Nanook Nanook

Nanook.lt is a multimedia production focused on contemporary social issues, news coverage.

Based in Lithuania, working internationally.

Nanook team consists of professional enthusiastic storytellers who seek, react, travel experience and share. We produce professional multimedia (sound, text, video, photo, mood icons) documentary material.

Subject, angle, story form, work ethics and exclusivity is our vital traits.

Nanook education program, unites young and enthusiastic students, provides practical experience while they become team members for different features.

Collections created

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Removing Soviet sculptures
Vilnius
By Nanook
21 Jul 2015

The Green Bridge. Vilnius. Lithuania. The current bridge over the Neris river was built in 1951. The construction works were performed by the Soviet military engineering construction teams. The bridge was designed by Leningrad architects. In 1952, the bridge was decorated by four sets of sculptures. The names of the sculpture sets are as follows: "Youth of Education", "Guarding Peace", "Industry and Construction " and "Agriculture". Because of the current geopolitical situation, even a slightest association with Russia or its oppression triggers unpleasant feelings for a part of the society. The discussion about the removal of the sculptures became more intense when the war in the Eastern Ukraine between Russians and Ukrainians broke out. Before the war, it was emphasized that the sculptures are in emergency condition; therefore they must be restored (after removal or right there on the bridge). All tenders for removing the sculptures announced by the municipality of Vilnius failed one after another. The Soviet sculptures became one of the symbols of confrontation between Lithuanian patriots and pro-Russian parties. Of course, some people did not care about the sculptures at all. However, Lithuanian patriots, especially the youth, have spoken out strongly against the presence of the sculptures in public. Though a Soviet symbol still remains on one of the sculptures, those sets are included into the Register of Cultural Property. The critics say that the sculptures are a part of the Soviet propaganda and they offend people who fought for Lithuania's liberation from the Soviet occupation. Those who are for preservation of the sculptures state that they must remain as a part of our history. The mayor of Vilnius Remigijus Šimašius: The sculptures are removed, technically speaking, not for restoration, but because of safety reasons. Whether they will be restored or not, depends on many things..."

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Life in Green and White: An 'Ultra's'...
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
02 Apr 2015

Text and Photos by Karolis Pilypas Liutkevicius

Vilniaus Žalgiris scores a goal in a football match against Klaipėdos Atlantas, two of Lithuania’s top teams. The fan section of the stadium erupts in a ferocious show of support. Some fans stumble down the stadium platform to greet the players face to face, others light flares. Everything is engulfed by smoke, the air fills up with loud chants. However, not everyone knows what happens after the echoes of the seemingly primordial shouts of football fans bounce off the walls of the stadium for the last time, when the last whistle is blown.

This is about trying to look through the seemingly negative façade of the “ultra,” a word used to describe some of the most hardcore sports fans on the planet.

“You could call it my second family,” says Jonas Šečkus, 36.

Jonas is a father of two young kids, he’s happily married, enjoys his job as a geologist and as a geology lecturer at Kaunas and Klaipėda universities. He has been a hardcore football fan since 2010.

“Yes, I’m an ultra. What’s bad about being so into something? And of course, just like in any family there are people who are, to put it lightly, a bit weirder, but there’s also really good guys. What keeps everyone in line is that we have boundaries that should not be crossed”, explains Jonas.

Politics of the game

According to Jonas, being a dedicated football fan in Lithuania is a different experience than being one in countries that are more well-known for the sport. Žalgiris’s budget consists of a smaller amount than what the country’s most beloved sport – basketball - and it’s two biggest teams get. Since a football club is more expensive to maintain than a basketball team, the level at which this sport is played in Lithuania is lower than what people are used to in more football-oriented countries.

This contributes to the fact that there aren’t as many fans as is usual within football fan clubs elsewhere. The “Pietų IV Ultras,” are therefore considered a local phenomenon. The fan club which consists of around 100 people is strikingly dedicated and well known among the population, mostly for their ferocity that is often publically associated with fanaticism. Since the Žalgiris club was established in 1965, it has been heavily associated with national history, and this makes most of the fans very patriotic, in some cases even ethnocentric.

“I don’t think you can separate any sport from politics. But since football has the strength of being the biggest sport in the world, politics are easily visible in it,” Jonas explains. Žalgiris football club has played a major part in Lithuanian history as a means for everyday people to express the independence and freedom of their country.

“Of course if some sort of pro-Russian ‘vatnik’ would suddenly appear among us in the stadium and start preaching his ideology, it would end badly for him,” says Jonas while eating sandwiches made by his wife. He talks about violence in a very nonchalant way, but with some thoughtful reservations. Without saying exactly how badly it would end for someone with such a political disposition, he makes it clear that it certainly wouldn’t be nice.

A day to day ultra

In his home and at work Jonas makes an effort to live a normal life. A courier arrives with a new child’s bike, colored green – the prefered colours of his football club - that he looks forward to giving to his daughter as a gift. At his office, Jonas is extremely concentrated on preparing an upcoming lecture and making the slides as interesting for his students as he can.

“I love teaching. It’s not about the money, it’s about the experience that this occupation gives you,” Jonas admits.

“My students know that I’m an ultra, but I don’t parade that in front of them. I usually don’t wear my colors to lectures or my office.”

Contrary to what most people would think about “ultras,” football fandom fits into Jonas’s life without any repercussions, he says.

