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The Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania
The Ministry of Culture
of the Republic of Lithuania

The Lithuanian Media Support Foundation



UNESCO Cultural Management and Cultural Policy Chair at Vilnius Academy of Fine Arts

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Obeliai Poetic Spring


The Obeliai Poetic Spring officially is not included into the calendar of the Poetry Spring events. These poetry readings have been formulated by local artist Rimvydas Pupelis. A propos, almost nobody knows that Rimvydas writes graphic poetry and brilliant prose texts. These poetry readings, which the “Spiritus movens” of the event Rimvydas has dialectly named “Anys kalbęs žodžiais” (“They will talk in words”), I dare to call a poetry minifestival. From the May of 2000 (the readings always take place on a Friday of May, just before the burst of the traditional Poetry Spring) several dozens poets from Šiauliai, Rokiškis, Vilnius, Kupiškis, Biržai, Ukmmergė, Kaunas and Panevėžys have presented their works. “Anys kalbęs žodžiais” is special because every year it is held in a different and usually non-cultural place of Obeliai town. The first readings were organized in an automobile repair shop, the second – in the stabling of the Estate (and in a potato cellar in the times of kolkhozes), the third – in the railway station, the fourth – in the Shooters House, the fifth – in a barn, the sixth – in a non-working boiler room, the seventh – in the yard of blocks of flats on a hill. Rimvydas Pupelis together with his supporting team (Romas Kundelis, Rytis Gruzdas, Jonas Buziliauskas and others) always surprises the comers with an unusual scenography of the event and with musical inserts (they are played using all kinds of “instruments”: pictures, bicycle wheels, spoons, buckets, cartoon boxes, sticks and emty squash bottles). The artist from Zaduojiškis and a loyal participant Eugenijus Raugas plays very memorable jazz on an accordion. The poetry readings “Anys kalbęs žodžiais” are full of joy and visuality. A la fluxus exhibition of the participants D. Gintalas, P. Rakštikis, A. Jurkaitis. R. Šileika. V. Butvilas-Mažylis and V. Šileikienė works was exhibited in the railway station. Photographs by Gintautas Dainys, works by art studio pupils of the informal education department of the Obeliai Secondary School (the leader - artist Sigita Klemkaitė) and the project “Še kad nori” by V. Butvila-Mažylis were presented in the events of other years. Every time an open letter of the poetry readings “Anys kalbęs žodžiais” is published. Therefore I do not have a right to swallow the fact that the process of Obeliai poetry has been included into the 7th grade art textbooks su-heading “Fluxus in Lithuania” (the author of the textbook Kęstutis Šalytis).

The poets gathered to the place near Latvia cannot complain about the lack of attention. There is no lack of listeners: there was never less than 20 listeners, and in 2002 there was even almost 100 listeners! Together with poets – pupils, inteligents, the aristocracy of the town (senior Eugenijus Narkūnas, priest Juozapas Kuodis).

Young poets are usually open to surprises and challenges. Antanas A. Jonynas and Kornelijus Platelis – persons who are becoming classic – read their texts in Pupelis festival. Between the partcipants of the Obeliai festival were several foreigners as well – a Latvian from Riga Zane Brūvere and an Italian from Neapollli Giuseppe Zevola. Diuseppe even issued a book for the Obeliai poetry fiesta of 2005. The text “About The Unlimited Universal And Worlds” by Giordano Bruno, which Giuseppe read in the event, was published in eight foreign languages in the book.

Be sorry those who have not heard the nightingales of Obeliai or the farting horse of Rimvydas Pupelis father!

Ričardas Šileika


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