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Raudondvaris Count Benediktas Henrikas Tiškevičius (1852–1935), a master of pictorial photography, spent most of his life travelling and in France, but he constantly returned to his native land. In the late 19th c., he became interested in artistic photography, was a member of the prestigious Parisian photo club, and his works were admired by visitors of many art photography salons.
In some photos the count captured the luxurious interiors of the palace, the manor environment, aristocratic life and entertainment, travel, he took photos of his family and close people, in others, he admired the nature of Naliboki forest, explored the types and life of Zakopane and Lithuanian people, created art scenes in nature and his photo studio. Although some photos were to remain in family albums and others were for exhibitions and magazines, they are all interesting to the contemporary viewer both as witnesses to the past and as a result of the photographer’s artistic aspirations.
Although it has long been thought that all the negatives and prints of the count’s photos went missing, a few years ago the collector Gediminas Petraitis (1956–2021) found and returned to Lithuania more than five hundred photos taken by B. H. Tiškevičius between 1891 and 1898. They supplemented the collections of Photography Museum, Lithuanian National Museum of Art, Kaunas District Museum and Trakai History Museum, and a large part of the collection is stored in the Petraičiai family archive. On July 6 – October 10, 2021 visitors had the opportunity to see the most impressive works of the collections in coordinated exhibitions of three Lithuanian museums.
The exhibition of Kaunas District Museum in Raudondvaris Castle „The Portrait of the Raudondvaris Counts Tyszkiewicz Family“ told about the life of B. H. Tiškevičius and his family in Raudondvaris, Viala and the time spent here, outings, moments of family trips around the world. Raudondvaris Castle exhibited a collection of 100 unique photographs by B. H. Tiškevičius, stored in Kaunas District Museum, purchased at auctions in Vilnius and Paris.
„In the exhibition Between Lithuania and France. The two Worlds of Count Tiškevičius“ in his Photos of the Late 19th Century in Vilnius Picture Gallery were mainly presented documentary and artistic photographs by Count B. H. Tiškevičius, previously considered missing and now preserved in the Petraičiai family collection. They were taken in France, Poland, Lithuania and the former Viala manor near Vilnius in present-day Belarus.
In Photography Museum in Šiauliai, in the exhibition „Count Tiškevičius‘ Photography Studio. Staging of Epochs”, the peculiarities of the photography by Count B. H. Tiškevičius, artistic searches and achievements, historical and modern contexts of photographic creation were analyzed. The collection of works by B. H. Tiškevičius preserved in Photography Museum, the works of the author that spread elsewhere in Lithuania and abroad were presented here.
The theme of the exhibition at the Museum of Photography became the basis for the book “The Photographic Studio of Count Tiškevičius”, in which B. H. Tiškevičius reveals himself as a distinctive, inventive and sensitive artist.
The project is funded by the Lithuanian Council for Culture and Šiauliai City Municipality