When creating the show Anšlavs Eglītis. The Young Man, design studio H2E wanted to reveal the writer’s multifaceted personality and views on life. The permanent exhibition in Inciems resembles a story that invites the reader to interact with it and to draw parallels with one’s own life.
Anšlavs Eglītis (1906–1993) was a versatile personality — a writer, playwright, painter, journalist, athlete and dandy — the «young man» of his time. In his most famous novel, At the Castle (Pansija pilī), the author describes the memories of his youth in Inciems, so it is natural that the exhibition dedicated to Eglītis is located there. Writer Anete Konste, who is the author of the exhibition’s content and texts, writes: «Anšlavs Eglītis looks at the world closely as an investigator. He notices every little detail, nuance, sigh, curvature, pause, slightest deviation or divergence. He sees people’s socks and dimples, the noblest and the darkest in them. And it is all brought back to the world, turned into stories, portraits, poems, plays and landscapes.» The new exhibition is not made up of objects, but rather of the most important landmarks in the writer’s life and work, from which, according to Konste, «everyone can create their own portrait of Anšlavs».
The show is designed as a social space for self-reflection. In interaction with the content of the exhibition, Anšlavs’ biography, the visitor is encouraged to seek answers to the most important questions of life. The target audience of the exhibition is both young people and «young people» — everyone who is looking for their own way and does not stop at difficulties or at what has been achieved, but challenges themselves.
Ingūna Elere, the lead designer of the H2E studio, says: «The exhibition stems from Anšlavs Eglītis’ own personality, his creative process and life experience. Its purpose is to normalise the uncertainty of life, emphasise the uniqueness of each way of life and inspire not to be afraid of the unknown.» The exhibition helps to get to know not only Anšlavs Eglītis, but also to understand oneself, breaking down the border where the story of Anšlavs ends and the story of the visitor begins. The designers admit that it was a challenge to reflect a sense of openness and dissolved borders in the 35-square-meter space, but in the end the design idea has been implemented successfully.
The visual language of the exhibition is simple and mostly black and white, allowing the text on the walls and floor to dominate, as well as highlighting Anšlavs’ own drawings. One of the strongest influences in the identity of the exhibition is the aesthetics characteristic of the Bauhaus school and modernism, which were also close to Eglītis. This is evident both in the use of primary colours — blue, yellow, red — and geometric shapes, as well as in the fact that only lowercase letters are used in the exhibition.
The permanent exhibtion Anšlavs Eglītis. The Young Man is located at Anšlava Eglīša iela 5, Inciems, Krimulda municipality. To arrange a visit, those interested are invited to book a time on the exhibition’s website.