Kotryna Mauragytė and Eva Rodz are newcomer artists from Lithuania, both currently studying at Vilnius Academy of Arts. Though the two of them are first-years, they’ve got a lot to offer to this world.
On the 1ˢᵗ of April they released their photography project, called I Can Hear You Well, but I See You Badly. It’s a series of photographs, representing one’s isolation and imprisonment right now.
FIND EVA & KOTRYNA’S PROJECT HERE
Fortunately, I’ve got the opportunity to ask them a few questions and get to know what this is actually all about.
What is the purpose of this project? What are you trying to say or even achieve?
EVA: The main purpose is to show that you can create art in hard situations like now, that you can find solutions.
KOTRYNA: It seemed like just a fun idea to somehow diversify life during the quarantine. We all feel somehow imprisoned and we communicate, if we do that at all, only by using technology. We wanted to show that creativity never stops, and such imprisonment forces us to look for ways to express creativity.
Eva, how did you come up with the idea? Was it something that you’ve been developing for quite some time or did it just pop into your head and you decided to act on it?
EVA: The idea isn’t new. My friend Marta has done something similar with one guy and I just saw it on Instagram. The difference between our project and theirs is that they had done it like a joke — I didn’t see any results, only process. But I need to admit that they have inspired me to try it.
Since it’s a photography project, tell me about the photographs. One of them is in full colours, while the others are black and white. Why is that?
KOTRYNA: I really like monochrome photography, so it’s no surprise that I applied my style to the photos. I’ve always had the opinion that black and white photos bring more spirit, or maybe it’s just a personal thing. The coloured photograph shows a bit of burnout from technology. Eva is photographed as covered in flames, and the computer screen is perfectly visible.
I’ve read that one of you tried taking pictures while posing through a window after having taken her laptop outside. What other unconventional and interesting settings or compositions did you use?
KOTRYNA: We used various glasses to extract an intricate effect. The black and white photo, where only the lips and my camera lens can be seen, is exactly this test. A bottle of water through which I photographed Eva also came to my aid.
According to Kotryna’s Facebook post, the two of you executed this with the help of modern technology. Could you tell me what issues did you encounter while working on this?
EVA: The main issue was poor internet connection. It was really hard to understand what’s going on, I needed to sit in one position uncomfortably for minutes.
KOTRYNA: It is not always possible to rely on technology 100 per cent. We encountered sound interference, and the screen sometimes broke. The quality wasn’t always what I expected when shooting, but it came out good, we didn’t try to do everything perfectly and vividly.
Was there a time when you wanted to just give up?
EVA: We didn’t even think about it while we were working together. The whole process wasn’t about stress or negative feelings, it was about (having) fun.
KOTRYNA: We felt like something was going to come out anyway, so we just did it and we were happy with the results.
How was like working as a team instead of being on your own?
EVA: I am really communicative and the most pleasant work method for me is to work in a group with people who really understand my ideas and will be with me until the end, no matter what. I hate this individualism thing. It is really important to help people and give them that moment to shine, show them that they are really talented and they can do more than they think they can.
What was the trickiest part of trying to find the middle ground with someone who might have radically different ideas than yours? Or did you two agree on everything easily and didn’t have any issues?
KOTRYNA: Our opinions went together almost identically. We complemented each other, there was no anger or other disruption. We both broke our heads over the name of the project, we both wrote and edited the text, it was a real team work.
In the midst of cancellations and reschedulings, Eva and Kotryna seem to have found their own silver lining. It’s truly an incredible thing that even the biggest of pandemics don’t stop creative minds.
I’d say it’s quite obvious that both girls know how to think outside the box and use whatever obstacle they face to their own advantage. I’m super excited to see what they come up with in the future.
Don’t hesitate to continue their artistic journey from now on. If you ever need a photographer for your idea, or someone to help you out with making motion pictures, I’m sure Eva and Kotryna would be more than just happy to help you out. They can do it all.