My Siberia Souls light sculptures will be shown at the Chapel-Columbarium at Tuskulėnai Memorial Park, Vilnius, Lithuania. The opening reception is scheduled for June 13 at 16:00.
Between 1944 and 1947, 767 individuals were executed and buried on the grounds of the Tuskulėnai Manor, near Vilnius. After being sentenced to death on the charge of “treason against the homeland”, their bodies were desecrated and tossed into mass graves. These Stalinist atrocities were performed by the NKGB.
This memorial project’s authors designed a structure in the form of an ancient Lithuanian burial mound. On November 4, 2004, the remains of 717 persons were placed in uniform urn-style coffins, which in turn were placed into the crypts.
Further information about the Tuskulėnai Memorial Park can be found on their website by clicking HERE.
June 14 is designated as the Day of Mourning and Hope because on this day, in 1941 Stalin’s mass deportations from Lithuania, to Siberia, started.
On a personal note, besides 12 of my blood relatives being deported to Siberia, and four killed at the hands of the NKVD, my own father was tried and sentenced to death as a “enemy of the homeland”. His trial took place in abstentia, with him having been accused of fighting with the Lithuanian partisans. In fact, he had escaped Stalin’s oppression and at the time was living in a displaced persons camp in Germany.
A further reflection about my father, Vaclovas Plioplys. After fleeing Lithuania, for a period of time he volunteered at German anti-aircraft batteries and helped to shoot down Russian war planes. Even though at the time Russians were “allies”, I consider my father’s activity to be heroic: witness—Ukraine.