Eduardas Jonušas House

Eduardo Jonušo namai
Eduardas Jonušas House

E. A. Jonušo g. 1, Nida

Eduard Jonušas House is open to the public:
From 1 July: III-VI 12.00-18.00
Or by prior arrangement by phone + 37068210493

Nida and the experiences there were life changing for Eduardas Antanas Jonušas. He discovered there the disappearing Curonian lifestyle (a small group of Curonians that had returned there was still living in Nida). He got to know some of them fairly well after moving to Nida in 1971. The artist dedicated 30 years of his lifetime to revive the ethnic culture of the area that was being destroyed on purpose after the war. He paid special attention to the most significant cultural symbols such as "krikštai" (traditional burial monuments), "vėtrungės" (ornate weathervanes), "kurėnai" (traditional Curonian boats) and architectural elements of fishermen’s houses (gable crosses and barge boards).
Inspired by the Curonians’ deep understanding of the spiritual world, Jonušas drew up plans for a project to reconstruct an old, deserted graveyard in Nida and to restore "krikštai," the traditional grave markers. He was one of the pioneers in analysing a very distinct phenomenon of the Curonian ethnic culture – weathervanes. He gathered a collection of their drawings and wrote a book on weathervanes with artist Rimantas Dichavičius. Unfortunately, the authorities of the day did not allow it to be published. He also collected exhibits for the Curonian Spit History Museum.
After the restoration of Lithuania’s independence, having receiving the drawings, Eduardas Jonušas built the first traditional fishing boat "kurėnas" after the war. “In this way, I pay my tribute to those who were born here, who grow up here and are intertwined with this land” (Jonušas).
Eduardas Jonušas was not just a reviver of the area’s ethnographic heritage but an artist as well. He created his firs work as a sculptor in Nida. It was a decorative composition, called Neringos Vartai (The Gate of Neringa), which stands by the entrance of Neringa and is an embodiment of the rich symbols of this region, as it depicts three sails with weathervanes. Jonušas has made a major contribution to reviving the memory of Martynas Liudvikas Rėza, the prominent academic and cultural figure from the Curonian Spit. On the Skirpstas Dune, not far from Pervalka, a memorial monument was built by Jonušas in 1975. The creative works of Jonušas can be seen in many of the Neringa’s public places: an art piece, called Darbas (Work), decorates the entrance hall of the Neringa Municipality’s building, and the decorative composition Pašto Karieta (The Mail Carriage) can be seen on the facade of the Neringa’s post office.
Eduardas Jonušas’s paintings and especially the pastel drawings of his early years were dominated by the nature of the Curonian Spit and its ethnographic motifs. Later, he spent all of his creative years making various series of paintings symbolically sharing his experiences from the hell of the Soviet gulag.
Eduardas Jonušas is an honorary citizen of Neringa, has received a Knight’s Cross of the Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas and is a laureate of the Martynas Liudvikas Rėza Prize. He died in 2014 and was buried in Nida Ethnographic Cemetery.
In 2016, in workshops of Eduardas Jonušas, the non-profit organisation Eduardo Jonušo Namai was established.