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Aloyzas Smilingis

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Sculptor Aloyzas Smilingis next to one of his artworks

Aloyzas Smilingis (pseudonym Elis), born on 1 January 1938, is a Lithuanian sculptor and painter. The artist is best known for his large, monumental bronze and stone sculptures as well as abstract paintings. His artistic ideas often clashed with Soviet ideology, andhis sculptures that decorate numerous cities in Lithuania, often conflicted with the Soviet regime.

Now the artist resides and works in Lithuania, at his home near Vilnius.

Biography[edit | edit source]

Aloyzas Smilingis (Elis) was born in 1938, in the small Lithuanian village e, Plunge. He had no relation to professional art in his childhood, although his artistic abilities appeared at a very early age. He saw his first painting at the age of seventeen and was so impressed that he decided to become a preofessional artist.

Elis entered Vilnius Institute of Art without any prior preparation and studied graphics. However he quitted graphics right after graduation, as well as he did with the current socialist ideology in art, so he was not welcome at the exhibitions and did not have so many commissions in former USSR.

Elis was interested in painting and sculpture. He started working with granite and established a bronze foundry. Every time when he got tired from sculpture, he took the brush in his hands and created paintings.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union the artist had a chance to visit the West, get acquainted with art collections in museums of New York, Amsterdam, London and meet famous artists. This had a great effect on his aesthetical views.

Meeting Willem de Kooning was the most impressive event in Elis career. He visited his studio in East Hampton, NY, where both abstract painters shared ideas and artistic views.

"I understood that the value of art does not depend on the number of exhibitions, nor prestigious projects, critics or curators. It is not my problem where my piece will be hanging and who will be showing it in some exhibition after a hundred years. That is why I don’t go out in the public much and don’t waste my energy preparing for shows and projects. People who are interested in my art find me and sometimes take away the works that are difficult to let go", states Elis in his website.

In his seventies, to the surprise of his family, Elis mastered digital technology and started creating impressive digital abstractions.

Artist resides and works in Lithuania. His art is owned by several Lithuanian museums and belongs to private collectors of Australia, Italy, USA, UK, Denmark, Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Lithuania and Japan.

Exhibitions, collections and awards[edit | edit source]

SOLO EXHIBITIONS[edit | edit source]

  • 2015 Paintings, A Gallery, Panevezys, Lithuania
  • 2013 Paintings and sculptures, Juškus Gallery, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 2002 Lietuvos aidas Gallery, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1988 Sculpture, Moletai, personal countryside studio, Lithuania
  • 1981 Sculpture, Vilnius Exhibition Hall, Lithuania
  • 1980 Paintings, Vilnius Artist's House, Lithuania
  • 1975 Paintings, Vilnius Art Show-room, Lithuania
  • 1975 Paintings, Moletai, Lithuania.

SELECTED EXHIBITIONS[edit | edit source]

  • 2016 VI World Art Exhibition of Samogitians, Plunge, Lithuania
  • 2013 "Day dreaming, night nightmares", Vilnius Academy of Arts gallery Titanikas, Lithuania
  • 2007 V World Art Exhibition of Samogitians, Plunge, Lithuania
  • 2003 IV World Art Exhibition of Samogitians, Plunge, Lithuania
  • 2002 New Artworks, LAA Gallery, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1999 III World Art Exhibition of Samogitians, Plunge, Lithuania
  • 1997 Quiet Modernism in Lithuania 1962 – 1982, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1996 One Sculpture Show in Vilnius Oldtown, Lithuania
  • 1992 International Sculpture Quadrennial Riga’92, Latvia
  • 1990 Exhibition of Self-Casted Bronze, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1990 World Art Exhibition of Samogitians (Lithuanian Lowlanders), Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1989 World Art Exhibition of Samogitians, Klaipeda, Lithuania
  • 1987 Lithuanian Art Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1986 Lithuanian Art Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1984 Baltic Republics Sculpture Quadrennial, Riga, Latvia
  • 1983 Soviet Sculpture Exhibition, Moscow, Russia
  • 1983 Exhibition of Lithuanian Artists in Cologne, Germany
  • 1983 Lithuanian Sculpture Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1980 Baltic Republics Sculpture Quadrennial, Riga, Latvia
  • 1980 Lithuanian Art Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1976 Lithuanian Art Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1975 Lithuanian Art Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1973 Lithuanian Young Artists Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1969 Lithuanian Young Artists Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1968 Baltic Art Exhibition, Moscow, Russia
  • 1965 Lithuanian Water-colors Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • 1964 Lithuanian Art Exhibition, Vilnius, Lithuania

AWARDS[edit | edit source]

  • 1980 Prize at the Sculpture Quadrennial, Riga, Latvia
  • 1984 First Medal at the Sculpture Quadrennial, Riga, Latvia
  • 1992 Prize at the International Sculpture Quadrennial Riga’92, Latvia
  • 2007 Lithuanian Artists Association Award for Painting, Lithuania

COLLECTIONS[edit | edit source]

  • Lithuanian art foundation, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • State Art Museum of Samogitians, Plunge, Lithuania
  • The State Art Museum of Lithuania, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • The Sculpture and Stained-glass Window Gallery, Kaunas, Lithuania
  • Sculpture Park, Klaipeda, Lithuania
  • Utena City Council, Lithuania
  • Palanga City Council, Lithuania
  • Vilnius City Council, Lithuania
  • GUERNSEYS, The Unique at Auction, New York, USA
  • Jonathan Krane Gallery, Boston, USA
  • Numerous works in Private Collections in Australia, Great Britain, Germany, Danemark, the Netherlands, Sweden, USA, Japan and Lithuania.

COMMISSIONS[edit | edit source]

  • 1992 Memorial in Alytus, Lithuania
  • 1990 Outdoor sculpture, Alytus, Lithuania
  • 1988 Outdoor sculpture, Mazeikiai, Lithuania
  • 1988 Outdoor sculpture, Zarasai, Lithuania
  • 1987 Outdoor sculpture, Pakruojis, Lithuania
  • 1984 Outdoor sculpture, Panevezys city park, Lithuania
  • 1977 Mural, International hotel in the Caucasus, Russi

References[edit | edit source]

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