Today, it is not easy to comprehend and understand the scale of personality of Ivan Kavaleridze, the artist, sculptor, artist, director, playwright.
Born in a small village on the Romny region in a family of refugees from Russia’s expansion into the Caucasus.
Since childhood he had abilities in art, in his 24 years, talented artist Ivan Kavaleridze became the author of the sculpture of Princess Olga in Kyiv. Having a Georgian roots, the artist lived in Ukrainian history and culture, which is why the sculptural composition is executed in the form of a trident, a symbol of the statehood of Prince Volodymyr. In the middle of the composition is depicted Princess Olga, the grandmother of Prince Volodymyr, and the first representative of the ruling elite of Kievan state, who accepted Christianity as a civilized choice of the development of contemporary states. Along with Olga’s right hand, the apostle Andrew, a disciple of Jesus, is the man who, according to legend, brought Christianity to Kyiv lands. In the left hand of the Grand Duchess, Cyril and Methodius, as people who brought literacy and enlightenment.
Shalapin, Rodin, Shevchenko
During his studies in Kiev, the artist met with Fedor Shalyapin, and when studying in France, he had an acquaintance with the great sculptor Rodin. After World War I, Kavaleridze returned to Romny, where he created several famous sculptures, and was also the creator and director of the almost professional Romanian theater, which acted throughout Ukraine. One of the outstanding sculptures of the authorship of Kavaleridze is the monument to Kobzar Taras Shevchenko. It should be noted that this is the world’s first monumental monument to Shevchenko. The sculpture was constructed of concrete, and subsequently began to collapse, after which the reconstruction of the bronze world was quite successful.
In a few years, the sculptor Kavaleridze created another monument to Kobzarov in Poltava. Performed in the style of Constructivism (very close to Cubism), different from Romny’s work, but in both works the kobzar seemed to be carved out of stone. Also a monument to Shevchenko was installed in Sumy. Performed in the style of cubism, the sculpture of the poet, not liked the communists, and not preserved to our day.
The artist was also the author of the monument to Bohdan Khmelnytsky in Chernihiv, the monuments to Grigory Skovoroda in Lokhvytsia and Kiev, the monument to Artem, and his project created a sculpture by Yaroslav the Wise in Kyiv.
Continuing the theme of monuments, one can not help but mention the sculptures of Prometheus, and the Labor Exempt, the works of Kavaleridze, and they are set on the Boulevard of Liberty in the city of Romny.
The outstanding cinematographer Kavaleridze worked at the studio of Dovzhenko, and created several world-class films, such as: Dusts, Prometheus, Povia, Gregory Skovoroda, Koliivshchina …
Ivan Kavaleridze, left behind a great cultural heritage, is an indisputable example of how one person can combine such a number of artistic qualities and talents. Without a list of looking at this great artist who lived in the 20th century, and studying his biography and experience, we can call him Renaissance man.