Romualdas Požerskis. The Baltic way (10.09 — 02.10)

Romualdas Požerskis
The Baltic way
1989


With the support of the Embassy of Lithuania in Belarus. 

“The Baltic Way” is Romualdas Požerskis documentary series named after a peaceful political
demonstration that occurred in 1989. On 23, August 1989, more than 2 000 000 citizens of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia joined their hands to form a human chain showing their protest against the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany and expressing their hopes and desires for independence. The human chain spanned for 675.5 kilometers across all the Baltic countries: from Vilnius to Tallinn. Romualdas Požerskis documented this event.

The action “The Baltic Way” or “Chain of Freedom” became an example of non-violent resistance.Almost 7 months after the demonstration, Lithuania gained independence and became the first Baltic republic to leave the USSR.

A joint presence not only expresses a desire for independence, but also creates a field for solidarity and community. “Standing together” turns out to be an important political statement, a driving force – people’s bodily manifestation becomes a statement. “The Baltic Way” brings to one’s mind an idea once expressed by the American scholar Judith Butler, “If we consider why freedom of assembly is separate from freedom of expression, it is precisely because the power that people have to gather together is itself an important political prerogative, quite distinct from the right to say whatever they have to say once people have gathered.” The bodily presence of the citizens of three Baltic countries transformed into a powerful protest force.

In his works, Romualdas Požerskis shows not only the impressive social choreography of the protest, but also people’s individual faces expressing a desire and expectation of change.

#gaps_in_history
#social_choreography

Romualdas Požerskis is a classic of Lithuanian photography. Since 1976 – a member of Union of the Lithuanian art photographers. In 1990, he won the Lithuanian National Prize (the highest award for cultural achievements), in 2004 – for his input to European cultural heritage fostering and keeping –he was awarded the premium of Alfred Toepfer and a year later – the Order of Merits to Lithuania.

10.09 — 02.10
“Ў” Gallery
12:00 – 21:00, daily

10.09
Opening
“Ў” Gallery, 19:00