A MONUMENT TO THE FOUNDER OF LITHUANIAN STATE, KING MINDAUGAS, IN VILNIUS
|Address||T.Vrublevskio str., Vilnius|
|Client||Ministry of Culture|
Solution for the monument to commemorate the 750th coronation anniversary of the King Mindaugas was offered by the space itself. The square is at the heart of the old Vilnius where major architectural monuments are to be found. Therefore the authors did not want to have one more monument nearby the existing ones, as well as to avoid rival verticals and focus attention on a single point. Their aim was to give a sense to the whole territory – territory of the old castles – stretching from the Cathedral Square to the riverside Neris. From that perspective a landscape solution was the only possible choice.
Idea of the monument was inspired by the territory and its cultural layer that has been formed here over the years. Historical sources show a streamlet in this particular place (in “Lost Vilnius” by Vladas Drėma) which is presently a part of drainage system. This led the authors of the project to an idea to reanimate a watercourse at the same place not only as an element of historic landscape but also as an image of “artery of history”. A tiny streamlet that flows into a river reflects origins of the Lithuanian state united by Mindaugas. Christening and coronation of the ruler manifested determination of this state to consolidate its ties with Western Europe. The streamlet also emerges as a dividing line between the two worlds: the one referred to as a land of pagans and the one of a civilized state. This fragmentary exposure of the streamlet itself would become a monument to this segment of Lithuanian history and its’ ruler, as well as to the state that lost its continuity and was unduly deleted for some time from the world maps. Mindaugas, the only King of Lithuania, was borne away by the flow of Time, but the State that he created remained for centuries.
Materials used: the square at new Arsenal is paved with stone panels which fragment at the watercourse, and steel plates are placed on the edge of waterside. The watercourse is illuminated with underwater installations. Waterstream produces a natural sound. Underneath and waterside could be also decorated with installations (texts, symbols, etc.). Ferroglass bridges serve as functional passages which visually do not divide a line of the streamlet.