Workshops in Kėdainiai begin - October 31st
En route to Kėdainiai the Polish group stop at Vandžiogala, once Polish Wędziagoła, where the graves of Czesław Miłosz’s grandparents are to be found at Holy Trinity Church - including that of Artura Miłosza, who took part in the January Uprising of 1863 against the Russian Empire. We are told that this was the first church Miłosz remembered attending as a child.
At the Multicultural centre (Daugiakultūris Centras) in Kėdainiai, Rimantas Žirgulis and Audronė Pečiulytė give all workshop participants a brief audio-visual guide to the town, the history of the museums here and their work. We are welcomed by the Manager of the Department of Cultural and Sports, Kęstutis Stadalnykas.
The Lithuanian group present short features about themselves and their interests and selected objects/places around the town they have ben studying – as well as some fine instrumental musical and vocal expositions, performed by Akvilė Zigmantavičiūtė (performing on kanklės, a Lithuanian string musical instrument of the zither family), Arnis Aleinikovas and Agota Ščiukaitė.
On Sunday, October 13th, at the House of the Borderland in Sejny, there was a meeting of the Polish group of participants of Borderland Atlantis. Their talks with Krzysztof Czyżewski revolved around concepts of small homelands, roots, exile, uprooting, travel. As a basis for the discussions we used two texts of Miłosz: LA COMBE and NOTES ON EXILE
We have tried to answer some of the questions that arise form the discussion. Such as: whether we have a place we can identify ourselves with, place where we feel ‘at home’? But what is it that makes us feel this way? Do we want to stay here, or rather return here? Are we the new generation of ‘exiles’? What is our condition as a modern person? What does it mean to be a ‘cosmpolitan’? Is rooting ‘at home’ in the mind, or does it rather help us to be rooted by being in another, less familiar place?
Update on Residency in Lithuania
The second full gathering of Borderland Atlantis will take place in Kėdainiai, Lithuania, at the end of October.
The programme of activity includes:
Workshops on the multicultural heritage and the archaeology of Kėdainiai with Audronė Pečiulytė and Algirdas Juknevičius
Workshops in song and dance, art, wood carving, paper cut out craft – with Jovita Buinevičienė, Audrius Vasiliauskas, Albina Mackevičienė.
Presentation by photographer Vydas Bečelis.
An overview of the web site by Brendan Jackson, explaining how you can contribute your photos, texts, comments about the place you live to share with a wider audience.
Lectures on literature: Miłosz, Venclova, Donelaitis.
Reflections on the work of Lithuanian group and a retrospective review of movies by amateur study “Megėjas”.
An exploration tour of the area, including Šetenia, where (former barn of the manor where Czesław Miłosz was born) and Paberžė, (where a January uprising of 1863 began in Lithuania. Route: Apytalaukis manor, Šeteniai barn, Šventybrastis church and graves of ancestors of Miłosz, Krekenava regional park with educational program, Museum of Uprising of 1863 and church complex in Paberžė, manor of Kalnaberžė (which belonged to the Prime Minister of Russian Empire Piotr Stolypin), the manor of Sirutiškis (which belonged to ancestors of Miłosz and Bronislaw Komorowski – President of Poland).
A visit to Kėdainiai cemetery on All Saints’ Day.