Thursday, February 7, 2013

 FRIDAY, JULY 24, 2009

"Kiss to Summer" by Maka Batiashvili

Georgian painter Maka Batiashvili decided to express gratitude to sunny July by holding her “Kiss to Summer” exhibit of about 40 pieces from July 17 until late August at the Art-Lavka exhibit hall in Tbilisi.
The exhibit was organized by Ketato Charkviani, wife of the late Georgian singer Irakli Charkviani. Batiashivili was the first artist to have her work displayed in the new space, but Charkviani hopes to host other modern art exhibits there in the future.
“It is just a gathering of the works I have in Tbilisi,” Batiashvili said at the opening. “Some of them were even painted a couple days ago.”
The main features of her work are the moods and emotions of people shown through unshaped figures with flat, almost homogeneous faces with slightly traced features, leaving the impression that the feelings are on the surface and the figures are part of the background.
The oil work “Decision” depicts two women sitting at a table, about to make a decision, who seem to have indifferent faces, but their horizontally stretched lips and crossed fingers express tension, while their button-like eyes suggest a feeling of hope. This hope is significant to all of Batiashvili’s people.
They all are sad, strained and sometimes seem to be grieving from loneliness, but a glimpse of hope is always there in their black, dot-like eyes.
Colors that the artist used are a contrast of pastels and darks. She used khaki, brown, mat blue, yellow and green, and the pictures almost always have unexpected angles.
“I want to change something in my style,” she said. “I am in need of new inspirations and new shapes. I am stuck in this particular way of painting.” Earlier works are comprised more of bright and intensive colors.
Though her main interest is pictorial arts, she experiments in almost every genre.
Batiashvili works in installations, video art, photography and graphic design. In the last two years, she also discovered ink.
“Technically it is very easy to draw with ink, but I put a huge effort to show emotions I want to express,” she said. “This is the main challenge in graphics.” Shapes of graphical people are like the paintings and are as a kind of new, minimalism interpretation of the canvases.
The big screen on the terrace shows an animation film based on the artist’s works. Night time is the right time to see the film on outdoor screen.
Almost all Batiashvili’s works are exhibited in Lithuania, but since April 9, the collection has traveled from town to town around the country. The idea to exhibit modern Georgian artist in Lithuania came after Pirosmani’s successful exposition in Vilnius.
Batiashvili’s work will be on display until February 2010.
“I cannot find the reason, but Lithuanians often talk about similarities between me and Pirosmani, which annoys me a lot,” she said, but is pleased that her works gained such success in the Baltic state.

Anna Chichinadze