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Georges Terzian was born in Marseille in 1939, to parents of Armenian descent. His family had left their homeland for Russia at the start of the 20th century, although they would then settle in France shortly before the artist’s birth. Georges took an early interest in drawing and painting, and his parents therefore encouraged him to join the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Marseilles at the age of fourteen. From a studio in Sainte-Miter, he would experiment with impressionist techniques en plein air in the Provençal countryside, working in gouache and oils in a manner reminiscent of Cèzanne, continually honing his technique. Yet Terzian was clearly a man with an eclectic taste which ran beyond his skill as an artist. In the midst of his studies in art school, Terzian discovered a love of boot making, which prompted him to interrupt his education for over a year while he studied the craft. When he moved to Paris at 20, he also elected to study music, and took lessons from the famous singer Jean Lumière. In fact, while his style began to transition towards cubism in the early 1960s, it was his job as a cabaret singer which would support the young artist financially. It is easy to see Terzian’s polymathic nature in his mature paintings, which draw from a wide range of styles and cultures to create their inimitable modernist feel. His musical studies in particular bring a symphonic, lyrical quality to his works reminiscent of artists such as Kandinsky. As an artist, Terzian is perhaps best known for his cubist imagery, which synthesises the work of Picasso, Braque and Leger while maintaining a personal style. He iconography also draws on the North African cultures Terzian interacted with during his many stays there, alongside Russian constructivist motifs from his time living in Moscow. Georges Terzian still lives in Paris to this day, and he continues to paint and sell his works into his eighties. Following a one-man exhibition of his work at the Parisian Giovanni gallery in 2007 his works have become increasingly well-known on the international stage. The public interest in his works has also led to his much rarer early works gaining a particular popularity.


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