Already in its second year, the exhibition invites its visitors to explore the photographic representation of creatives and their surroundings, as well as the questions that concern them. Here one can see attempts to reflect, in different ways and forms, on both one‘s own the other’s lives while the environment, times, and interests are changing. For the selected artists (Juozas Budraitis, Rūta Urbonaitė, Vytenis Mališauskas, Tomas Terekas, Romualdas Vinča, Laitas Rekus, Darius Jurevičius), photography is not the exclusively main activity, although it has an important place in their lives, and it is the originality of the authors and the raised questions that connect them. This year‘s topic – a portrait – is one of the most difficult photographic genres if one wishes to discover something new or to surprise the viewer. A portrait looks back at the people around or taking part in the lives of photographers, envisioning them according to the personal perception of each – self exploration. This individual aim is also collectively shared, and in the majority of works the visitor can find connections familiar to themselves. Curator of the exhibition, Donatas Stankevičius, invites to explore the works not only in the context of the value scale, but also in terms of a shift in the portrait genre. A part of the exhibition consists of art criticism analyses reflecting different time periods, which help to understand the contemporary perception of the portrait genre and its rendering. Elements of time, the explored topic, or technique are not important, much more focus is on the individual self-representation and the importance of the chosen topic to the authors themselves, as well as the aim to encourage the creative activity of photographers who have potential.
“My Backyard” is not as much about a place as it is about a certain condition. About the moment you want explore yourself or the environment, about the search for forms and ways to do so. It is also about time, which describes how the person was in the past, what they cared about, how much of this precious measuring unit they dedicated to capturing the image or thinking about it. Eventually, one begins to understand that the “Backyard” is always present, never disappears, only changes together with the person. Only itself can let new things inside. Only itself is responsible for it. And even when we think we are in another person’s backyard, we are actually strolling around our own.