The theatre and movie is an imaginary reality itself, flexible and attached to an exact story line at the same time, this is why the special mind, intuition and talent is required for creation of a tangible space for this abstract world. The main character of our Monday Inspiration today is Petre Otskheli, who is an outstanding, but not limited individual with all the listed professional skills.
Perte Orskheli is the founder of Georgian stenography, as a professional field.
His biography is interesting as well. It even looks like a plot for a book or a play. Petre was born in Kutaisi. His wealthy family has moved to Moscow in 1914 and Petre was sent to French school. His mother used to take her children to the theatre rather often, probably this is when the artist was poisoned with this world. He used to cut our small figures and decorations from the piece of cardboard. He had succeed young, by the end of 1920s the artist born in 1907 had already designed the costumes and scenic decorations for many performances. He was a student of Tbilisi Academy of Arts, when prepared his first work in theater and was noticed by Kote Marjanishvili – the very famous Georgian theatre director at that time and till now. They worked at Kutaisi national drama theater together, in Tbilisi and Moscow influential theaters that time. Petre was a progressively thinking and socially active person. He was accused for forming of terroristic organization in 1937 at the age of 30 and as it had usually happen during Joseph Stalin’s Great Purge was put to death.
The facts and details from the artist’s personal life after childhood are not left, though it’s not difficult to fill the carrier reach with adventures with a personal story with the help of our imagination.
Let’s move to the works themselves.
No doubt, that the distinguished Georgian modernist could perceive the space of scene correctly and reach the gist of the drama. These skills together with his artistic gift gives us the genius art works as a result. In case of the scenic decoration – the organization and planning is done with the reasonableness and estimation characterized to an architect. Besides of the visual effect the structure of the decoration is always though out and logically sorted. The colors and tone gamma is preconditioned by the essence of the film or scenic play and exact mood of the scene or episode, though in his sketches it is well balanced. The lighting is always considered in each of his works. This is why the paintings are mostly done on the black or some other dark background with the exact directed light. The line is clear and concrete without fail.
As for the costumes, first of all the manner of the human body performance must be underline and only after that the closing reviewed. The plastics is always adequate to the nature of the character. The body parts are not exaggerated too much, the relevant effect is got with the help of the movement and pose. The characters drawn by Otskheli, dressed in different costumes, for instance the “Winged Painter” from film or “Othello” from the theater play, can be compared with modern Hollywood heroes with their temper and spirit, holding the similar energy in themselves. This fact demonstrates how progressive Petre’s art was for his time.
The constructivist worked in Tbilisi in the beginning of XX century, the city which was the centre of avant-garde art. This is the time when the artists became free from the formality at the moment of the invention of photography. This is a time of Lado Gudiashvili, Kirill Zdanevich, Pirosmani and Elene Akhvlediani.
Nowadays the biggest part of works by Petre Otskheli are preserved in the Art Palace – Georgian state museum of theatre, music, cinema and choreography.
Author: Tata Alkhazashvili