Publishing a Book is Due When Half of Life Is Behind You!


  • Marta Vosyliūtė



creator‘s voice, artist‘s book, non-writing, swan‘s song, context, power


The text analyses the specific forms and channels of artwork development, namely, it looks into the storytelling potential of the physical space (the closedness of interiors and openness of exteriors), the digital space, and the space of paper publication. While respecing the artistic freedom, the paper stresses the importance of the permanently changing context, although even the most recognised art professionals can forget that, which often produces a comical effect. The research involves some seemingly unrelated topics and a few concrete objects: 1. artwork distribution, 2. the entrenchment of architects in the fabric of exhibition, 3. unseen contexts, and 4. the analysis/slam of exhibition titles from a particular historical period. The paper uses the comparative method that is rich both with refe- rences and personal remarks, and its style is close to that of a writer-artist rather than an academic. It aims to show the artworld as being slightly rough-around-the-edges, governed by distinct sources of power, and rich with absurdity. The research also uses dedicated illustrations to comment on the topical issues and various tragicomical situations related to them. Along with its visual component, irony temporarily relieves us of tensions and enriches the text companion.

The research method is based on the practice of observation of the art field, and the analysis of its exhibition spaces along with individual artists, publishing platforms, and their intersections in the art critical publications, conferences and the internet. The paper tries to study the role of the new participants, specifically exhibition architects, in the exhibition context, while subjectively highlighting both successful and unsuccessful examples. The third part presents the analysis as a clash between randomly picked material (e.g., exhibition titles) on the one hand, and the material of a distinctly different genre (e.g., slam comments) on the other, thus deliberately rejecting the entire sociology of art. Because, when preparing to their exhibitions, artists fall prey to various word games when coming up with their project titles, and end up being torn between family, friends, art theorists and art centre directors on the one hand, and their intimate desire to express themselves on the other. This is also why the third part comes without any conclusions.

The author is happy to live in such a structurally obscure environment (what’s the difference whether you’re self-taught or you’ve got a degree in art management; after all, life is but collection of exceptions), as long as one has the power of an individual voice. The author is but a text, while the polyphony of other people, historical events and texts is but a context, and the latter is always bigger than the former.

The voice, in which we tell our stories of art, will be most successful not only when it is unique, but also when it comes out as a scream. One is thus bound to scream loudly and end one’s life with a book.

Author Biography

Marta Vosyliūtė

studied in M.K.Čiurlionis Art School, Vilnius, graduated from the Scenography studies in Vilnius Academy of Arts (BA in 1999, MA in 2001, further postgraduate courses in 2006). Works as a scenographer, makes paintings, drawings and films, participates in exhibitions and writes texts on culture. Vosyliūtė is particularly interested in non-traditional spaces. She has created scenographies and costumes for thirty stage plays, showcased her work in ten solo shows, and participated in multiple group exhibitions. Among her latest solo shows: “Second Hand Culture in Lithuania” (2017), “Mine, Not Yours” (2015), and “The Sect” (2010). 

More info:; Publishes videos on YouTube as herself.

Reproduction of page spread from Jacques Derrida’s book Glas (1986), as used in Arnas Anskaitis doctoral art project-dissertation Knowledge That Artist Has at Their Disposal: Seven Trace-Maps, 2021, photo by the artist

Additional Files



How to Cite

Vosyliūtė , M. (2022). Publishing a Book is Due When Half of Life Is Behind You!. Acta Academiae Artium Vilnensis, (107), 324–345.