Blesok no. 113, May-June, 2017
From: Expressionism in Macedonian Painting…
(Кродо, Скопје, 2007, pp. 91-93)
From: Expressionism in Macedonian Painting (In the Context of Expressionism as Permanent Artistic Occurrence)
Vladimir Georgievski became involved in art in 1968 when he graduated from the art academy in Belgrade, where he also completed his graduate studies. Georgievski is a rate type of artist. He is a man who has become a living library of valuable and qualified words, sounds, images, constructions on the “integral pain… of man under the stars” (Клетников, catalogue 1995). Archaic, literary painting? Yes! And of the best kind of great masters both for all artistic elements and the visions that are possible only with a master who has opened a round table to religion, philosophy, literature, music and painting. Georgievski has constantly moved to the desired absolute painting. Just like that, Georgievski has included all round table orators in his painting and nobody bothers anybody. Let us break his painting to its parts, such as: Entry to Jerusalem (1994/95), Pieta (1993), Don Quixote in Macedonia (1992), He (1993), The Demon (1994), Mocking of Jesus (1988), Requiem (1987), Wedding (1987), Golden Autumn (1983), Monastery Night (1988) and you will understand the old age, archaic character and the currency of the integral pain and you shall see the absolute painting that has opened itself to the painting e, including our own. The scope that should be covered with one’s eye and mind, unconditionally with our heart and blood demands a lot since it offers a lot. It is of course shocking, and it can of course not be placed in any of the styles, which is not an issue of the public, but of the profession. It slips away from the classification in style drawers, and it does not confuse. A personal experience, during a careful and I would say thorough visit to his studio by an experienced commissioner of Drouot auction house from Paris, Mr. Claude Robert, following a comprehensive review of his paintings, which he had previously studied via numerous reproduction, stated that “this is hard art for most of the people, but I am certain of one thing, that these paintings would one day, sometimes, maybe even in our time, end in the big museums”. This is because Georgievski is also a classy painter and thinker and a dedicated spiritual man, and because he is close to Goya’s thought that “Fantasy abandoned by reason produces impossible monsters: united with her (reason) she (fantasy) is the mother of the arts and the origin of their marvels”.
There is a good opportunity to check these paintings in the context of the absolute painting and in the context of the integral pain under the stars. Reading Nietzsche who announced the emptiness of God and Skies, reading the agronic and tragic feelings of Christianity and life of Unamuno, reading Dostoyevsky – especially important for Georgievski, reading Swedenborg’s discussions with the angels, Dante’s, or listening to Beethoven’s, Bach’s, Mozart’s music, traveling with those who bridge human civilizations such as Spengler, Hamvas, Michelangelo, Renaissance and Byzantine painting, Van Gogh, El Greco, all of this living with words, sounds, paintings of these masters as you look at Georgievski’s paintings, functions and builds up on each other.
The expressionism in the paintings functions in all layers: colors, drawing, rhythm, drama in the composition of art and thought.
The composition compactness in the upper part of Georgievski’s paintings where the sky perspective is missing is quite well read by the poet and art critic Eftim Kletnikov, who has been following an interpreting his painting for quite a long time and in a precise manner: “It is a philosophy of rethinking of the existential destiny of the man in the new century civilization, who has abandoned God without finding an adequate replacement and comfort for this tragic loss. Without God, on the other hand, the horizon of hope is also lowered so much that one can only peek at hell and its door to crying thorough its crack” (Ефтим Клетников, catalogue 1995). The horizon has lowered for at least two thousand years, and Christ with Georgievski is probably as old as that. If he is not that old, then he has to be an eternal old man, and if Christ is an image of the situation of humanity, as he has become an image of his future at the moments when it mocked and crucified him, then it can be a magnificent metaphor of the long exhaustion of humanity which it finds difficult to wake up from. If Christ died because of humanity sins, then the fact that Christ has been sunk in the two thousand yearlong sins of the world is understandable. One needs robustness, hypertrophy of his feet, muscles, arms and eyes to walk, sustain and see that path. And that is how they have been painted by Georgievski.
The two archetypes with Georgievski have also been precisely set: Expulsion from Heaven and Golgotha.
The resolution of both archetypes is still on-going, and as a drama of the world sorrow, it has been set in the Great Inquisitor with Dostoyevsky, on why and who cancelled it, and in this way the expulsion and Golgotha of Christ. And why did those who had committed it – the people, then voluntarily entered the Golgotha path that is still on-going. If Dostoyevsky is only dark and nothing else, then Georgievski is also like that. However, it is not like that, with any of them. Man is conscious and he makes decisions. Dostoyevsky has told about his decision, and Georgievski has painted it. Quite identically, but with psychoanalysis style, this is also described by Jung. As artistic visions, thought metaphors, this are quite realistic stories and paintings by persons who use the same alphabet and words as all people, and with the same colors and lines and all people. But their order of words is special and this is where the secret of great spirits which in a short story, in a painting, touch upon all chapters of the life.
Georgievski’s expressionism cannot be defined in a specific template. However, he has his features which mark his painting as his authentic stamp. It is the mentioned robustness of the long path, and the broad sculpture and Baroque dramatic color use, which shake the psyche. It is the tense rhythmical drawing that functions like in the robust trees, “full of the memory of the pain and existential human agony” (Ефтим Клетников, the same catalogue), and a melancholy that announces that the contemplativeness of the exit from agony has not been quite put to sleep, which reminds us of Durer and El Greco (He – 1993, Don Quixote in Macedonia – 1992, and the images of Christ). His paintings are always in the night atmosphere. As if the artists wanted to make it easier to the tortured figures at least when it comes to their bodies, because “the night takes away the body and the day the soul”. Vladimir Georgievski brings in a strong engagement in his painting, with an artistically implemented response to time which is complete and typical for Macedonian expressionism. The involvement of this kind, done without any deviation from the completely implemented artistic masterly skill. “Any spiritual art presupposes a strict school” is something that is fully demonstrated by Georgievski. This is what can be considered a special feature of the Macedonian expressionism.
The topics of Georgievski’s painting are spiritual models with anthropological presence: man, bread, old men, masters, expulsion from Heaven, Golgotha, crucifixions, resurrection of Christ, Don Quixote, through a common sign of existence being dramatic and tragic. This is painting of all past and upfront destroyed utopias for humanizing humanity, without which there is no meaning in life or art. The absence of this beauty that has not appeared, is presented by this painting as a tragic emptiness inside man. That is why this is expressionism about the spiritual image of time, unlike the previously psychological, neurotically tense existential image, which has started with the German expressionism. Still, we can sublime the healthy messages of this painting: crucifixion is human activity, resurrection is the divine filling inside men.
The gypsum sculpture which are a reflection of the same artistic style are unique as individual works as well, and especially as a whole which appears cathartic but also shocking in the iconostasis setting. This striking work remains not understood in a non-understandable way; it should have been built in some of the walls of the museums, galleries or cultural institutions. With this work and this vision, this is a capital sculptural ensemble in the Macedonian art.