Ñèïðîøâèëè Ãèâè Èðàêëèåâè÷

Îõîòà. Àâòîïîðòðåò.

On The Earth And In The Heaven

      Why is it believed from time immemorial that Russian and Georgian people have so much in common? Nowadays when the relations between Georgia and Russia are minimized Georgia lives in hearts even of those who have never been there thanks to the artists and “northerners’ deep and burning passion for the south” as Alexander Benua, the artist and arts critic, wrote at the beginning of the CC century.

Artists’ life is not a bed of roses, and the birth-year of Givi Irakliyevich Siproshvili – 1940 – speaks for itself, when he was a man of seventies, he had to move to Russia not because of love of move. Having grown up in the warm, bright and tender land of Georgia the artist does not separate himself from its culture, he is its part, the part both of  the past and the present, he keeps to its moral principles, the high degree of his national temperament doesn’t change with years.  

In view of unfortunate circumstances there are practically no works of the seventies – the beginning of the nineties, but the review of his paintings of the first decade of the XXI century gives a clear idea of his restlessness in art and life, his constant creative search for the way of Truth and Beauty. That is the artistic explorations of the wise man and mature master, which are by no means connected with tentative and chaotic self-search; in the master’s creative development, there is certain oriental all-sufficiency of the man belonging to the ancient culture.    

His earliest works are ‘Spring. The Schoolgirl’, ‘The clown’, ‘The Echo’ which represent different pictorial and plastic manners, they can be symbolically called starting points of several artistic periods. In spite of the difference of aims, all these masterpieces are united by interaction of the space and figures, the space here is always intense and filled, and it seems to shape or carve the image itself. The space of the picture is forming, there are new opportunities of pictorial art concentrated, potential existence and development of form. 

         The palette of the artist can be both extremely bright (‘The first kiss’) and ascetic-moderate (‘The veterans’, ‘The refugees of Abkhazia’). In these works of art, the theme of which the artist himself gained through suffering, the earth and people are a single whole, indivisible flesh and blood, and when people leave or die they disappear in it, they stay in it forever. In the pictures by G.I. Siproshvili there are many details which are threads connecting the temporal and the eternal, the past and the future. His work of art ‘When the bell rings’ is poetic, sad and light, where the world beyond the clouds is attractive and shining, but much more shines a little ear from the field not letting the soul go away. ‘The death of Pirosmani’ is in itself a self-portrait as well as ‘The hunting. The self-portrait’, both are of the same kidney, bright and colorful.

The idea of self-portraying is represented in merely formal decisions such as   ‘Anguish’. In a word, the distant past, the real world and the imaginary world surround the artist’s soul and become its imprint on the canvas.    One of his anecdotal worksJudithis remarkably successful.   The story from Old Testament, to which great artists have been adverting for many centuries, is interpreted in the keen and up-to-date manner, cum grano salis and at the same time with the veneration for all-conquering youth and beauty. The peculiar style of this work of art, the author’s painstaking work at colorful surface imparts thrilling charm of antiquity. The picture ‘In the apple-tree garden’ is a kind of original folklore parallel of ‘Judith’, it is also based on the theme of young and old age, impossibility of love and sweetness of sin.

    The portraits by G.I. Siproshvili are a certain kind of poetic metaphors, but there is vital personal attitude, graphic accuracy and the space of mystery.

The small cycle of works which can be called ‘profiles’ (‘The doctor and the patient’, ‘The two’, ‘Einstein’) is comprehensive, complicated in style, notable for its pure laconic images with their philosophic depth and metaphorical character. However, there is a kind smile in these portraits as in works of any true Georgian artist, the smile which is given as a prize to the spectator who has solved the riddle of the portrait. The evidence of the transfer to the new level of figurativeness is the work of art ‘Adam and Eve’, where there is not just a plastic formula of love and existence, but also special insight and irradiation, trust in heaven, belief in that God will never leave His sinful children.

    The artist’s eternal thirst is one for beauty. It is in a portrait, landscape, it is beyond the tangible world – in free flights, dreams, fancy, utopias. It is a cycle of the works with high degree of conditional character, the works that the author calls ‘Fantasies’. The composition with the title ‘Fantasies-19’, no matter whether it is an opening flower or shell, represents the creation full of dazzling opportunities as well as the intense pictorial structure on the canvas ‘The Galaxy’. The decorative still life ‘The red jug’ is earthly beauty of plain things through which goes the flow of ideal divine plan. The antithesis of these dreams and fantasies about perfection is ‘Apocalypse’, such a flower of evil, melting the earthly beauty into death and at the same time destroying deadly shackles. In this hearth the face of the artist can be seen and the features of his personages can be recognized.

     The technical side of G.I. Siproshvili’s works astonishes with its diversity: somewhere there are large colorful planes laid with palette knife (‘Night butterflies’), somewhere there is a slow plastic dab modeling the shape (‘Vesper bell’). In some works the complex acinose texture with colored lining, relief imprints, harrowing is by itself precious and needs just an elegant touch of the brush for the birth of the image (‘The rest’, ‘The roses’). Many techniques are the unique author’s invention – as in ‘The Cahetian’, ‘The doctor and the patient’, ‘The two’. The author’s work at texture imparts peculiar value to his masterpieces.

   No matter how interesting the technical devices may be, neither they nor handicraft side make G.I. Siproshvili’s painting the bright occurrence in fine arts. In his works, philosophic parables and life landscapes, fantasies and still life, there is thought, soul,  bright emotional palette, and most of all love, without which the mystery of Art can not be born.  

 Irena Protopopova

arts critic, member of the union of artists of  the RF

Ðóññêàÿ âåðñèÿÐóñ/ English versionEng