no secret of her admiration for Henry Bergson’s philosophy of intuitivism, in which she found the rationale for his creative position. The theory of time (“duration”) discovered by the thinker, which speaks of the time flowing in each of us and measuring the material world, has made it possible to explain the nature and subjectivity of personal creation.

Rima Leipuvienė's attention to the aesthetics of the East is not surprising. Modern Lithuanian ceramics of the 20th century was undoubtedly influenced by East Asian ceramics due to the studies of Liudvikas Strolis (1905-1996) in interwar Paris. In Paris, Strolis was interested in the works of English ceramicist (orientalists), who had a great impact on Europe, and combined the tendencies of new decorativeness with oriental fashion. Oriental ceramics also influenced other representatives of the older generation of Lithuanian ceramicists: Jonas Mikėnas, Teodora Miknevičienė, their students, and the pupils' students. The works of our ceramic classics were restrained, combining the impulses of Lithuanian folk and the Oriental ceramics. However, there are differences. Strolis and his followers were fascinated by the aesthetic features of Oriental ceramics, in which they saw similarities with Lithuanian folk art, while the Oriental ceramics for Rima Leipuvienė is acceptable due to values, closeness to nature and internal attitudes – to seek inspiration in the depths of her spirit and seek communion with nature. She is impressed by the specific principles of aesthetics of the East (the aspirations of emptiness, harmony, imbalance, and naturalness), which she seeks to establish in her work.

In one of the last works of decorative plasticity “Ensō” (in Japanese it is a circle), the artist depicted a sculptural variation of a calligraphic Zen wheel. What is Rima Leipuvienė's ensō, according to which the Japanese decide on the artist's spiritual and artistic maturity? They are convinced that not everyone is able to draw the ideal circle. Her ceramic ensō – a rich plastic, as it is suitable for this type of work – is unfinished, slightly connecting the beginning and the end, floating in the air, and barely attached to the base. However, at the same time, it is strong and regular because it reflects the artist's strong determination to strive for perfection.

 

Lijana Šatavičiūtė-Natalevičienė, Art Critic 

 


[1] Erika Grigoravičienė, Modernization, (post) modernisms, new modernism: concepts of the history of Lithuanian art since the late 1960s, Acta Academiae Artium Vilnensis,vol. 95: Was the silent modernism in Lithuania? Compiled by Elona Lubytė, Vilnius: VAA Publishing House, 2020, p. 72.

 
 

GALLERY

Ceramic Artworks (2020-2021)

Welcome to the gallery of high-fired sculptural ceramic works. Ceramic pieces created from chamotte clay, pigments, self-made ash glazes, fired in a temperature of 1300 c. 

Tėkmė/Flow
Pastanga/Endeavour
Globėjas/Guardian
Viena diena/One day
One year/One year
Džiaugsmo haiku/Haiku of joy
Gyvenimo atkarpos/Life segments
Mylėta/Loved
Ilgesys/Longiness
Kosminis išsipildymas/Cosmic fulfilment
Nauja pradžia/New beginning
Vermė/Stream
Sapno gimtis/Birth of a dream
Patirtis/Experience
Dalintis pasaulį į dvidalis/Share the world in two halves
Laiko skaičiavimas/Time counting
Vieneri metai (nugaros pusė)/One year (back side)
Būties verpetai/Swirls of existence
Būties verpeta (nugaros pusė) Swirls of existence (back side)
Pasaka/Fairytail
Gimtoji žemė/Homeland
Ramybė/Tranquility
Kryptis/Direction
Idėjos auginimas/Cultivation of idea
Laiko skaičiavimas (nugaos pusė)/Time counting (back side)
Pavėjui/Downwind
Gamtos dėsnis (nugaros pusė)/Law of nature (back side)
Gamtos desnis/Law of nature
Enso
Lemtis/Fate
Pastanga / Endeavour zoom detail

"Creation is every time a new self discovery and extension..."

Rima Leipuvienė

Rima Leipuviene portrait photo

RIMA LEIPUVIENĖ

Ceramics Artist

To learn more about artist or to schedule a private meeting, please contact.

Cosmic Fulfilment zoom detail

CONTACT

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THE PROJECT IS FINANCED BY THE LITHUANIAN COUNCIL FOR CULTURE.

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