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Niko Pirosmani Oil Paintings

Niko Pirosmani

Niko Pirosmani (Pirosmanashvili) was from the east part of Georgia -- Kakheti, where live the most even-tempered and calm Georgians. They grow grapes and Kakheti is considered to be the motherland of the best Georgian wine.

Niko Pirosmani was born in 1862, possibly in May 5. His parents - Aslan Pirosmanashvili and Tekle Toklikishvili were farmers. They had couple of cows and oxes, the little vineyard, and were not poor and nor rich. His father was big fairy-tale admirer, and both they worked hard were devoted to the family and were happy together. They had three children, two daughters - Mariam and Pepe and the youngest Niko.

But in 1870 his father caught cold and died, so their short term family happiness ended there. That happiness and love to his relatives is obvious from his pictures - on painting "Rtveli - Picking Grapes", you see a woman and a man, possibly that is how his parents were - working all the time, or painting "Mother and Son" could be only inspired with his sweet dream about mother, and similar "Father and Son". Child on both of these pictures is obviously the same. But with the death of his father that idle and happy life ends and in his paintings start to penetrate more dark and gloomy colors, children are sad, and women pictured on them is bent under the pressure of hard work. On the picture "Georgian Women With Children" a woman holds on a heavy jar of water on her back, little girl and boy, who stops on each step and looks behind, women tries to hold him and keep his pace. Niko was nice boy, he worked from early childhood to help his mother as much as he could.

Niko painted his sister Mariam, her husband bought her an umbrella and nice hat - "A Woman With Flower and An Umbrella". When he was 8 Mariam's husband took him to Tbilisi to ease his mother's life and keep company for his sister, he had good life there with Mariam, but soon she got seek during epidemic of cholera in Tbilisi and died. Her husband didn't care much about child and he gave him to Kalantarov's family to live with them and serve them at the table.

In that family Niko was loved and treated well. His duties were to boil 'samovar' (a big pot to boil the water), bring water and wash the dishes. Niko learned to read and write in that home, he was smart boy, he loved to read books and paint, he painted all the walls in his room. Already from his childhood he didn't care about material things, he was all in the creative work. They loved him in that family, he was devoted and honest, and they would trust him everything. Also he had very good gift of declamation, and often diverted children from the neighborhood with fairy tales, painting in the same time on the walls what he was telling.

Later he lived in another family, working there as a servant as well. He was treated well there too. When he became young man he fall in love with his land-lady - Elizabeth (she was widow). Possibly she was fond of him too, but she kept that secret that was not satisfactory for Niko, he wanted to marry her. According memoirs of Solomon - Elizabeth's son Niko wrote her letter asking to marry him - "I'm well aware that there is a big gap between us and our positions, but I know that you are prominent and educated woman and I hope you won't pay that much attention and will accept my proposal. I assure you - my love to you is the most sincere and dearest." But soon everybody get to know about their love affair and he had to leave Elizabeth's house. After that he started independent life.

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