“I have very far-reaching goals” - Young Georgian Maestro sets about conquering the world with his brush
21 November, 2015
“I have very far-reaching goals” - Young Georgian Maestro sets about conquering the world with his brush
This man has been a hot topic in Georgia for several weeks now. The young artist whose work caused a great deal of inspiration and was successfully sold at a Sotheby’s auction has already become a mini-celebrity of sorts. This New York Academy of Art student has very ambitious plans and is very realistic about his recent success. Georgian Journal contacted painter Levan Songulashvili to find out more about him and his future goals.

– Who or what influenced you
becoming a professional artist?


– Parents play an extremely important role in raising a child and directing his development. I lived in my imaginary world since early childhood, and this inner child is still alive and well in me; in fact, I am in permanent dialogue with it and it provides me with the energy I need to exist and work. I was an only child… I think that nothing happens by coincidence and things just arranged themselves as it was necessary for my creative abilities to develop and grow. My mother’s deep faith and selfless diligent work ethic had a profound influence on my establishment as an independent person and a professional artist.

New York Academy of Art, founded by Andy Warhol, is one of the best higher education establishments for representational art, which is why I decided to enroll there. The academy’s location also influenced my decision. I’ve always felt attracted to massive proportions. New York is the world’s capital and also a worldwide hub for art. I plan to make many of my ideas come true here.
geotv.ge
Actress Brooke Shields in Levan’s Studio on Tribeca Ball

– Do your paintings belong to a particular genre? Can they be classified?

– I have a hard time designating my paintings to a concrete art movement, since they represent a synthesis between surrealism, expressionism, abstract and classic art as well as mysticism and conceptual art. They are hard to solidly classify, which is probably why people say, “It is a different culture and a different kind of art” when looking at them.

– Have any artists had a great influence on you as a man of art?

– I was more influenced by philosophers and psychological tests than particular artists. As Goya used to say, “I have had three masters, Nature, Velasquez, and Rembrandt”, so am I influenced by nature and the soul of a child that wanders the avant-garde.

– What do you think of the tendency of Georgian talent finding its way abroad and finding significantly more success there than in Georgia itself?


– Facts are stubborn things: Ideas and potential that are important for our country usually end up getting realized abroad. Why does this happen? Well, it’s high time we asked ourselves this question and started working on correcting the situation. I believe that if professionals from various works of life unite around an idea of doing something not for personal comfort but for the country and work hard, then Georgia will manage to gain an equal footing with the modern world without even having to resort to megaliths, legends, cuisine and historical golden ages. We definitely do possess this potential.
geotv.ge
“The Jellyfish”, sold at the Sotheby’s auction

“Recognition is pleasant, but I rarely give it much thought because it’s like a firework – in one moment it turns all heads and in the next we are looking at the dark sky again. Then we turn around and walk away.“

– What are your future plans?

– I have very far-reaching goals, not only personal ones but also those that will serve the country’s interests. Today, painting has grown in scale as a visual art rather than in its traditional meaning. Its function in the establishment and development of societies is extremely important. Some of my goals involve joint Georgian-American art projects, an exchange of experience and a subsequent active cultural tradeoff between peers and compatriots alike. It will be a breath of fresh air that will help the country find itself, to a certain extent. Cultural breakthroughs in a country were almost always made by individuals or tiny groups of people.

– What happened to your “The Jellyfish”? Did it sell? Which painting’s success was most important for you?

– The fact that my relationship with auctions began with Sotheby’s and passed the art critic commission that selected items for exhibition is definitely pleasing. “The Jellyfish,” a piece created in Tbilisi when I was 22, was exhibited alongside works of the world’s leading artists on October 15. Several art collectors participated in the bidding and eventually, “The Jellyfish” was sold to an American living in New York.

Recognition is pleasant, but I rarely give it much thought because it’s like a firework – in one moment it turns all heads and in the next we are looking at the dark sky again. Then we turn around and walk away.

– In the photos, you can be seen together with many famous people. Did they all come to look at your paintings? Did you receive any commendations or criticism from well-known public figures? As far as we know, Brooke Shields wanted to buy one of your works.

– Yes, my work elicits interest from art critics, fellow artists, musicians, writers, Hollywood actors and many others. I get personal exhibition offers from both within the U.S. and from European countries. Despite massive competition, my portfolio has earned me an invitation to work at the famous Manhattan-based Jeff Koons Studio. At the moment I am preparing to hold a personal exhibition in New York and plan to establish a gallery here.

– Is there a piece among your works that you consider to be your favorite?

– Yes, the one that wasn’t created yet.

