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Čiurlionis’ road

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from 60 per person

Čiurlionis’ road

from 60 per person

Route of the excursion: Vilnius – Old Varėna – Druskininkai – Kaunas – Plungė – Rietava.

Three-day tour.

The price shown is for a group of 10 people.

The price includes: guide services.

Transport, food, accommodation and other services – for an extra charge.

Day 1

Going to the Old Varėna, the town where M. K. Čiurlionis was born. Art school, memorial stone (sculptor E. Penkauskas, 1985), Church of St Michael the Archangel, a symbolic sculpture of Angel. From Varėna going to Druskininkai. “Čiurlionis Road” – ensembles of wooden sculptures and crossroad chapels. Checking in a hotel in Druskininkai. Rest and lunch. After lunch a visit to Memorial Čiurlionis Museum. Tour of Drusininkai. Free time. Overnight at hotel.

Day 2

Breakfast. Going to Kaunas, a visit to M. K. Čiurlionis Museum of Art. Pedestrian tour along Laisvės avenue. Free time for lunch. After lunch tour of the Old Town. Going to Plungė. Rest. Dinner.

Day 3

Breakfast. A visit to M. Oginskis’ manor, territory of the estate with park in Plungė. The supporter provided possibility for Čiurlionis to learn in his orchestra and play in it. Čiurlionis performed in Rietavas, Riga with the orchestra. Free time for lunch. After lunch going to Rietavas, a visit to Oginskis palace. Return home in the evening.

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Čiurlionis’ road

K. Čiurlionis, an artist and composer, was a unique creator, who contributed greatly to Lithuania’s culture. His close friend V. Moravskis told: “We all felt that he was an exceptional personality not only of great intellect but great moral power as well”. “But one must have light with him, inside, in order to lighten the darkness for all standing on the path in order they saw and found light inside and took their own path not standing in the darkness” (M. K. Čiurlionis).

Music since childhood. He was born in Varėna (now – the Old Varėna) in 1875 in a family of an organist and cantor. His childhood was spent in Druskininkai, his father taught him to play the piano and organ. Memories from childhood – beauty of nature, majestic Nemunas River and Raigardas valley. Nature became the main source of inspiration for him. Since 1889 until 1893 he lived in Plungė learning to play in orchestra school of M. Oginskis’ estate. He became the flutist of the orchestra and took part in concerts.

Music as profession. Having chosen the profession of a musician and supported by M. Oginskis, he studied at Warsaw Music Institute, in piano and composition class. Later he continued studies in Leipzig conservatoire. Čiurlionis created symphonic poems “Jūra” (The Sea), “Miške” (In the forest), cantata “De profundis”, preludes and variations for the piano, fugues for the organ, harmonized a number of folk songs. Comprehensive education. In addition to his speciality, he devoted a lot of time for comprehensive education. His notebooks from the period of studies in Warsaw show his interest in geology and history, chemistry and geometry, physics and astronomy, astrology and ancient mythology, ancient and modern languages, philosophy, eastern and western religions. Theosophy, occultism, esoterica etc.

A turn to art. Since 1902, Čiurlionis got interested in art. In 1902-1904, he lived in Warsaw and learnt drawing. Here he painted a seven paintings cycle “Funeral Symphony”. His early works were influenced by symbolism fashionable in the then Europe. He painted and created music very intensively. Art trends of symbolism, romanticism, secession dominating at the clash of 19-20th centuries blend in Čiurlionis’ paintings, first signs of a new art trend, abstractionism, appear as well. Some art specialists title Čiurlionis the beginner of abstract art and compare his work to that of V. Kandinski, A. Beklin, E. Munch. Čiurlionis perceived space in a very specific way; his works are painted as if from bird’s view. Cosmic vision hue is seen in his paintings. The artist is interested in the development of the universe, its structure, issues of world ruling spirit, nature and its cycles, sense of human life.

Synthesis of art and music. At the time synthesis of arts was one of the main trends among symbolists, abstractionists and representatives of Art Nouveau. Expressive synthesis of art and music is observed in Čiurlionis’ paintings. As a composer he applied principles of music in art using mostly the form of sonata (Allegro, Andante, Finale). Triptych “Sonata of the Sea” was in three parts, same as in music. Examples of such unique synthesis are ”Sonata od the Snake”, “Sonata of the Sun”, “Sonata of Summer”, “Sonata of Spring” and others.

Vilnius and love. In 1907 Čiurlionis moves to Vilnius. He takes an active part in Lithuania’s national revival and public activity. He participates in exhibitions in Lithuania, Poland, St Petersburg. In Vilnius, he got acquainted with writer Sofija Kymantaite, who also took an active part in national rebirth. He spent a lot of time with his fiancée and painted (in Plungė, Palanga, Druskininkai). In 1909 they got married in Šateikiai not far from Plungė. Living with Sofija in Plungė he created 20 paintings (“Aukuras”, “Angelėliai”, “Lietuviškos kapinės” etc.).

Čiurlionis’ house in Vilnius. In 1995, Čiurlionis’ House was opened in Vilnius at Savičiaus str. 11. It is the place, where Čiurlionis rented a 17 square metres flat. Now a Memorial Centre dedicated to the artist and composer is functioning here for over 20 years.

Creative heritage. Almost all his creative heritage is collected in M. K. Čiurlionis Museum of Art in Kaunas: 220 painting, 52 graphic prints, over 700 drawings, pieces of music, manuscripts, letters. During WWI paintings were kept in the flat of poet J. Baltrušaitis in Moscow, during WWII they were kept in the safe of the Bank of Lithuania. After regaining independence paintings by Čiurlionis are shown in exhibitions worldwide: in Berlin, Brussels, Tokyo, Bonn, Paris.

National M. K. Čiurlionis Museum of Art looking from distance reminds of a crown: symbolizing the crown of Vytautas the Great of Lithuania; many paintings of Čiurlionis include the symbol of a crown either.

Čiurlionis’ Road is a memorial ensemble of wooden sculptures and roadside chapels along the road Varėna – Druskininkai. The ensemble was created by 26 folk masters, who had their camp in Perloja in 1975-1976, dedicated to the 100th anniversary of M. K. Čiurlionis birth.

K. Čiurlionis about time. “Time is a very important poem, played by orchestra solely to me. Something blocks my hearing and I hear nothing. It is a pity, because the composition goes on and perhaps will soon end. The part I did not hear will be lost. That composition is life, and it could be played only once”.