'Bathers' vintage 1977 abstract surrealist oil painting by Nikolay Nikov - 'NICHE' from his series 'Bodies'
common subject used in art throughout history by artists such as Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Cézanne, Matisse, Gauguin, Picasso has been the depiction of nude bathers. it has a number of meanings associated with it as common as ablution, cleanliness, and the act of washing in water, but it also invoked themes such as death, voyeurism, fertility, renewal, purification, healing, birth, or tears
interpolating from his bold abstract sensual shapes of nude bodies morphing into fluid circular forms at the beginning of the 1970's towards the end of the decade Nikov reverts back to more stylized 'modern' realism
here the nude bodies of the bathers have evolved into focus with rudimentary Modigliani shapes and forms against a waterfall of pink invoking romance, intimacy, femininity & love. The play of objective versus subjective point of view and duality on each bather is subtly represented in the choices of palette used where detached objectivity is expressed in choices of avocado and lime greens and the subjective in the more warmer or positive red palette
following in the evolutionary steps in modern art giants such as Hans Arp, Joan Miro and Calder, Picasso, Nikov explores the relations of object and shadow in his 'Bodies' series
oil on board
signed and dated
dimensions: 21" x 16"
Nikolay Nikov, called Nicheto by everybody, was born in Sofia, Bulgaria in 1924
his versatile style developed from his beginnings at a French art school in Paris to his repatriation in Sofia; Bulgaria in the early 60's amidst the harsh years of socialism. Nikov's rise to prominence culminates with the highest honor of having one of his flower paintings made into a national post stamp in the mid 70's. Belated tendencies of the French and German Abstract Expressionism movements of the turn of the century could be found in his early works and later interpretations of styles ranging from Modernism to Soviet Non-Conformism are skillfully woven into an own original style
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