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Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History
Vilniaus Gaono Žydų Istorijos Muziejus



Exhibit of the month

Published: 2023-05-31

Elena Nona Zavadskienė. Writer Grigorijus Kanovičius, 1992.
Canvas, oil, 90 x 130.  Acc. No. VŽM 1474

Artist Elena Nona Zavadskienė has created an entire collection of portraits of Lithuanian artists, writers, actors and directors by employing various artistic techniques. The collection of the Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History contains four works by Zavadskienė, a figurative composition and portraits of Adomas Jacovskis and Grigorijus Kanovičius. The artist portrays talented, strong personalities with a critical worldview. She perfectly feels and conveys the character of her models. Each canvas depicts a bright individual that stands out for their own mindset, emotions and life experience.

The portrait of Grigorijus Kanovičius (1929–2023), a prose writer, film and theatre playwright, poet, and translator, was painted in 1992. It represents a powerful and apt reflection of the inner state of the portrayed personality. The viewer can actually feel that intangible unity of form and content. The portrayed individual does not look at the viewer––their eyes are set on the future. The free-flowing, virtuoso-like technique of painting, bright colours and a thoughtful dynamic composition fill the portrait with certain inner energy, which testifies to the exceptional talent of the author of the portrait.

Painter Elena Nona Zavadskienė was born in 1943 in Odessa, Ukraine. In 1962, she graduated from the Odessa School of Theatre Arts. Zavadskienė has been taking part in art exhibitions since 1966. She is a member of the Lithuanian Artists' Union since 1975. Zavadskienė has held solo exhibitions in Lithuania, Belarus, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, USA, and Venezuela. Her works are held in the Lithuanian National Museum of Art, M. K. Čiurlionis Museum of Art, the Lithuanian Art Foundation (LDS), the Lithuanian Theatre, Film and Music Museum, the Tama Art University Museum in Tokyo, and are owned by private collectors.

Prepared by Irina Nikitina, curator of the VGMJH art collections
© Photograph courtesy of Paulius Račiūnas
© From the collections of VGMJH




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