Domas Mykolas Malinauskas was born in Kaunas, graduated from Kaunas Art Gymnasium, later studied Sculpture at Vilnius Art Academy, Kaunas Faculty. A couple of years later he transferred to Vilnius faculty and graduated his bachelor’s degree there. Next, he studied Cultural Heritage at Vilnius University, however, he obtained his master’s degree at Vilnius Art Academy, Department of Sculpture. The opportunity to change between faculties and universities allowed the artist to gain many new experiences and find an interest in archaeology, which became the main creative axis.
The final motive for the exhibition Future Wonderland – a sweet personal nostalgia for the games, cartoons, its characters, well-known brands as well as their products, which raised the generation of the XXth century’s last decade. The exhibition is full of references to the unique virtual reality aesthetics of the 1990s, which then represented the idealistic, peaceful world of a child, constantly inviting to come back and blindly immerse. This virtual reality thought the maturing personalities to distinguish between good and bad, introduced various cultures, nature’s phenomenon, developed the ideas of equality and anti-racism.
Domas Mykolas is determined to stop time and his childhood memories. The artist creates a fictional museum by turning the pop culture characters of 1990s – Pokémon, Sonic and many others – into benumbed exhibits. Nostalgia, which used to be a longing for childhood times, materialises – feelings turn into physical fossils of iconic characters and related objects. The fictional museum not only materialises the personal experience of the artist, but also undertakes the responsibility of preserving the exhibits and time itself, thus giving meaning and highlighting the values of the recent past. Charizard, Togepi, PlayStation, Game boy, Milk caps turn into expensive relicts held in a museum.
When the items and cultural elements representing a generation, which is only turning thirty, are kept in a museum, it urges to look at the past from an unproportionally big time perspective. Most of the items of the exhibition imitates a well-preserved construction of bones, others are crystalised or have turned into stone. Such fossils take thousands of years to form in nature and in the exhibition, it took less than half a century! We now see the oldest version of PlayStation as a remnant while still living in our epoque. This way the sculptures of Domas Mykolas underline the difference between the human and the natural, nature time: the pace of modern people is becoming faster and things, ideas, values and memories from the recent past are quickly becoming as remains of cultural archaeology. Thus, we can raise a question if the short and fast time of the modern person can challenge nature, control time and determine the birth of cultural relicts?
The pop culture artifacts, which are depicted in the exhibition, can be seen as symbols of our epoque and can already talk about the values and cultural presumptions of the Y generation. The artefacts of this fictional museum are a view into what remains and fossils will be left behind this person of a hasty and consumer epoque. What impression will it have on the future generations which will discover the cans of Coca-Cola, Xbox or Pokémon? These well-known and nostalgic items of the exhibition turn into a reference point for a more critical look into what representative signs of the period are left for the judgement of the future generations. Nonetheless, it is also an optimistic opportunity to create a new mythology for the 1990s and to think over the present times.