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Art & Architecture Photographer’s edgy work displayed in Vitas Luckus: The Prince of Obscurity

He is perhaps Lithuania’s greatest photographer, but the late Vitas Luckus is mostly unknown outside that Baltic nation.

Vitas Luckus relatives

He is perhaps Lithuania's greatest photographer, but the late Vitas Luckus is mostly unknown outside that Baltic nation. In fact, the title of a Toronto exhibition is Vitas Luckus: The Prince of Obscurity. However, the life and work of Luckus is now becoming known, thanks to Charlotte Hale, the namesake proprietor of a small Toronto gallery where the photographer's portraiture is being shown this month. Hale was studying photography herself in the late 1990s when she was given The Hard Way, a book of Luckus's work. "His photos were honest and instantly compelling," says Hale, who was not familiar with the edgy artist who was badgered by Soviet authorities, whose work was repressed during his lifetime and who died in 1987 after committing murder and then killing himself. Hale came to know Tanya Aldag, Luckus's muse and now widow. "They were the John and Yoko of Lithuania," says Hale. Aldag will appear at a reception at the Charlotte Hale & Associates gallery on Saturday. (Vitas Luckus: The Prince of Obscurity runs till April 30; chaleandassociates.com.)

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