Metal art has considerably old traditions in Lithuania. However, it seems that these days artists work individually and pay attention only to client orders and wishes but not to their professional development or exploration of new ideas. Where are the challenges? Where is the opportunity to place yourself in a wider context? Where is the possibility to compete with the foreign colleagues? Looking for the answers to these questions Lithuanian metal artists in 2011 initiated the first biennial of contemporary metal art METALLOphone. It was dedicated to the city of Vilnius and it was proposed to look at the Lithuanian capital from a different perspective and artists were asked to portray it using metal.

In 2014 METALOphone revives; on the 2nd of October the second biennial will be opened. The second biennial is not only dedicated to metal ART works, but also invites creators to share their stories told by metal. This METALLOphone is personal. Metal often speaks for itself – it glitters in silvery white, fascinates with rich rust color, and urges to touch it or repulses.  This time 50 artists from Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, the USA, Colombia, Poland, Sweden, Greece, Australia, Spain, the Netherlands, Israel, Germany, Italy, South Korea, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Argentina, and Japan tell their metal stories. Among the participants there are well known contemporary metal artists such as Billie Jean Theide (USA), Andrzej Boss (Poland), Yu Hiraishi (Japan), Birutė Stulgaitė (Lithuania) and also young and emerging artists like Aric Verrastro (USA), Nils Hint (Estonia), Bridgette Shepherd (Australia) etc.

The works of art are very diverse in style, in selection of materials and their concord, in techniques, and in presentation. Some are spatial, and some resemble gadgets or miniature furniture, others look like rather usual jewelry or conceptual objects. All of them present broad panorama of contemporary metal art. In this panorama the view supplements the word and vice versa, for sometimes the word provides an opportunity to take more profound and different look at the work of art. In a sense, these are nearly intimate metal stories of the artists about what happens when working with metal. The stories also reveal their standpoint about metal. After all, the stories explain why they chose metal and what this material means to them.

This material means a lot for the second METALLOphone. To be more precise, it means everything.


PhD. Jurgita Ludavičienė