NUNU was a special project connecting the Holy Trinity of poets – Gabrielė Labanauskaitė, Žygimantas Mesijus Kudirka and Darius Zaizras Jurevičius. They aimed to perform poetry in the most innovative ways possible. During a performance selected pieces of poetry were being conducted, projected and performed live in various voices and tones.
NUNU served as an impulse for a dialogue between the poetry and its delivery to the audiences. This project combined the ideas of three different performers, who delivered them in the creative variations of sounds, visuals and gestures.
There is a billion ways to write a poem, but when three artists start working on one poem, the real challenge begins. All the performed verses were a result of the fusion among project members. At the beginning of each meeting a group would sit, choose a topic and write using effective methods of creative writing. They harnessed the principles of surreal and automatic writing that helped the group to come up with the postmodern and intensive creative work.
Instead of music poets were using documentary-style visuals. These visuals portrayed the real people in the streets, who were trying to conduct the rhythm and the feeling of a particular poem. But it was no ordinary conduction: the group decided to forget everything they had ever known about the conducting and devised an innovative technique of conducting.. poetry. Three of them came up with a special code consisting of a dozen particular signs, giving the special effect to the narrative of the poem.
Is it still hard to imagine this creative process? Please, take a look at this live video of NUNU performance in Tartu, Estonia!
AVaspo was a band performing audio-visual poetry. It highly promoted and contributed to the development of the experimental music concept in Lithuania. This group had remained on stage from 2009 to 2016, all of band’s members were also active participants of the local and international art community. This talented audio-visual collective managed to translate the visions and dreams of its leader – poet and playwright, Gabrielė Labanauskaitė into the vivid flow of sounds and images. Magic of audio-visual technologies and professionalism helped to fuse the intriguing talents of the new generation composers, multi-instrumentalists and video artists.
AVaspo stood for the modern poetry and put all the effort to popularize it both in Lithuania and Europe. As a band it had always been in transformation, constantly experimenting. The axis of the creative content was the mystic, psychedelic, philosophic and even grotesque lyrics of Gabriele Labanauskaite. It cultivated the improvisation and was complementedwith the sounds and visuals.
As in the Mayan calendar, the years gone by
Add up to zero
Signifying nothing more than an empty shell.
Is equally insignificant
Or the same fulfillment –
Depends on how you look at it.
(poem “In the Mayan Calendar”)
AVaspo music did not receive much sympathy from the critics at first. Lithuanian music observer Goda Raibytė confessed that a listener of such music must be mature enough: “Taming the music of AVASPO equals to taming a wild beast – one has to do it carefully, with love and attention even to the slightest detail. Everything is important in this kind of music: it offers plenty of surprise, it does not have a plan to follow, but ensures an uncontrollable aesthetic experience….”
Eventually, AVaspo found its target audience and discovered the way to the very soul of it. In 2013 a band was awarded as “The Best Experimental Music Group of 2012” at the national level.
Members of AVaspo were always open to any kind of novelty and experiments. They even performed at the obscure locations: they employed the atypicality of any place to make it a puzzle, a teaser, a creative challenge. Their shows were known to balance on the edge of a performance and a concert. Shows playfully touched the topics of the interpersonal and public misunderstandings, war and peace, visual culture and the triumph of the mass media, love and tolerance. The band brought the variety of modern poetry forms to the spotlight, gathered the artists of different disciples to work together and established a relationship with the foreign artists. One of the most distinguished accomplishments of AVaspo was the primary idea and organization of the annual interdisciplinary art festival “TARP”.
💿20133rd album CD “OCEAN IS BLEEDING”. New album tour in Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda and Šiauliai.
💿20102nd album “NIAGARA”. New album tour in Iceland, Austria, Germany, Czech Republic, Lithuania and a show at Contemporary Art Festival “Virus” in Šiauliai, Lithuania.
💿20091st album CD “THERE IS NO OCEAN”. New album show in Vilnius and at the International Experimental Music Festival “SKIF” in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
🏆2013“The Best Experimental Music Band of 2012”, National Alternative Music Awards “T.E.T.E”, Vilnius, Lithuania.
2016Premiere of the poetry and dance performance TOWERS OF MELANCHOLY with the dance theatre “Airos” (director: Aira Naginevičiūtė) at the theatre “Menų spaustuvė” in Vilnius and the National Kaunas Drama theatre, Lithuania
2014Premiere of poetry and music performance GONDII SYNDROME (director Saulė Norkutė) at Kirtimai Cultural Center, Vilnius, Lithuania
2013Premiere of music and dance performance “Recycling Rituals” together with the International Interdisciplinary project at the culture bar “Kablys”, Culture Night Festival, Vilnius, Lithuania
2011Performance/concert/art installation “De Solitude” with the director of experimental cinema Nicolas Perge and video artist Raphael Dupont at Culture Night Festival in Vilnius, Lithuania.
They said: walk with a spring in your step – girls walk lightly with a smile,
They said: no one dresses like that – this skirt is too short,
They said: no one dresses like that – this skirt is too long,
They said: sky-blue panty hose only fit with sky-blue clothes, red – with red,
Home Control assiduously inspected even the color’s shades.
They said: stop eating, you’ll be like a cow
[I often gazed at cows. Conclusion:
no similarity. Cows are very pretty.]
They said: eat, otherwise you won’t be able to have children – you master of the fast.
They said: but if you want children, you can have them without men, children don’t
[Nor men – children, was my conclusion,
according to this logic. QED.]
