First of its Kind in North America

“Saulės Takas” (SOW-LESS TA-KAS) or “Path of the Sun” undertaken at Lauritzen Gardens, in collaboration with the Omaha Friends of Šiauliai, is part of a multi-year project.

 

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The Hill of Witches (Raganų Kalnas) in Lithuania.

The vision is to create a grove of Lithuanian folk wood sculptures, with a variety of pieces crafted by a diverse group of folk artists and wood carvers from Lithuania. This grove will be the first of its kind in North America. The elements will include wooden carvings of folk tales and Lithuanian nature characters, as stand alone carvings, benches, children’s play complex, signs and eventually a pavilion. What a beautiful way to reflect the Lithuanian culture, to let a tree live on-to be enjoyed in a garden for future generations. To enhance the ambiance, additional items like metal work and fencing would be created.

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Aurimas Šimkus, wood carver from Šiauliai creates a wood sculpture of Egle on site at Lauritzen Gardens.

The first phase was installed in August 2015. Aurimas Šimkus, wood carver from Šiauliai, chose the story of Egle, one that all Lithuanians learn at a young age of the how the oak, ash, birch, quaking aspen and spruce came into being. Aurimas was able to share these traditions with garden guests, and for them to watch the artist’s process- and see the tree get a new life meant so much more than just unwrapping a present.

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The public unveiling ceremony for the inaugural Lithuanian folk wood sculpture of Eglė was held August 28 and was attended by dignitaries Rolandas Kriščiūnas,Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania and Jean Stothert,Mayor of Omaha.

Lauritzen Gardens is honored to be the home of such a special gift. The tradition of wood carving in Lithuania is a beautiful folk art and is something that is passed down from generation to generation. An incredible addition to Lauritzen Gardens permanent art collection.

Artists are being commissioned in Lithuania for this project. Omaha Friends of Šiauliai are soliciting underwriters and support at all levels. All donations are tax deductable. For further information please send us an email at saulestakas@omahasistercities.com.

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