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This paper aims to examine evolving of artistic forms, the ways of their manifestation and essential meanings that condition the process. This task will be accomplished through observation of a gradual transformation of specific themes and motives in Merab Abramishvili’s work, analysis of the artistic forms and interpreting of their meanings.
Abramishvili’s work is characterized by an insistent perfection of form and an intense quest for the equivalence between that form and its content. He continues his search until the form reflects completely and turns into an exact counterpart of the content. Each motive and image are developed in detail. Consequently, though it might not be so clear at first glance, the artistic form evolves in individual manner producing totally different depictions of the same objects. Furthermore, the artist not only uses the same motives but also focuses on the same images over the several years. The process of shaping the artistic language and essential meanings expressed through that language are inter-conditioned: the form (the image) becomes more specific in accordance with development of the world perception; on the other hand, the meanings are shaped in the process of creation. One observes a paradoxical coexistence of mutually exclusive features, including a vivid, convincing depiction that grows more and more distant from the model and becomes subject to a gradual shift from a vague image to a clear, distinct and vivid manifestation that remains within the framework of generalization. The late works of the artist are characterized by lightful, transparent colors that create a sense of space (spaciousness), as well as subtle tonal combinations created by applying only a few colors. In consequence of increasing specification of the image, late works also reveal a trend to separate a figure from the background simultaneously unifying these two elements by light.
One can say that the main theme of Abramishvili’s work is existentialism, and the main issue that interests the painter is life - not everyday life, but life in its existential dimension. That is why he appears fascinated by different forms of life – a phenomenon which is inevitably linked with death. In Abramishvili’s work it is comprehended through the understanding of death when endless struggles with it led to forming of his paradigm. Finally, the artist’s anxiety, observed in his early works, is transformed into an intensified sense of life, into a new world full of light and delight that is seen in his late paintings.