Blessed are the ones that move (2022)
 
The exhibition was looking into the multifold meanings of moving and migrating. Taking Marcinkonys train station as a starting point, the stories of traveling dispersed their own unique ways. Is it white storks’ roosting stop during their long migratory journey, is it seasonal market stall holders’ migration from the villages to the city, is it people’s hopes to find a safer stay behind the border… In the exhibition “Blessed are those that move“ a strongly politized term migration acquired a multiplicity of forms, paradoxically temporarily rooted in the stop or a station.

In the exhibition, the experimental documentary “LAK” was screened on a monitor frame created in collaboration with local artist Kastytis Skromanas. New mixed media print works were displayed alongside an archival image by Marijonas Baranauskas titled “Foragers coming back from the forest” (1970) taken in the Varena district. Meanwhile, text installation on the walls contextualized the works and their key ideas in relation to the specific location - which sadly became infamous for stranded refugees, the majority of whom - were from Arabic-speaking countries, which migrating storks pass on their way.
 
While one movement is seen as a symbol of freedom and another - as a threat of intrusion, the exhibition asked what is a migration if not a natural course of events, and suggested its visitors see it as part of human as well as more-than-human worlds.

MARIJA NEMČENKO ARŽANYCH