“It’s a way for people to vent,” he reflects. “After their stressful jobs, or with the intention to get something off their minds, people come here with the same intentions as those who go to shooting clubs, only we go to watch football and support our team. I think it’s meaningful. From the sidelines it may look violent, since we shout and light pyrotechnics, but we shout so they can hear us. We burn flares so they can see us. That’s what support is about.”

Jonas is clearly not a fan of the media and how it gives ultras a negative connotation by portraying their lifestyle as violent.

“Media wants bad news, because it is an easier sell. If a conflict between the police and fans erupts, they won’t even look into who’s the culprit,” he says. “Of course the fans are the bad guys, because police have the status of untouchable public guardians. That’s a normal view, but since there’s a lot that’s wrong with police in most countries, Lithuania included, everything gets complicated.”

Under scrutiny

The police, on the other hand, have a different opinion about Jonas’ fan club. Always hovering around the part of the stadium where the fans gather, they constantly observe them as they arrive.

“Once I arrived at the stadium, and a police officer, who I didn’t even know, greeted me by name. They monitor us very closely, maybe even take pictures of us,” a young fan from the fanclub said. “They’re annoying.”

This timidly hostile view of the police seems to be shared by many of the fans. Before the game they often glance at the officers in a belligerent way and murmur some remarks about them.

“There were times when I was involved with some violent stuff, but I won’t talk about it,” Jonas says while putting on his jersey before heading to the stadium.

It’s time for one of the most important matches in the Lithuanian football league. Klaipėdos Atlantas and Vilniaus Žalgiris are set to play at the home stadium of the latter team.

After passing the security checkpoint just outside the stadium, Jonas enters the area of the stadium reserved for the fan club. He seems to feel at home here. The constant smile on his face while he meets his friends quickly changes to an expression full of excitement by the time the match starts. The chanting begins, flares are lit and everything fades into a mist of excitement and smoke.

Media created

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 35
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Mindaugas Standing on pedestal where soviet soldiers used to be. Mindaugas: My grandfather is commander of revolution against Bolshevism on 1941. For my and for my family it is festivity. But it is strange that this festivity come after 25 years. I am standing here to show that if Bolsheviks standed here for 25 years, now here should be placed flags of Lithuania.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 34
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
31 Dec 2014

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Green bridge in winter.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 32
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
31 Dec 2014

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Woman is passing by statues of soldiers in winter.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 31
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
11 Jan 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Coat of the soldier statue.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 33
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
31 Dec 2014

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Statues in winter.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 26
Vilnius
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Workplace were secured by police.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 30
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Empty postament of one of the statues.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 28
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Statue of soldier in the mid air.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 29
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Firts statues were taken off in the midle of the night.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 27
Vilnius
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Worker is carefully takeint statue down.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 25
Vilnius
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. worker near by soviet symbol.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 23
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Workers working on the night.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 25
Vilnius
By Nanook
20 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. First statue is taken off.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 21
Vilnius
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Soldiers int the cage.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 23
Vilnius
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Works took through night.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 19
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Woman near by statues.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 20
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 17
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Woman are reading in front of statue of "Youth of Education".

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 18
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Worker is facing soldiers statues.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 15
Vilnius
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Audrius Bačiulis: it is grate Sunday. No matter these works are late for a week, but I think because of leaked emails from city council this is a good chance for the mayor to curry favor with rightists,

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 16
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. People watching through the window of trolleybus.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 13
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Saulius Stoma: it looks funny to me. We are free out of this system for such a long time. These statues are symbols ot that system. I can see no art here. On XXI age people are still killed under these symbols, so I think these symbolls are unaceptable.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 14
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Elena: Destroying and removing these sculptures is inhumane. That system was real system for real people.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 11
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Marija: it should have been done long time ago. I'm thankful to our mayor.No matter that it is work of our sculptors I see no art here. This is tribute to sovietism. I hope they (sculptures) will not come back.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 12
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Boris: I am sad. When Arturas Zuokas was mayor he didn't let this to happen. Now you will cross this bridge and you will not see these sculptures. It was way to educate children.

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Soviet vilnius bridge 09
Vilnius
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Frame is being placed over the statues of soldiers.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 10
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Green bridge.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 07
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Workers near by the statue.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 08
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Pedestrian traffic were limited.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 05
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Worker is placing frame to support statues when they will be taken off.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 06
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Frame is being placed over the statues.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 03
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Bridge was secured by police while demontation works continued.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 04
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
19 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. worker in front of statues.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 01
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
13 Feb 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Marks of corosion.

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Soviet Vilnius Bridge 02
Vilnius, Lithuania
By Nanook
11 Jul 2015

Soviet era statues are being dismantled from the Green Bridge over the Neris river in Vilnius. Woman passing by the soviet statues by buss.

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Java Batik 30
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
By Nanook
15 Apr 2015

Indonesian girl wearing batik in rural Yogyakarta.

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Java Batik 29
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
By Nanook
15 Apr 2015

Ayunda, a local Indonesian, wearing batik in rural Java.

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Java Batik 27
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
By Nanook
15 Apr 2015

Ayunda, a local Indonesian, wearing batik in rural Java.

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Java Batik 28
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
By Nanook
15 Apr 2015

Ayunda, a local Indonesian, wearing batik in rural Java.

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Java Batik 26
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
By Nanook
15 Apr 2015

Ayunda, a local Indonesian, wearing batik in rural Java.