From the 19th of April till the 26th of May two Lithuanian sculptors Nerijus Erminas and Andrius Erminas will present their artworks in Berlin at ROCKELMANN& gallery (Schönleinstraße 5, 10967 Berlin).

The title “The Cabinet of Mary Magdalene. Mutations” refers to Nerijus Erminas and Andrius Erminas installations presented at the exhibition. Both artists in their works use references taken from culture, religion and everyday life. They transform it into imaginative, surreal story where the visitor is invited to read multipal symbolic language. The exhibition represent one of the most characteristic works by the artists where a number of collective and individual experiences merge together.

Nerijus Erminas will show “The Cabinet of Mary Magdalene” which refers to the Biblical story about the sinful woman who became Christ’s follower, accompanied and ministered to him and whose role in the Bible has been subject to infinite controversial interpretations. Even though the main character of Mary Magdalene is taken from the Bible, the concept of the work is not restricted exclusively to one particular religion. Artist emphasizes the importance of faith overall, especially nowadays when the change of values and certain instability are noticeable. By using an iconic symbols from the Catholicism artist employs these images as a culturally recognisible elements which even become a part of a pop culture. The artist sees the character of Mary Magdalene as a multi-layered metaphor of spirituality, faith and devotion perceived in a variety of ways ranging from genuine (self-)reflection, identification and fetishizing to irony and criticism. Objects of different materials, purposes and content are arranged following the principle similar to that of creating scenography. Each object is individual on its own, but in the context of other items each of them acts as an active participant and a reference creating a certain joint message or story.

Andrius Erminas at the exhibition will present his ongoing project “Mutations” where he creates multi-layered sculptural compositions that unravel the complexities and paradoxes that exist in the relationship between human culture and the natural world. Erminas speaks in metaphors, referencing diverse cultures, history, religion and myth, to transform the everyday, using both natural and man-made objects to create new and personal narratives. Self-portrayal, philosophical reflections and contemporary cultural references are interwoven in his sculptural objects and installations. The objects are transformed not only physically but also emotionally and symbolically. All of his objects have undergone profound mutations: he has brought together the whole sweep of history, art and culture and involved the audience in a game without clear boundaries and rules. The array of diverse elements he has marshalled together are constantly shifting between their original status and the new meanings, associations and characteristics given to them. Erminas encourages the viewer to look at the myriad interconnections between the objects that surround us every day, and to look for the boundaries between what is real and what is a fiction created by art.

Nerijus Erminas (1976) is a Lithuanian conceptual artist, graduated with master’s degree in sculpture from the Vilnius Academy of Arts. The artist has had over fourteen personal shows in Lithuania, and actively participates in group exhibitions in China, USA, Denmark, Italy, Germany, etc. He was awarded scholarship for creators of art and culture by Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania in 2012 and 2016. In 2010, Erminas won an award for the most prominent sculptural object in the Sculpture of the Year 2009 competition. He was awarded a jury prize for the best presentation of sculpture Squirrel and Wall presented by (AV17) gallery at the contemporary art fair ArtVilnius’12. Erminas artworks are included in the permanent collection of MO museum in Vilnius, Lithuania.

Andrius Erminas (b. 1971) is a sculpture, object and installation artist, who lives and works in Vilnius. Artist has graduated studies in fresco-mosaic and sculpture at Vilnius Academy of Arts. He actively participates in various group, solo-exhibitions and art projects in Israel, UK, Germany, Denmark, Ukraine and others. In 2012 and 2015 Andrius Erminas was awarded Lithuanian State Scholarship for Culture and Art creators. His works are included in the permanent collection of MO museum in Vilnius, Lithuania.

Exhibition “The Cabinet of Mary Magdalene. Mutations” is part of an ongoing collaboration project between ROCKELMANN& (Berlin, Germany) and AV17 gallery (Vilnius, Lithuania). The exchange project started in March 2018 with the exhibition “Object evolution” in Vilnius showing works of the German artists Yamsin Alt and Kai Franz.

The exhibition is supported by the Lithuanian Council for Culture.