The exhibition marking the 70th anniversary of Soviet occupation of Lithuania was opened on July 15th, the day that 70 years ago the Red Army entered Kaunas, the former provisional capital of Lithuania. This is so-called first Soviet occupation, which lasted one year and ended on June 22, 1941, with the Nazi invasion.
Many sound researches on this subject have been made and publicized; many thorough exhibitions were opened to commemorate this tragic event. Nevertheless, there are still several important subjects slightly overlooked so far. First and the most important of all, it is the public sphere of that time. How was it transformed to match the imposed ideology? What brainwash technologies were used to transform the attitude towards past and present political systems?
The organizers of this exhibition concentrate upon the role of fine arts in transforming the public sphere during the first Soviet occupation. They point out that fine arts were turned into an instrument to convey dominant ideology. Artists were pressed to fill the public sphere with new images, symbols, values and ideas. Those who refused to cooperate tasted the harshness of the new regime.