Manana Tsilikishvili – Normandy Beach, NJ
When I was born in Tbilisi, the Republic of Georgia was a satellite state of the USSR. Communist control often made daily life a challenge and constrained the art world. It discouraged new ideas and pushed artists towards traditional expression. However, I was fortunate enough as a young girl to have a schoolteacher who recognized my talent and encouraged me to express myself in line, form and color.
In order to support myself during young adulthood, I enrolled in the Light Industry Technical College and obtained a degree in textile manufacturing. I used the skills I acquired at the college to open fashion boutique. My ability to use color and form in design made the shop successful. Yet the boutique was not enough to quell my intense desire to paint. I yearned to experience artistic freedom, which America seemed to offer. In 1999, I came to the United States and was tremendously inspired by possibilities for art in this country. I rediscovered my love of fine art.
I found myself surrounded by a free artistic environment, new material, rich literature, incredible libraries, and museums. Using these new resources, I explored new techniques, often times teaching myself. Studying the likes of Jackson Pollock, Amedeo Modigliani, and Willem de Kooning, along with other masters, I began working with acrylics and oils. I honed my techniques and developed an individualistic, contemporary style. My work is now possessed by a spirit of freedom, which lives in a wonderful world of lines, forms, colors and symbolism textured by oils and other mixed media. Each piece of art is an honest and pure expression of various periods of my life; my paintings capture emotions from my heart and soul. Finally, they depict my experience of life, growing up in an repressive society and ending up in America; at times intense and dramatic, my style has also become feminine and uplifting.
Although I continue to develop as an artist, I have settled into my style and found an engaging audience on the East Coast. I have exhibited my works in locations around the tri-state area, including in Philadelphia and New York City. I am constantly searching for new opportunities for collaboration and engaging with new audiences and perspectives. I look forward to working with you.