Sopho Chkhikvadze : Gazing

Compass Gallery is proud to present the debut exhibition of Georgian-born painter Sopho Chkhikvadze.

When Sopho first walked into the gallery with a bundle of rolled up canvases, we knew immediately that her work was exciting, skilful, imaginative and definitely of interest to us. Since then, we have been exhibiting her work in both Compass Gallery and at the London Art Fair. Living and working in the UK, she came with an already international reputation, several awards and work in museums and private collections in Moscow and throughout Europe. She has twice been shortlisted for the BP Portrait Award.

Sopho is a fine narrator. Each of her paintings has a particular view of everyday life and humanity, which takes as its starting point the experience of the human subject. She invites us to gaze at her enigmatic portrayals of figures in everyday situations, somewhat like looking into a personal photograph album - like a snapshot from a camera. Gazing is different from glancing or watching. Looking back is perhaps a substitute for the desire to return to living in a familiar space of loving and caring. Her childlike but adult people gaze back at us. There is humour, tenderness and intensity of memories of a place of blissful existence, “cared for, cared about”, but now in the world of adult grownups. However they are without sentimentality. A powerful, imaginative figurative painter, she brings to her work a magical translucency, charm and quality with a contemporary reflective story woven into her enigmatic images.

Supremely skilled in her craft, her surfaces are layered, scraped back, worked into until they are polished almost like marble. Her painting technique is equally accomplished whether on a miniature scale or a monumental canvas.

Like many of the artists that Compass has built a reputation for supporting, her work reflects her social, cultural and political background, bringing a refreshingly individual vision and approach without wavering from the traditional art and craft of painting. Through focusing on these established skills of fine art, Compass aims to educate, enrich, inspire and influence art lovers, collectors, cultural audiences and the vibrant community of artists within Glasgow and further afield.

Sopho’s works are held in the Moscow Museum of Modern Art and the Muzeum Montanelli, Prague and in numerous public and private collections throughout Europe and the UK. Awards include the Ministry of Culture of Georgia Award and the Tsinandali Prize for a Young Georgian Artist. Twice shortlisted for the BP Portrait Award.

11 October - 1 November 2019.