Tbilisi-based artwork lab confirms authenticity of iconic Pirosmani painting

Minister Thea Tsulukiani said the laboratory had conducted a "comprehensive analysis" of the painting Deer from a private collection. Photo: Culture Ministry press office 

Agenda.ge, 24 Jan 2024 - 14:28, Tbilisi,Georgia

The recently inaugurated Irakli Parjiani Artwork Research and Expertise Laboratory, a venue specialising in examination of artworks, has officially validated the authenticity of a painting by Niko Pirosmani, the iconic self-taught Georgian artist of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Culture Minister Thea Tsulukiani announced on Wednesday.

Tsulukiani said the laboratory had conducted a "comprehensive analysis" of the painting Deer - from a private collection - with the results “conclusively affirming” its attribution to the renowned artist.

The Minister also highlighted the significance of the high-tech expert laboratory, launched in July as the first of its kind in the country, and pointed out it provided “swift and irrefutable evidence” over authenticity of artworks unlike time-consuming procedures used in the past for verifying the authorship of creations.

The confirmation was made for the work by Pirosmani, who was born in the village of Mirzaani in eastern Georgia’s Kakheti province in 1862 and developed an early interest in painting, although he never underwent formal art training.

Relocating to the capital Tbilisi, he sustained himself by creating paintings for shop plaques, portraits, and landscapes for bar owners. Despite his prolific output, he struggled in poverty throughout his life in Georgia's capital, facing difficulties in securing employment opportunities.

The discovery of his works by prominent artists Lado Gudiashvili, David Kakabadze and Kirill Zdanevich eventually led to the artist gaining recognition in the early decades of the 20th century first within the domestic art scene, before his name becoming known internationally.