Sunday, 24 February 2013

Academic Scouts Adelaide Chapter

Akademinis Skautų Sajudis, Adelaidės Skyrius (ASS)
Student Corp “Vytis”

ASS was established in October 16, 1924, at Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas. This was the first university-level scout organization.  A member was required to hold a university degree but otherwise carried out scouting activities like any other scout.  The Corp’s motto is "Ad Meliorem" an old saying in Latin, "ad meliorem vertamur". This can be translated to "improve, let's do better!".

The Corps has its own band colour, blue for the sky, meaning dignity,  yellow - the colour of gold, meaning chivalry, purple  for rocks, which means strength.  The band is worn over the right shoulder, blue on top.  The logo depicts a golden lily, blue diamond, worn on the left lapel.

The criteria for membership was; you must be a scout, you must hold a higher degree and be nominated by two members.

Adelaide Chapter of the Academic scouts association was established in 28 May 1950, primarily on the initiative of Vaclovas (Vacys) Ilgūnas.  Vacys had been an Academic scout, and talking to another former scout, Mockūnienė, thought a reunion of Academic scouts was in order.  This turned out to be the formation of the only branch of Lithuanian Academic scouts in Australia.  The first committee comprised of;

President:         Vacys Ilgūnas
Vice-President: Bronė Mockūnienė
Members:         Tadas Žurauskas, Jonas Vildžius

By the end of 1950, the Adelaide chapter had 18 members.  The chapter was active for well over 30 years.  The total number reached was 22.

The scouts organised outings, picnics, lotteries.  The guides visited the sick in hospital, in particular psychiatric hospital.  They met regularly and held an annual outing.  They celebrated their patrons, St Casmir and St George and had a series of lectures on various topics, presented by their own members or invited speakers. 

The cop instigated a literature competition with a $500 prize. Numbers declined as people emigrated from Australia to the USA, a tragic death of a prominent member Jurgis Naujalis occurred.

On November 10th 1974, celebrations of 50 years of Academic Scouts was held at Lithuanian House.
Rūta Bielskytė                            1975
t.n                      Laisvė Daugalienė                     1981
fil. Ps.                Česlovas Dubinskas                   1975 - 1981     
fil. S.                  Vaclovas Ilgūnas                        1950 - 1981
fil. Ps. Dr.          Janina Maželienė                       1950 - 1981
fil. Ps.                Jonas Mikužis                             1975
                           Birutė Mikužienė                        1975
fil. Ps.                Jonas Mockūnas                        1975 - 1981
                           Brone Mockūnienė                    1975 – 1981
                           Jurgis Naujalis
fil. V.s.               Vytautas Neverauskas              1975 - 1981
fil.                      Vytas P Neverauskas                 1975 - 1981
                           Stasė Pacevičienė                      1975 - 1981
fil. Dr.                Nemira Ratkevičienė                1975 - 1981
senj.                   Viktoras Ratkevičius                  1975 - 1981
                           Auksė Stankevičienė                 1975
t.n                      Genė Striaukienė                       1975 – 1981
                           Jonas Vildžius                             1950
fil.                      Alfredas Vitkūnas                       1975 - 1981
fil.                      Tadas Žurauskas                        1950 - 1981

The years are not an indication of their time in the Corps.  It is from two main lists one from 1975 and one 1981.

Seniors Oath
Valuing your honour, I promise to be faithful to God, the Almighty Creator of the world, which is the highest truth, beauty and goodness are the source of my beginning and end;

I promise
To be true to suffering mother Lithuania, working for her freedom and well-being wherever  I am, full of spirit and body, sacrificing their life, including administering the remedy to their national solidarity and love for everyone in Lithuania;

I promise
To serve one's neighbour, in accordance with the principles of love Christianity;

I promise
Be faithful to the Corp’s discipline and traditions and to maintain fraternal relations among members of the Corp now and in the future.

God, help me.

Monday, 18 February 2013

How Rukstele sees Australia


Anthony Rūkštelė, a new Australian who has formerly exhibited in several 'mixed' shows in Adelaide, now has a one-man exhibition of his water colours at Curzon Gallery, Gawler place.

It is chiefly interesting as an example of how one European reacts to the' Australian light and scene and his subjects, mostly of places in and round Adelaide and a few in Sydney, make easy one's assessment of Rūkštelė’s first impressions of his adopted country.

He has recorded them with a strictly matter-of-fact approach, as though feeling his way into the new and strange conditions.   Further familiarity with them will no doubt afford enhanced perception and greater facility of expression.  
The most successful of the local subjects are 'Preparing for the Race' and 'Kingston Park Beach.' There are others of King William street, St. Peter's Cathedral, and the City Bridge.  
Several European studies give a truer idea of Rūkštelė talent, as, for example, 'Bavarian Landscape' and a street in Dillingen (uncatalogued).  
The pictures will be on view until March 28. — Esmond George.  

