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© 2018 by Živilė Kasparavičiūtė

  • Živilė

Mask off the Dark, Yet Genuine Side of Personality


After the turbulent year of 2018, I had taken a look at my most recent paintings and started to ask myself: why have I lately been focusing on the dark side of humanity when searching for inspiration? One might wonder if I'm full of inexhaustible darkness myself.


Does negativity drive my creative practice? It might... For a certain reason.


The fact is my art isn't a mere visual diary of my personal experiences. As a comparison, Alfred Hitchcock wasn’t a killer in spite of his thrillers, was he? My art subject derives from collective emotions, noticed in people that I meet, absorbed from traditional and social media, from the ordinary details of life, and, of course, self-reflection, which leads me to question asking. My art subject is a puzzle, of which pieces a taken from various spheres of life, never focused on a sole person, in spite of the viewer's attempt to think so.

So, why have I been tripping on the dark side of a human-being? It's alluring, suggesting answers to the questions we ask ourselves, however often concealed behind well-polished social masks or perfected images of celebrity culture.


Our visible, public every day activities, routine, behaviours, expressed opinions are only the surface of who we really are and I, as an artist, am interested in exposing the side of a human-being that is more vulnerable and judged. It's unfashionable to focus on the negative side these days, however, it's within us whether we admit it or not.

Detail of my painting "Mask Off" (2018)

When I looked back, I noticed patterns of behaviour of people that break down and struggle in their heads, even if they come across as strong, positive, unbeatable and sure of their ways. I absorb such emotions deeply and find it difficult to overcome them or be of sufficient help as I'm often busy picking up my broken pieces or occupied asking existential questions.

Sooner or later we get to see each other's dark sides, if we dare to observe. Are they shameful? No, I think they are human. Something we should be accepting instead of hiding under the layers of bubbly, positive, perfected personalities. They are something we should be learning from and fixing if it stops us from living our lives, filled with endless shades of colours, not black or white masks.