When Lithuanian graphic designer and illustrator Martynas Pavilonis moved to his grandparents’ town in northern Lithuania, he was fascinated by how still the place was. Once a buzzing industrial Soviet town, Panevėžys is now quiet, and many of its buildings are abandoned. Pavilonis, however, finds this atmosphere “comforting”, especially at night, when wild animals sneak into the town. “At night, I see more than I ever could in the daylight,” Pavilonis told The Calvert Journal.
It’s this feeling of calmness and wonder that Pavilonis captures in his orderly, black and white illustrations, brought to life by an array of surprising characters: whether that’s a deer bathing in the streetlight, or a duck swimming in a puddle on top of a tower block.
Pavilonis has been included twice in the Lürzer’s Archive list of the world’s 200 best illustrators. His drawings for the children’s book, The Marmies. Olly and the Bucket of Paint, written by his twin sister Indrė Pavilonytė, also won the Emerging and Established Award at UK’s Cheltenham Illustration Awards in 2019.
His plans for the future? A horror book for adults.
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