Despite the fact that in the 19th century Russia occupied Georgia, the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century was very productive for Tbilisi. I love the architecture and art of that time and the places that can talk about it. Such a place is the Lado Gudiashvili Exhibition Hall.
Lado Gudiashvili was a famous Georgian painter. He is seen as a symbol of freedom and individualism who managed to remain true to his own principles and to himself during the Soviet regime and Social realism.
Lado Gudiashvili was born in 1896 in Tbilisi. During the period of studying at art school he was inspired by the medieval murals and was often traveling in various regions of Georgia to visit the old churches. His first period was inspired by the festive atmosphere of his hometown and its exotic inhabitants. Tbilisi was called “Paris of the East” and one could get any kind of earthly pleasure in this city. Of course we were famous for our Georgian feasts and one could see these themes in Gudiashvili’s works before Paris — in 1920 he went to Paris and in Café La Rotonde made the acquaintance of Picasso and Modigliani.
He spent 6 years there and participated in group exhibitions as well as had his own personal exhibitions. Paris was promising but he could not live without Tbilisi. He came back in 1926 and in a country with a totalitarian regime he painted Kashueti Church (Rustaveli Avenue) in 1946. That’s exactly who Lado Gudiashvili was!