Mykolė Ganusauskaitė (b. 1985) studied at the Vilnius Academy of Art and the National School of Fine Arts in Paris (École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts), where she obtained the bachelor’s and master’s degrees. She held several solo exhibitions in Lithuania and France, and participated in group exhibitions in Lithuania, France and Denmark. She is a finalist (2011) and the winner (2013) of the competition “Young Painter’s Prize”.
The dominant genre in Ganusauskaitė’s work is landscape. The choice of the genre distinguishes her among the young generation of Lithuanian painters who most often tend to figurative painting, quite often with a clear social and political motivation. Landscape is often related with nature studies or romantic and idealised views of the homeland fields. However, Ganusauskaitė’s work confirms that the contemporary landscape genre is quite in touch with the newest art tendencies and can be interesting and relevant today.
The painter chooses simple and easily recognisable motifs: details of a landscape with occasionally appearing buildings, engineering constructions, or solitary human figures. She represents different times of the year and the day, different weather conditions and the range of colours characteristic of the landscape at a given time. In her stylised and generalised landscapes the painter enjoys a large variety of colours and structures and emphasises the rhythm of natural elements. By inserting architectural objects or other signs of human activity into her paintings, she discovers harmony in the contrasts of strict and free forms (for example, the rhythm of a ploughed field and tree branches). Ganusauskaitė uses one-layer painting, and her works seem light and transparent. Canvas showing through a thin layer of paint adds some atmospheric shimmer to the paintings.
Landscapes of Lithuania emerged in Ganusauskaitė’s work while she was studying in Paris as an expression of memories of the time spent in Lithuania or longing for her homeland. The artist depicts actual locations that she has visited and holds important. She is looking for a balance to the dynamics and noise of the city in nature. Her landscapes are empty and spacious, and predispose the viewer to meditation. Melancholic and lyrical moods that can often be felt in her paintings supplement the autobiographical history of the appearance of landscapes. Thus, although being real, they also become inner psychological landscapes – places that are consciously and subconsciously experienced inside oneself. Geometrised and flattened forms of the views of nature seem reminiscent of set design, and look like a theatre set in which a scene from a nostalgic dream is played.