Art for Inspiration – Arshile Gorky.

Born Vostanik Adoian, Arshile Gorky brought beauty to the world through his paintings. Of Armenian heritage, Mr. Gorky survived the Armenian Genocide, witnessing the systemic mass murder of his people by Turkish troops. After severe food deprivation, his mother passed away from starvation. Through all these tragic events, Arshile Gorky was able to persevere and show us how potentially resilient we all can be. Anyone can find his art for inspiration in their own life.

Dark Green Painting

Dark Green Painting. One of Arshile Gorky’s last paintings (1948), the dark colors are somber. There is a glimmer of hope within the sad mood. The fragmented shapes form a sort of unity, where each area is linked with one another either through color or structure. A great lesson to be learned here is that no matter what mood you are in, be honest with your feelings inside and share it with the world. Try to bring a variety of moods though, because creating a specific sad emotion throughout the composition might be healing to you, but can bring damage to others. Luckily, even through darkness, there is light in this creation. Arshile Gorky did not shy away from creating a work that was honest, but he also allowed moments of joy within the Dark Green Painting. Art for inspiration can bring out many emotions. One does not always have to be inspired by something beautiful.

The Aroma (Scent) of Apricots in the Fields

The Aroma (Scent) of Apricots in the Fields. The Aroma (Scent) of Apricots in the Fields was painted by Arshile Gorky in 1944. The predominant pulsating colors of orange and red fill the canvas, expressing a vibrant energy mixed with a somewhat melancholic moment in time inspired by his Armenian roots. What makes this painting great is his ability to create a tamed mood with bright colors. Mr. Gorky found ways to create several opposite moods in one composition, just like his ancestors were able to compose music in a minor key, while having a dancing, optimistic pulse. While sadness, due to history, is prevalent in most Armenian works, the capability to rise up and produce expressive hope definitely brings inspiration to those that notice. In this amazing work, Arshile Gorky finds a way to do the opposite: tame the bombastic colors. The lyrical tendency in this masterpiece, intertwined with his rigid forms from within, combines two polar opposite ideas: post-impressionism and surrealism. It is ideal to have the knowledge and expertise to combine various moods and schools of practice inside one creative art form. The depth becomes even more apparent.

Art for inspiration can be created through words as well. Here are some motivational quotes by Arshile Gorky:

1. When something is finished, that means it’s dead, doesn’t it? I believe in everlastingness. I never finish a painting – I just stop working on it for a while.

2. “Art must always remain earnest… Art must be serious, no sarcasm, comedy. One does not laugh at a loved one.

3. “My recollections of Armenia open new visions for me. My art is therefore a growth art where forms, pines, shapes, memories of Armenia germinate, breathe, expand and contract, multiply and thereby create new paths for exploration.

Check out my article about The Promise.