Director: Emilija Škarnulytė

Lithuania, 2012, documentary, 13 minutes, lithuanian with english subtitles

In the spring of 1986, Aldona lost her vision and became permanently blind. The nerves in her eyes were poisoned. Doctors claimed that it was probably due to Chernobyl's Nuclear Power Plant explosion. In the film we follow Aldona through a daily sojourn to Grūtas Park, touching both the past and the present. This film is a sensuous portrait of a woman who has outlived a brutal system, marked by it, but not defeated. We are in her kingdom now, in her sound, smell and touch. The reading of the wrinkled surface of the monumental sculptures by Aldona‘s hand is a gesture of a forgiving, tender and wise queen. The blind seer is an old archetype. They are blind, but yet they can see more than we can.

About the director:

Emilija Škarnulytė (b. 1987) lives and works in Tromsø and Berlin. Škarnulytė is an interdisciplinary artist who mainly uses video and photography in her practice while also creating installations and performances. She studied at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts in Milan and graduated at Tromsø Academy of Contemporary Art. Škarnulytė´s latest solo shows are "Mirror Matter", Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin, 2017; "Manifold", Podium, Oslo, 2017; "Extended Phenotypes", Viafarini, Milan, 2016; "QSO Lens", CAC Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius, 2015. Her works have also been exhibited and shown at the Venice Biennial (Italu), the Rotterdam International Film Festival (the Netherlands), the São Paulo Biennial (Brazil), International Short Film Festival Oberhausen (Germany), Pompidou Film Festival Hors Pistes (France), Whitechapel gallery (London, UK) and elsewhere. She has received Kino der Kunst Project Award, Munich, 2017; National Lithuanian Art Prize for Young Artist, 2016; Anne og Jakob Weidemanns award, Høstutstillingen, 2015.

Section: Conversation between Anouk de Clerq and Emilija Škarnulytė