Lukiškės Square

During the Pink Soup Fest being held in the capital for the first time on 10 June, there will be fun for the whole family throughout the city as well as works of art that will stimulate the imagination. One of them is an illusion installation created by artist Jolita Vaitkutė, which will give you a chance to feel what it means to find yourself in splattered šaltibarščiai.

Šaltibarščiai – a source of inspiration

Artist Jolita Vaitkutė is dedicating her illusion installation entitled “Splattered Šaltibarščiai” to the pink soup itself. According to Vaitkutė, even though most Lithuanians know and love šaltibarščiai, it is rarely used in works of art. She adds that she is trying to change this established tradition through her own works of art.

“Because of its uniqueness, šaltibarščiai often becomes an inspiration for ideas or illustrations for me. When I found out that Vilnius was having the Pink Soup Fest, I immediately got to work and applied this theme in my work. I think that this soup is reflected too rarely in Lithuanian art, because šaltibarščiai is hardly depicted at all in famous still lifes or paintings of food. We need to start fully incorporating this soup into art and visual expressions and show it to a wide audience. Like in Japan, there are a lot of food models of different soups. They look so realistic that they can even be mistaken for the real thing. I believe that a symbolic food model of šaltibarščiai would really help spread the word about it and attract even more tourists to Lithuania,” says the artist.

Will invite you to climb into a bowl of šaltibarščiai

Šaltibarščiai is a delicious dish, but some unpleasant things can happen when you’re eating it. Vaitkutė says that this was her inspiration for the installation that she created for the Pink Soup Fest. “Šaltibarščiai is a frequent dish on my menu. I love eating this soup, and it is often reflected in my artistic activities and work as well. However, it wasn’t uncommon for me to eat šaltibarščiai while wearing white clothes and end up getting splattered with it. That’s exactly what gave me the idea of creating splattered šaltibarščiai in the city that people could climb into,” says the artist about the idea for the installation that she created in Vilnius.

Vaitkutė adds that the installation was based on the motifs of illusion art: “When residents and guests of Vilnius come to see my piece, they will find this illusion where they can take a picture and experience the most vivid Lithuanian dish that tourists are so fascinated by. Sometimes I feel like there is a lack of illusion-based art in Lithuania, so I’m going to try to fill this void with my approach to šaltibarščiai and leave visitors with positive emotions when they find themselves in a bowl of their favourite soup.”

The artist is delighted with the “pink fever” going on in the city and hopes that the festival will develop into a long-standing tradition. “The Pink Soup Fest is one of the best ideas for the city of Vilnius. We have amazing Lithuanian dishes that are interesting and feature a unique flavour or unexpected combinations of ingredients. Like other dishes, we can definitely brag about šaltibarščiai to guests of the city, advertising it and inviting them to come taste it. Its uniqueness stirs the imagination and creative horizons,” notes the artist.

You can see the piece at: Lukiškės Square. 

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