Maia Tabaka’s pearls of painting in “Mans’s” gallery

Maia Tabaka’s pearls of painting in “Mans’s” gallery
Maia Tabaka’s pearls of painting in “Mans’s” gallery

In the gallery “Mans’s” Maijas Tabaka’s solo exhibition “Idomu prieks” is on view. It is adapted to the 85th anniversary of the artist. This year, in anticipation of the anniversary, M. Tabaka’s works have already been shown in Tallinn at the modern art museum “Kumu” and in two art museums in Vilnius. Well, they can also be seen in Jēkabpils.

Having become popular in the seventies, the artist has maintained interest in her works until today, when her 85th anniversary is approaching. Generations have changed, but her works and special painting techniques are relevant even today. “The internal tension of Maija Tabaka’s works has continued to grow. Sometimes a limit is reached, at which emotions become a fever and the beautiful – the destructive. The real world merges with what the artist sees in the anti-world. The radiation of the anxiety-filled paintings seemed heavy and tragic to not only one person. They are beautiful pictures only in a superficial view. Many consider Maijas Tabaka’s works as eternal celebrations, optimistic gardens of joy. A more sensitive observer will rather feel uneasy. Rather, there is an unfulfilled longing for happiness, a projection of dreams, the action takes place in the rarefied air of the beyond, in beautifully decorated deserts of mirages. Gorgeous gardens and bosoms of flowers seem to give off a dangerous whiff. (..) Each of Maija Tabaka’s paintings is a dream of an imaginary life, and each of her characters looks into the infinity of eternity. Just like Maija Tabaka herself,” wrote Imants Lancmanis in 2004.

But the artist herself said at the beginning of the 80s: «Who would I be without my art? I do not know! Art has given me everything I have achieved in life!”.

“Mans’s” gallery’s cooperation with M. Tabak began more than 30 years ago. At that time, the popular painter trusted the young provincial gallerist Uldis Chamans, who in turn did not shy away from asking the icon of painting for works, and set aside her paintings for exhibitions. Each “Great Summer Exhibition” has featured one of her works. The solo exhibitions «Event» (1993) and «Jūtu laiks» (2020) were an event in the cultural life of Jēkabpils. The most ambitious is this – the third one, which will be on display in the gallery until June 25. 80 works created between 1977 and 2024 are exhibited. The artist herself offers them for the solo exhibition, but paintings from the Latvian National Museum of Art can also be viewed – works from the early 90s “Pond”, “King of the Gypsies”, “White Gypsies”, the chronomatic “Birch Grove” with Regina Razum and in West Berlin in the distant 1977 created by “Tina”. The Museum of the Union of Artists of Latvia has selected the paintings “Sad Regīna”, “People in the City” and “Mother’s Brother” for a personal exhibition, while the art center “Zuzeum” is represented by the works “Gypsies at night”, “Up on the cliff”, “Abduction of Europe”. Portrait of Gundega Repše”, “Līgo svetki in Old Riga” and others. Several works are also from the gallery «Mans’s» collection. The fact that several respectable art repositories have allocated works in their possession to this exhibition speaks volumes for both the gallery’s prestige and the hard work of its staff.

“While preparing the exhibition, I called the artist every week. I was surprised by her intelligence, modern mind and interest in contemporary art developments. In her art, I see a dynamic representation of life’s moments. Maija is an artist who is always easy and pleasant to communicate with. In her essence, she is a simple person and at the same time a spirited aristocrat who is in art with all her heart and soul. Despite her respectable years and hard experiences, Maija Tabaka still paints every day. Her solo exhibition is a big event for the gallery. Hopefully, it will be like that for the audience as well», says the manager of the gallery, Uldis Chamans.

The name of the personal exhibition «Idomu prieks» was not given by the artist, but invented by the gallery manager U. Chaman. “M. Tobacco has its own pathfinder in art. She depicts the real world only in an imaginary image system known to her. Her fantasy world is full of joy, it is extremely colorful and has a unique color. The measure of the joy of an artist’s imagination is professional ability and eternal spirituality», says U. Chamans.

And once again Imants Lancmanis about Maija Tabaka: «She managed to continue the great and high artistic tradition that we know in the painting of previous centuries. She has preserved the brilliance of the former artistic school, working without tricks, tricks and technical means, which are usually resorted to by Western European artists who no longer manage their professional arsenal of weapons and rush unprepared into the field of figurative painting dictated by fashion. It is expected that, despite the relativism of contemporary values, Maija Tabaka will more and more definitely take her rightful place on the European art scene and in art history.”

The exhibition in the «Mans’s» gallery will be open until June 25.

The article is in Latvian

Tags: Maia Tabakas pearls painting Manss gallery


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