The Advertiser Saturday May 18th 1950    

The Governor viewed the exhibition.

“Refugees’ hangs in the entrance foyer to Lithuanian house in Adelaide.
 The family departed Australia on 3 June 1955 for America, where they remained. 

Antanas married Elena born 29 October 1906 died 20 April 1988 in California.  Elena was a singer and gave numerous performances while in Adelaide.  On one occasion she sang French songs for the Françoise Alliance.

1. Raminta Marija born 18 July 1935 in Kaunas.  Attended St Dominic’s Priory school.
2. Egle born 1 Feb 1939 in Kaunas. Attended St Dominic’s Priory school.
3. Saulius born 26 March 1941

Zarasai Library website
Family Search z/.../litevske-uprchlicke-tabory-taborova-platidla-cast-druha
National Archives of Australia
Lithuanian Artists in Australia 1950 – 1990 by Genovaite Kazokas
TROVE website

Friday, 15 February 2013

Antanas Rukstele artist. Exhibition review

Pleasing Art Exhibition by New Australian
The exhibition of watercolours by Anthony Rūkštelė, to be opened this afternoon by Mrs. T. Slaney Poole at the Curzon Gallery, will confirm the widely expressed opinion that the influx of New Australians from Eastern Europe will prove to be a valuable asset in the cultural life of this State.

Anthony Rūkštelė hails from Kaunas, Lithuania, where he was an art teacher in the National Museum. Although he has only been here for something less than a year he has already assimilated the Australian atmosphere and bids fair to becoming a leading artist.

He has the true artist's eye for beauty, and his subjects in both oils and watercolours are selected with confidence and experience. His work is clean, and decisive, restrained where necessary, and always delightful in composition and colour.  Though the exhibition under review is confined to watercolours, he is equally good in oils and more in this medium will no doubt be seen at some future date.

Though many of the seascapes and landscapes portray familiar scenes in and around Adelaide, patrons will probably see fresh beauties in these.  By reason of the smoothness and softness with which they are handled.

'In the South Parklands' is nice composition and has pleasing colour tone in the well-modelled trees.  'Kingston Park' is another delightful colour study, with its wide sands, and a quiet sea, and a few figures carefully introduced.

Views of 'Adelaide Town Hall.' 'St. Peters Cathedral.' and 'City Bridge' are correctly draughted, and true to colour suggestions and detail.  'King William Street.' is also an at tractive scene.
A group in 'Children' is natural, and picturesque, and both foreground and background help the general effect. The beauties of Sydney Harbour have evidently appealed very strongly to this artist, and 'Afternoon in Sydney Harbor,' and 'Manly Beach. Sydney.' are among some of the best on the walls.

Rūkštelė has also included some exquisite scenes of home spots. 'Valley in the Bavarian Alps' and 'Late Chiemsee' are particularly attractive, the blue shades in the Alps expressing the cold atmosphere being most realistic.

Rūkštelė shows his versatility in several figure subjects, both nude and clothed, and these have been care fully modelled, and due attention, given to flesh tints.  In 'The Violinist.' the concentration of the musician is particularly well-expressed.

Art lovers will find a lot to admire in this exhibition, which will be open until March 28.

The Advertiser, Wednesday 15 March 1950

Monday, 11 February 2013

Antanas Rukstele - Artist

Antanas Rukstele

Born 22 October 1906 in Degučiai, Zarasai district, Lithuania.  
Died 5th October 1990 California, USA.

Painter, art historian,ethnographer and founder of an art school in Germany. President of the Adelaide Lithuanian Community Council 1950-52.

In 1928 he finished school in Kaunas. In 1929 he graduated from Kaunas Art School. Later he studied painting privately with J. Kalpokas and J. Mackevičių.  Between 1928 - 1929 he studied Advanced information technologies. Between 1926 - 1936 studied history and philosophy at Kaunas‘ Vytautas Magnus University. In 1934 he receives Swedish Baltic Institute (Stockholm), scholarship, graduated in ethnology and museology courses. 1926 to 1936, was MK Čiurlionis gallery and museum curator. Between 1936 - 1944 he was Vytautas the Great Museum of Culture board member of the Lithuanian National History Museum instructor.

Antanas with his wife Elena and three children fled the Soviet occupiers of Lithuania and made their way to Germany.  Two years later he established an art school in Dillingen refugee camp and was its Director and teacher until 1949.

The Lithuanian camp in Ludwig was part of Dillingen UNRRA field team 308th.  Antanas designed the money for the Ludwig's camp.  Tender was issued in two copies on white paper, and the other on light purple paper. Tender was issued with a value of 1, 2, 5, 10 and 50 units (units).

The design is based on the Lithuanian tulip motif, which together with UNRRA sign, is printed in green ink. Text and numbers are printed in red.  All the tender have the same design on the obverse is the inscription LITHUANIAN CENTER DP LUDWIG Dillingen / UNRRA UNITS / TEAM 308th.

