Photographer Tadas Černiauskas, illustrated by Gabrielius Mackevičius
Tell us a bit about yourself. What are the first things that come into your mind when you think about what you like and what you don’t?
I probably like waterfalls. Some time ago I was in a place, where a little waterfall sighs. The best thing is that you can sit down, so that it’s flowing behind you and then you quickly lead back into it. So you will have to go through it and lean back on to a rock, from which the little waterfall is falling. And then you can watch at it from the inner side, when it’s walling on your stomach. It’s such a strange feeling.
One very interesting person has told me that there’s only love and fear, and everything else are their variations and expressions. I believed. So, I like love expressions and I don’t like those of fear.
You are an artist of quite a broad profile, when did you get interested in textile? How did you come to the thought to create such particular objects?
In Spring, I went to be with dzen Buddhists in this cave, in which they gathered to sit on benches. Then, while sitting, I understood that I’m going to do something natural and geometrical. Later, in the summer, after sitting down on that bench, I understood that I need to start working with textile, so I did. To my surprise, everything is moving sort of naturally.
Motives of woodland animals and folk crafts (correct me if I’m wrong) are close to you. Can you tell us a bit more about that? Why are they close to you? How did you find them?
First of all, I will tell that I think that all of this creation is an expression of god through a man. I can’t talk for everyone, but I suspect that people just let the will of god to be expressed through them and then something fun is done or not. And that permission is the thing that decides how all of this looks. I don’t know why I’m followed by animal and folk motives. That naturalness and folk is just unavoidably close, beautiful to me. I can’t tell that I choose on my own. It’s difficult to say why I like something or why it’s beautiful.
How does the creation of your textile objects develops? Are they independent or is every one of them fitted to a certain single clothing item or maybe to a wearer of it?
The illustration is drawn without clothing. Depending on the illustration of clothing, the materials, colors are chosen. That’s why the same drawing can be on very different object. I like this sequence: the wearer chooses the garment and I select the materials of illustrations. It’s very convenient this way because the wearer can select garment he likes, with the color, design he likes, to try it on and know that the size fits him and to give it to me. Or he can lift some clothing that’s not wanted anymore which needs life that it could be wearable again.
What else are you involved in? Are you taking part in social activities. You also create illustrations and other artworks, right? Do you share it or are you doing all of this just for your personal pleasure?
Of course, I’m involved in social activities – I meet people, communicate, I like games, cinema, concerts, etc.
Apart from textile, I like to draw. If that drawing is being made with a computer then it usually stays there, and if it’s done on, for example, a wooden board then it hangs on my wall until it goes off to someone else’s room. I do that sort of for myself, but when I’m done with it then I don’t need to have that near me. I can also look how those pieces are doing, they become like family members, whom it’s fun to meet sometimes.
I know that you were the initiator of a couple of internet projects, maybe you can tell some more about them? Why did you took the initiative?
Some time ago me and Agnė Mackevičiūtė enjoyed Nijolė Miliauskaitė’s poetry. We liked it so much that we hurried to scan the pages, recognize text with a special program and we put it all on the internet, so that everyone could enjoy it at any time.
It happens so that I like fonts. There are very pretty ones. Some of them I tried to apply to Lithuanian and used in works of graphic design. Someday the font called Krikštas was born. Then the thought also was born that it would be great, if there was an internet site, in which there would be only Lithuanian and applied for Lithuanian fonts. Otherwise, you can find Lithuanian applied fonts in various internet places and works of Lithuanian font creators in specialized font shops. I thought about such local space to share specific creation – fonts. To graphic designers, fonts are always relevant, so they could share them. This way the site schrift.mono.lt was born, in which there’re some works of a couple of Lithuanians that they decided to share. It would be great, if there would appear more of them.
And some time ago, with Nerijus Rimkus, we had lunch in Bruce Lee bar. And so, from nowhere, word after word, we decided to begin an internet fairy tale, in which the whole Lithuania could participate – sekusekupasaka.lt. Later, a tale for the whole world appeared – you can find it here.
What is your opinion about the idea of quality that is becoming more and more popular? I mean the tools that are easier to reach and that make the creation beginning process easier because of the internet and technologies. Doesn’t the creation of the more “serious” creators become less valuable?
I think that all sorts of technologies and inventions always have their pluses and minuses but I’m for the bigger space for creativity. Creative people will always take advantage of new opportunities and will make our hearts smile. It’s very good that all kinds of people engage in the creation. It gives them joy and their creation are not necessarily worse than that of so called serious creators. I often like children’s artworks and it’s just interesting to see how a person creates, who has not been taught how to do it.
I believe that the artworks of the more serious artists can not become less valuable.
Are you interested in tendencies of the creative world, what do you think about new technologies in this field? Do they expand the spectrum of creation?
I am interested in as much as I inadvertently come across and am surprised by all sorts of beautiful inventions. I think that everything expands the spectrum of creation, everything new that we learn every day. It’s beautiful that something new gives birth to something, so you cannot even imagine what consequences a word that you said to someone, a shown link or a prank will have.
Another question about your textile work. What materials are you using and where do you get them?
When surrounding people found out that I sewed, they began to give the fabric that they do not need anymore. This way, suddenly, I had various and a lot of it. Now, I am going to fabric shops, and I search for jewelry in markets, flea markets. I like the market a lot.
Thank you for fascinating interview, Gabrielius!
If you are interested to give your garment and have it renewed and illustrated by Gabrielius, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org.
More textile works of Gabrielius here.