American-Lithuanian Photographer Edis Jurcys’ Exhibition

May 12, 2022

The exhibition “The Anxiety of Being” by American-Lithuanian photographer Edis Jurčys that ran at the National Library of Lithuania from April to the end of June includes a series of photographs entitled “The Power of Death and Life” (2021). The exhibition (curator Danguolė Ruškienė) was organized by Ieva Simonaitytė Public Library of Klaipėda County and financed by the Lithuanian Council for Culture and Klaipėda City Municipality.

The work of Edis Jurčys is relatively well known in Lithuania. Although he has lived in the USA for over three decades, he always presents his latest works in his home country first, to which he returns almost every year. At the end of 2021, the artist donated a part of his photo archive to the Ieva Simonaitytė Public Library.

The exhibition “The Anxiety of Being” is the photographer’s reaction to today’s world. The author delves into the issue of climate change, the very pronounced changes in the climate of individual regions, leading to negative consequences. Juršys’ photographs show the fires in California, devastating entire villages and towns, destroying lives and killing people. But, according to the artist, his current works are not local but touch upon global themes. He calls them visual diaries in photography. They are important because they act as a warning and signal a threat. Jurčys plans to continue working on climate change in the future, visiting the same places where villages have burnt down but people have already started to return.

Edis Jurčys was born in 1957 in Klaipėda. He started taking photographs while still at school. After graduating, he started cooperating with the Society of Photographic Art of the Lithuanian SSR (since 1989, Lithuanian Photographers’ Union). Soon after, he travelled to work in Moscow, and in 1989, he emigrated to the USA. He currently lives and works in Portland.

Jurčys has created over 20 photographic series on highly topical social issues, held over 30 solo exhibitions in Portland, Seattle, Lithuania, Austria, Belgium, Hungary, Japan, New Zealand and elsewhere, participated in group exhibitions, and has received awards and recognition.