They said: live how you want, you know what you’re doing – everything was said
Playing handball – a boy’s game,
Hockey – a boy’s game,
Swimming – a game without gender, but revealing it.
After that, they said: girl’s don’t fight – when I kicked a classmate in the nose
Who decided to cop a feel of my burgeoning breasts,
They said: I wouldn’t want such a daughter, so help me God –
When they found a bag of peas in my backpack, though I battled with the boys
Who would have been, we should understand, fitting sons;
They told my mom: she’ll grow up a lesbian, look what she does with those girls
In that room, pretending to play doctor;
They said: everything outside the norms is a perversion,
They said: even the neighbor fixed herself, from a tomboy to a taxi driver, in
They said: don’t talk to the other neighbor who is always trying
To fly like a bird from her balcony, and one time she succeeded,
They said: you goat, you can’t drive, and then they said: for a girl, you drive well;
They said: do what you know best, though they didn’t think I knew anything.
They said: “NO” so many times for so long and so persistently
That I became the girl in the tower of glass, lulled by rosy illusions,
An obedient, deafened girl, layed out in the coffin of the beauty myth.
But one day, I woke up – kissed by feminism’s frog.
I woke up and said: you can all just fuck off!
Translation by Rimas Uzgiris of a poem „Pabudimas“ by Gabrielė Labanauskaitė
We have never sailed on the lake, river or floated on top of the Dead sea.
We have never been at a concert, cinema or exhibition together.
We have never said to each other: look, this is a genius picture!
We have never climbed on the top of the roof or mountain.
We have never gone around the world in the same boat.
We have never given flowers to each other or presents.
We have never felt how it’s to move on the same dance floor.
We have never licked melting ice cream together.
We have never asked much about the roots of each other.
We have never combed each other’s hair, gently and slowly.
We have never felt Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday together.
We have never worked together, fighting with passion.
We have never been skating, skiing, running, long walking together.
We have never got lost in the forest or in the parking lot under a shopping mall.
We have never gone hunting, shooting, fishing or picking up berries.
We have never made food, coffee or tea or some other disaster.
We have never played cards or lost our last money at the casino.
We have never smoked weed, gone high with all other good or bad stuff.
We have never got dizzy, drunk or lost in the labyrinths of consciousness.
We have never called each other by phone.
We don’t even have each others’ telephone number.
So why do I feel knowing you so well?
Why do we feel knowing each other more than
thousands of years?
We have dived in each others’ bodies, sunbathing in each others’ heat.
We have been drawing inner maps, routes and movements.
We have seen so many pictures of moons and red sunsets.
We have climbed into each other, slipping down and starting again.
We have built a world within a world, it’s spinning in us and around us.
We have painted blue flowers on each others’ bodies.
We danced on the red bed sheet as bull and toreador changing our roles,
Dying, resurrecting, fainting again and again.
We have melted into each others’ palms, becoming teenagers.
We have common roots, past lives and some secret knowledge.
We have stroked each others’ hair with finger combs and shower brush.
We have felt Monday, Friday, Saturday and two Sundays together.
We inspired each other, weaving the carpets of words, everyday longer and bigger.
We went into the curious, spoiled, ambitious, creative, iching territories.
We got lost in each others’ forests and none of us wanted to be found.
We have gone smiling, laughing, kissing, touching and picking up pleasure berries.
We drank water, milkshakes, prosecco and some other bubbles of happiness.
We played distances and proximities, opening cards to each other
and hiding again.
We smoked each others’ lungs, went high by elevators under the ribs.
We got intoxicated and lost in the labyrinths of unconsciousness.
We know each other’s name. We know it by heart. We know, how to write it, to spell
it, to hear it, to swallow it.
It’s tattooed on each other’s skin.
It’s called: my insomnia.
When I met you, a red silk evil obsessed me.
He told me: it’s nice, but paradise apples gonna melt
As soon, as you taste it.
He told me, it’s too nice – this beauty will cost you
He told me, kick her, bite her, run away from her, beat her, smash her,
Provoke, pretend, don’t give up, offence is defence.
He told me, play, enjoy, the goal is the process.
He told me, even if you fall down, all wounds will be healed.
He told me, I am the red silk, everyone will slide down me,
I’ll stay untouched.
When I got angry at you, thinking that you wanted to run away earlier,
Evil put a red lipstick into one hand, that you wouldn’t be touching my lips
And into another hand he put a toothbrush – just in case, if I would like
To stab you next morning.
When you have left, red evil lighted a chocolate cigarillo with his one hand and
poured wine into the glass with another.
Oh, this red silk evil!
Oh, this red silk evil, who obsessed me after I’ve met you.
Oh, this red silk evil, who obsessed me before I’ve met you!
The wolves are the wolves are the wolves and a rose.
The rose is the rose is the rose and a fire.
The fire is the fire is the fire and a body.
The body is the body is the body and a shame.
The shame is the shame is the shame and a house.
The house is the house is the house and an end.
The end is the end is the end and a choice.
The choice is the choice is the choice and a female.
The female is the female is the female and the drums.
The drums are the drums are the drums and a wolf.
The wolf is the wolf is the wolf and a vulva.
The vulva is the vulva is the vulva and a poetess.
The poetess is a poetess is a poetess is a poetess and has no gender.
No gender is no gender is no gender and no body.
No body is no body is no body and no shame.
No shame is no shame and no shame and no drums.
No drums are no drums are no drums and no fire.
No fire is no fire is no fire and no rose.
No rose is no poetry.
No poetry is no wolf.
No wolf is no end.
No end is no.