Author: Lela Zurebiani

Related story:

Georgian artist’s fabulous painting sold at Sotheby’s
Print
Other Stories
Mayor of Amsterdam who created printing font for Georgian letters
Niclolaes Witsen, renowned Dutch statesman, the Mayor of Amsterdam and cartographer, who lived in the 18th century,  is well known in Europe,
Georgian Ana Urushadze among 10 female directors at Sidney Film Festival
Award-winning Georgian director Ana Urushadze is among 10 female filmmakers whose works will be screened at Sydney Film Festival 2018.
Archil Gugberidze - Meet promising Georgian actor based in New York
Georgian cinema has a glorious cinematic history that counts more than 100 years.
Century-old Georgian independence petition discovered in University of Oxford
On May 26 Georgia marks 100 years of the establishment of Democratic Republic of Georgia and gaining back its independence
Pianist Giorgi Mikadze performs in the US marking Independence Day of Georgia
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Establishment of Democratic Republic of Georgia.
Centuries-old frescoes of Georgia’s Davit Gareji complex damaged again
Georgia’s unique frescoes of Davit Gareji complex dating back to IX-XI centuries have been damaged.
Tiziano, Leonardo Da Vinci, Raphael exhibited at Georgian National Museum
After Michelangelo Buonarroti and Sandro Botticelli, D. Shevardnadze National Gallery, located at 11 Shota Rustaveli Ave. Tbilisi, Georgia,
Night in Museum – All major museums of Georgia welcome visitors for free today
Today all the major museums throughout Georgia open their doors for free to the visitors late at night.
Renowned Georgian artist Zurab Nizharadze’s artworks on display at National Gallery
Georgian National Museum presents renowned Georgian artist Zurab Nizharadze's retrospective exhibition
Tbilisi hosts largest photo festival Kolga
The 17th edition of Kolga Tbilisi Award, the large-scale and the most prestigious photo contest in Georgia, has kicked off.
Meet the First Georgian Female Electronaut to Rock Berghain Dance Floor
In the era of technology, internet and electronic music, it is far more difficult to preserve one’s individuality
Georgian film festival led by women directors takes place in London
Georgian female directors are gaining more and more recognition internationally.
Georgian female filmmakers’ triumph at Beijing International Film Festival
Georgian cinematographers claimed another great victory, this time at Beijing International Film Festival.
Renaissance of Tbilisi Academy of Arts - The first art academy of Caucasus being revived
The Tbilisi Academy of Arts is one of those hidden jewels of the capital of Georgia that the country can be proud of.
Georgian director’s film Scary Mother wins Golden Gate Prize at San Francisco Festival
Emerging Georgian director Ana Urushadze’s film Scary Mother has claimed yet another prize,
Two productions by Georgian film studio 20 Steps to compete at Cannes and SHORT OF THE YEAR
Georgian cinema continues to reach new heights and earns international success year by year.
 Alternative Tbilisi through Georgian photographer Bibliotekari's camera
Time will pass and after decades we might recall today’s Tbilisi like we evoke Soviet Tbilisi in our memory when looking at old photos of the 70s.
United Nations headquarters to host presentation of Georgian author Shota Rustaveli stamp
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the declaration of the Democratic Republic of Georgia, and there are many interesting events planned
The Guardian gives an insight intoTbilisi's creative boom
Tbilisi, Georgia’s beautiful capital is often spotlighted by the leading international media due to its cultural revolution and quick development.
Georgian actor Merab Ninidze appears in the 7 th season of Homeland
Celebrated and internationally famous Georgian actor Merab Ninidze stars in the seventh season of the popular American TV series
Iconic Georgian actress Leila Abashidze passes away at the age of 88
Legendary Georgian artists Leila Abashidze passed away aged 88 on April 8. The actress was placed in the hospital with brain ischemic insult diagnosis few months earlier.
Georgian authors named among the world’s greatest poets on ranker.com
Who is the greatest poet of all time? Famous American website ranker. com is conducting the survey to reveal it.
American rock group Imagine Dragons to perform in Georgia in September
Imagine Dragons, popular American rock band from Las Vegas, Nevada, will hold concert in Georgia.
Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant to perform in Georgia on July 19, this summer
Yes, this is true! Robert Plant, lead singer of Legendary British rock group Led Zeppelin will visit Georgia this summer.
Historic artwork of Zdanevich Brothers destroyed in Tbilisi
The unique painting of Zdanevich Brothers in an old cellar located in one of the shopping spaces
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Exchange Rates
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
20.06.2018
21.06.2018
USD
1
USD
2.4561
2.4561
EUR
1
EUR
2.8363
2.8363
GBP
1
GBP
3.2330
3.2330
RUB
100
RUB
3.8355
3.8355
Other Stories
The success story of Georgian musicians goes beyond the country’s borders.
Gelati Monastery, a medieval monastic complex near Kutaisi, in the Imereti region of western Georgia,
Famous Italian duo Tale Of Us comprising of two Italian artists Carmine Conte and Matteo Milleri will perform in Tbilisi, Georgia.
Georgian Prima Balerina Nino Ananiashvili will perform the main part in Romeo and Juliet
Promising Georgian actor Irakli Kvirikadze has been featured in a trailer
National Georgian Ballet Sukhishvili (also known as Sukhishvilebi) have recently presented their new program
The European Film Promotion (EFP) presented the 10 best emerging actors from Europe
It is an ancient tradition in Georgia, yet very alive.
My Georgian Reality is the illustration series inspired by everyday life.
Many distinguished persons such as Alexandre Dumas, Knut Hamsun traveled to Tbilisi and were captivated by its diversity and beauty.
GEL Exchange
USD
1
USD
2.4561
EUR
1
EUR
2.8363
GBP
1
GBP
3.2330
RUB
100
RUB
3.8355
June 2018
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30