This is a short summary of what I tried to draw for Vilnius University for the occasion of their anniversary, and why.
I'm trying to remember the ideas that jumped into my head when Vilnius University community asked me to draw anniversary posters for them. First, my thoughts were bouncing around gigantic cakes, some 440 candles and confetti. Then I realized how big the number 440 is – those years contain so many events one can be proud of; but then again, a mature university probably doesn't like to show off. And so once the first ideas settled down a little, we turned our attention to the university's slogan, “Hinc itur ad astra”, (meaning “From here the way leads to the stars”), that has been with the university for centuries and that became the cornerstone of the illustrations. These words encapsulate so many things.
Stars make me think of distances in space (or maybe depths that one dives into) and of immense spaces that I can hardly comprehend. The slogan is really ambitious, as it communicates that the university is a place, a starting point from where those celestial bodies, so unimaginably faraway, can be reached. As I'm thinking of space, I also inevitably think of various dimensions, such as time and space. Because stars have been in existence for a very long period of time, they somehow remind me of knowledge and ideas. What an amount of knowledge and ideas orbit around us every day, and how difficult it is to pick out the right ones! And where does that one indispensable idea hide when we need it the most? Or else, which ideas will stand the test of time? How many of them lay in a bite of an apple? It's true that stars, like knowledge, show us the way forward. To my mind, science unveils a new dimension for us, a dimension of knowledge, that's really just a step away, but has so far gone unnoticed. In the posters, the objects blend with space and the boundary between the visible world and the world of ideas begins to melt away. And so one's eyes are turned towards stars.