Esma Oniani was a prominent Georgian Painter, Poet, and Artist. In 1963 she graduated from Tbilisi Academy of Fine Arts. Her graduation work The School-Leavers was highly praised and was sent to the student exhibition in Moscow. She participated in numerous all-Union, Caucasian and republican exhibitions, also worked as an artistic director in the State TV Company and taught painting in the Academy of Fine Arts. She illustrated many books, among them Erlom Akhvlediani’s book for children The Story of a Lazy Mouse. Her poems and essays were first published in 1968 causing a sensation in then Soviet society, with its brave images and extremely open dialogues about such tabooed topics as religion and seeking of soul, erotic poetry and odes dedicated to motherland. Though several poetry collections of Esma Oniani had been published, she was widely acclaimed for her visual art, rather than poetry, her verses were mostly circulating in literary salons. In 1982 she was awarded the medal of the Artists’ Union for Davit Kakabadze’s Portrait. In 2000 she posthumously received the Georgian State Prize.
Date of Birth/Death1938-1999Share