He and his family left Germany bound for Australia on the ship Oxfordshire arriving on the 25th May 1949.  They were transferred to Woodside migrant camp in the Adelaide hills.  It was here  he held his first solo exhibition of watercolours in Australia, most of which he had painted in Germany.

Antanas held a number of solo exhibitions in Australia, in 1950, 1952, 1953, in Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne. 

His first solo exhibition was held in March 1950 in the Curzon Gallery in Gawler Place.  It was reviewed several times in the local newspaper.

'A new Australian's impressions of his new country will be given in an exhibition of water colours by Antanas Rūkštelė, opening at the Curzon theatrette, Gawler place, tomorrow.
Rūkštelė, who is a Lithuanian, is the first migrant to give his own art exhibition in this State.

Rūkštelė’s exhibition will mainly consist of South Australian scenes and pictures painted of the Danube and the Bavarian Alps during his five years in Germany. '

More to follow...

Thursday, 7 February 2013

St George & St Anthony

Šv Jurgis

Saint George (c. 275/281 – 23 April 303) was a Greek who became an officer in the Roman army. He became an officer in the Roman army in the Guard of Diocletian. He is venerated as a Christian martyr.  Saint George is one of the most venerated saints in the Catholic , Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, and the Oriental Orthodox churches. He is immortalized in the tale of Saint George and the Dragon and is one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers. His memorial is celebrated on 23 April, and he is regarded as one of the most prominent military saints.

In memory of her husband, B. Zilinskiene. 1974

Šv Antano vitražas.
St Anthony of Padua (1195-1231), the most celebrated of the followers of Saint Francis of Assisi, was born at Lisbon on the 15th of August 1195. In his fifteenth year he entered the Augustinian order, and subsequently joined the Franciscans in 1220. He wished to devote himself to missionary labours in North Africa, but the ship in which he sailed was cast by a storm on the coast of Sicily, whence he made his way to Italy. He taught theology at Bologna, Toulouse, Montpellier and Padua, and won a great reputation as a preacher throughout Italy. He was the leader of the rigorous party in the Franciscan order against the mitigations introduced by the general Elias. His death took place at the convent of Ara Coeli, near Padua, on the 13th of June 1231. He was canonized by Gregory IX. in the following year, and his festival is kept on the 13th of June.

St Anthony is often portrayed meditating on an open book in which the Christ Child himself appears. Over time the child came to be shown considerably larger than the book and some images even do without the book entirely.

St Anthony is venerated all over the world as the Patron Saint for lost articles, and is credited with many miracles involving lost people, lost things and even lost spiritual goods.

Consecrated September 1974.  Last of the windows.

Monday, 4 February 2013

Suvalkija stained glass window

Suvalkiečių vitražas. Marijampolės bažnyčia. Dievo Tarnas arkiv. J. Matulaitis.
Paiminklas Rainių miškelio kaniniams. Rimšos vargo mokyklą.

Suvalkietis region stained glass.  Marijampole church and J. Matulaitis.

Suvalkija is the smallest of the five cultural regions of Lithuania. Its unofficial capital is Marijampolė.

Jurgis Matulaitis, born 13 April 1871 in the village of Lūginė, near Marijampolė, was a Roman Catholic Bishop of Vilnius from 1918 to 1925 and founder of the Sisters of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. On 28 June 1987, Pope John Paul II beatified him as the Blessed Jurgis Matulaitis.

Petras Rimša (November 3, 1881 in Naudžiai, Vilkaviškis district (Suvalkija) – October 2, 1961 in Kaunas) was one of the first professional Lithuanian sculptors and medalists.
Rimša's early works are highly patriotic and realistic. His early work The Lithuanian School (Lietuvos mokykla also Vargo mokykla) depicts a mother teaching her child to read in his native Lithuanian language in between her yarn spinning. This has become a symbol of the Lithuanian resistance to the Lithuanian press ban (1864–1904) and was featured on the 5 litas banknote. It was inspired by his personal childhood education and experiences of his book smuggler brother.

At the bottom is written; Dieve grąžink laisvę kenčiančiai tautai. Suvalkiečiai 1972
God, Free the suffering nation. Suvalkija 1972.

Friday, 1 February 2013

The gates of Dawn stained glass window

Aušros vartų Mergelės vitražas. Iruoštas Kun J. Kungio atminimui.

Blessed Virgin Mary and the gates of dawn.  In memory of Father J. Kungys.

The Gates of Dawn is the only remaining of the nine city gates built in Vilnius, built in 1503. The Chapel in the Gate of Dawn contains an icon of The Blessed Virgin Mary Mother of Mercy, said to have miraculous powers.

Sanctified 6 September by Father A. Spurgis.

This window is above the side entry door to the church.  It is in memory of Elija Lazauskiene who died 19 April 1971.