These paintings are made for a different order;

The process of painting them is almost the same as doing nothing. But for doing completely nothing there should be a different system as well.

You do some things whilst there are no other ideas of doing different kinds of things. You paint in your studio, you paint in the dark, you drive a taxi car, you go walking.

It’s a pure bluff, so pure that it is not a bluff anymore.

Similar to the opening of Thomas Philips department store in 1994 – the first self-service shop in Lithuania.

Whereas before you had to ask for an item at the counter and the salesman gave an item to you from the shelf behind him.

Self-service changed the way items in the shops were being approached.

These paintings have never been lost or misplaced, they’re all here, painted with branded paints by Thomas Philipps, all made to be in a different system.

After the premiere of the recent season of Stranger Things, many reflected on its principal location – the Starcourt mall, seeing it as a requiem for an American mall; a place where anything could happen and a site which had an important role in many horror movies of the 80’s. In the TV show, which uses nostalgia and sentiment as its driving force, the mall became not only a place to hang out or a simulacrum of reality, but a civilization in itself, with the Soviets using it as a cover for their massive underground base in which they were researching the Upside-Down – a parallel universe, which looks close to reality, but is inhabited by monsters. In real life, long before the growth of online shopping, malls have been known for having a special power to turn the direction of things, such as intervening in the daily routines of small towns, forcing small business to close and changing the habits of locals. Thus, since its invention, a mall has always been both a parallel universe full of potential for different interactions to happen, and an intruder which can determine political and economic interactions on both micro and macro levels. Department stores and supermarkets – the predecessors and the grandparents of shopping malls – have been functioning in similar ways: serving as destinations, delineating practices of individuals and having lives of their own.

 

Working for you for more than 30 years – that's Thomas Philipps.

In 1986 we started as a small trading company with five employees and two markets, today we employ more than 600 employees in logistics and administration at five locations. There are another 2,500 employees on site in our stores. Whether for garden, household, hobby or your pet: week by week we face the challenge to present you a unique assortment with attractive offers. You will find our new brochure every week on our homepage, on Facebook and of course fresh from the press in your mailbox.

It is often a story  – a backstory – that cloaks an experience in a particular atmosphere. We tell stories. More than we share information. We augment the conversation, project it onto a larger surface until it acquires coherence in the listener where none had existed before, where none will exist shortly after. It is something like an ability to inspire momentary epiphanies.

It was an early morning in June. A few days before we'd gone to the river. We'd seen a snake slithering through the grass. The others didn't believe us but we know what we saw. G welcomed us to his studio. We asked about some framed paintings in the corner. He said, these I made to sell. That's why they're "cute". There were many pieces in the room. A series he'd painted in the dark. Another series of mostly monochrome paintings on paper, layers upon layers of colour to create a final impression, most were heavy with paste which gave them a softness. We spread a hundred (maybe more) small black and white drawings on the floor. Some narrative unfolded. G said, “I also have these to show you, and these.”

Outside the window, G and L saw their old professor pull up in

his car.

L said, "so you buy your paints at Thomas Philipps?"

Visiting hours of Gytis Aštrauskas exhibition: Fridays 6 pm - 8 pm or by appointment: info@montostattoo.lt


Sponsored by the Lithuanian Council for Culture