Gigo Zaziashvili, a Georgian artist, was born into the family of Ivane Zaziashvili, a Georgian signboard painter. As a self-taught painter, Gigo Zaziashvili faced the adversity of poverty, which deprived him of a formal elementary education. His life took a turn at the age of 14 when he became an orphan. It was during this challenging period that he received crucial support from the accomplished painter Gigo Gabashvili, who played a pivotal role in helping the young artist establish himself as a professional and develop into a highly skilled master. This formative mentorship laid the foundation for his future success in the world of art.
Gigo Zaziashvili developed a strong connection with the realist painters of the 20th century, which further enriched his artistic journey. His artistic oeuvre became characterized by Georgian realistic pictorial motifs, reflecting the cultural and social themes of his homeland. While he excelled in creating genre paintings and portraits, his notable works extended to capturing the essence of prominent figures in Georgian culture, exemplified by his portraits of Zakaria Tchitchinadze (1909) and Ioseb Imedashvili (1910).
Among his remarkable genre paintings, notable works include “Darvish” (1911), “Wine Merchant” (1912), “Jew” (1919), “Miller” (1915), and others. His artistic influence also extended to the decoration of St. Nikoloz’s church in Chughureti, where his wall paintings adorn the interior.
In 1920, a significant milestone in Georgian art history was marked with the opening of the Georgian National Fine Arts Gallery in Tbilisi. Gigo Zaziashvili actively participated in the collection and acquisition of exhibits for this gallery, displaying a profound enthusiasm for the preservation and promotion of Georgian art. His efforts were not limited to the realm of Georgian art alone; he played a vital role in the discovery and acquisition of Persian enamel samples, and Niko Pirosmanashvili’s paintings.
In 1941, a memorable event took place at the Niko Pirosmanashvili house-museum, where a creative evening was held for painters. This gathering served as the backdrop for Gigo Zaziashvili’s personal exhibition.
Today, all Gigo Zaziashvili’s paintings are preserved at the Shalva Amiranashvili Museum of Fine Art.