#stayECoCozyathome 🏠 with European Capital of Culture and The Department 'Culture, Archeology and Cultural Heritage' of the Municipality of Plovdiv

The initiative of Plovdiv European Capital of Culture #StayECOzyCinhome, in which the cultural institutes and operators from Plovdiv join resources, from today will be enriched with more new and interesting publications. The aim is while isolated in our homes to empower again part of the hundreds of events throughout the special 2019, with an outstanding examples of the history of theaters, museums and independent cultural operators in Plovdiv.

The Idea for inclusion of the local cultural institutes and operators came from the deputy mayor for Culture, Archeology and Tourism, Mr Plamen Panov. As already hundreds of museums, galleries, and theaters around the world, Plovdiv 2019 offers cultural content, art collections and filmed events through access to online platforms and channels.

Follow the websites and the social profiles of Plovdiv 2019 Foundation, Plovdiv Municipality, and the participating cultural operators for daily updates and news.  Links to social networks and platforms of Plovdiv 2019:

Every artist or cultural operator who would be interested to contribute to the initiative is welcome to send us link which to be included in the publications.

We are #TOGETHER in the fight for restriction of the spread of COVID-19 and we thank you all for your responsible behavior towards yours and the health of the society. Our teams remain available by phone, email and through our social networks.






From today the department 'Culture, Archeology and Cultural Heritage' of the Municipality of Plovdiv is becoming an active contributor to the initiative of Plovdiv 2019 #stayECoCozyathome 🏠 with European Capital of Culture, by offering access to paintings from its Fund.

‘The idea is to arouse the interest of the audience by taking a view on the creative biography and to tell interesting moments from the lives of beloved contemporary and classical painters,’ the department's experts say.

'My Aerial Artist'

The first author, with whom our initiative starts is the senior pillar of the modern Plovdiv School of Painting - Ivan Popovsky- Giovanni.

The 95-year-old artist is among the most popular artists in Plovdiv, where for already more than six decades, he works and enriches the artistic life of the city. Moreover, he is a longtime teacher of an entire galaxy of Plovdivian artists who are now renowned painters, architects and art critics such as Vassil Stoev, Stanimir Videv, Todor Shekerdzhiev, Georgi Lazarov, Silviya Vatakhova, Krissimir Linkov and many others.

Ivan Popovski was born in 1925 in the town of Knezha. Graduated Painting in the Art Academy in Sofia in the class of professors Iliya Petrov and Panayot Panayotov. Previously he has been a student of both the Italian artist Bruno Cordatti and Ivan Hristov, who had been his teachers at the Italian Royal High School in Plovdiv. He had been a teacher of painting in the Tsanko Lavrenov Art High School, as well as at the Lilyana Dimitrova School, the Pioneer Center, and at the University of Plovdiv. For many years, the artist has given private lessons and trained
dozens of young people wishing to continue their education in different institutions of arts. Ivan Popovski has been a member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists since 1960 and has been awarded the 'St. St. Cyril and Methodius' I st and II-nd degree medals and is a laureate of the Plovdivaward in 2001 as well as of several other national awards. He uses freely several foreign languages ​​- Italian, French and German.

An interesting detail of the biography of Ivan Popovsky is that before he indulged into painting, since a youngster, his passion are acrobatics and gymnastics. In his years in the Academy he has also been a performer in the Balkanski Circus. His teacher had been Dimitar Pironkov who nourished his big acrobatic talent and had trained Ivan for the world competitions and sports glory. " When I was a kid, my parents took me to a circus and I was very impressed
with the acrobatics of the circus artists. This had a huge impact on me and provoked my interest and I indulged in acrobatics. My professor at the academy, Iliya Petrov, even introduced me as 'my aerial artist'. As a student I performed in the circus, but the war prevented me from going to Europe as a gymnast. I still sometimes dream of doing acrobatics and pirouettes” Giovanni says.
Yet the huge love towards paining takes prevail and gradually Popovsky dedicates himself fully to it. Giovanni paints with equal passion both compositions, and landscapes, and portraits and and still life, but his soft point remains the depiction of the sea. “My blood is soaked in painting and I have to draw. My soft point is to paint the sea. It inspires me. I like to paint his various states, moods, harmonies and tonalities - sunsets, waves, boats, the surf…” says the artist.

These two photos present his interior compositions, which are characterized by his memorable style and the specific attitude towards the color that make the work of Ivan Popovsky - Giovanni recognizable, loved and appreciated.

Painting by Stanimir Videv

'… the orche breaks into sounds and becomes a motif of a fado...'

Stanimir Videv was born on March 27, 1957 in the village of Banya. He made his first steps in painting in the classes of another great Plovdiv artist - Ivan Popovsky-Giovanni, after which he graduated the Art High School in Kazanlak and the National Academy of Arts 'Nikolay Pavlovich'; with a major in painting in the class of Professor Dobri Dobrev. He is a member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists and has won numerous national and international awards such as the Plovdiv Award (1997 and 2007), the Vassil Levski National Award (1987), the Romfeya Award (1997), two-time winner of the Painting Prize of the Society of Plovdiv Artists (1986 and 1997), the Prizes for paiting of the Miniature Biennial in Rousse (2009), and the Small Forms Biennial in Pleven (2010) and many others. He lives and works in Plovdiv.
'I paint Plovdiv, the city where I live and try to capture its unique spirit. I look at my paintings and it's like looking out of my Old Town window. It influences me with his architectonics and colorful spots, and though I work within a specific plot and a specific architectural object, my aspiration is to capture that inimitable spiritual energy that has been layered over the centuries. I also like to paint trivial things like my studio, the chair I sit at, the desk I stare at every day… These are seemingly prosaic things, from which, however, many dramatic pictures can be obtained. There is no story or hidden meaning, I just paint my current state and try to turn my emotions into color, colors and color. I express my own emotions in my own way, and whther I will be understood, only God knows', shares the maestro.

Painting by Stanimir Videv

It is no coincidence that Stanimir Videv was born on the International Theater Day - it defines his character - an artist with a unique expressive style. His landscapes and figurative compositions masterfully combine abstract expressionism and subject matter depicted through the emotional gaze of the artist. Colorful cityscapes have become his trademark. The artist does not stop to paint the beloved Plovdiv.

His figurative compositions are also extremely popular, in which the exquisite feminine images, filled with a lot of passion, emotion and lyrical reverie, take center stage. 'Stanimir Videv unleashes and spreads his enormous talent by masterfully combining cold and warm, ocher and aquamarine to recreate delicate human silhouettes. Just as the swan's neck becomes a white question mark of beauty, Stanimir's paintings feature women with a swan's posture, dancing façades of hpuses, a lilac dusk – a mild sorrow of our inability to stay forever young, the orche breaks into sounds and becomes a motif of a fado... ' This is the poetically image of the work of Stanimir Videv by another great Plovdiv artist – the writer Nedyalko Slavov. Interesting personal moments about his life and work Stanimir Videv himself shares in the movie 'The Disappearig', a fragment of which you can see here (in Bulgarian): https://bit.ly/2RaZsJd.

Painting by Nedko Itinov

Nedko Itinov was born in 1956 in the city of Plovdiv. He graduated the Art High School in Kazanlak and Painting in the class of Prof. Terziev at“St. St. Cyril and Methodius” University of Veliko Tarnovo. Since 1986 he is a member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists. He lives and works in Plovdiv and has more than 30 solo and many group exhibitions in Bulgaria - Sofia, Plovdiv, Varna, Burgas and also abroad - Vienna, Istanbul, Paris, Luxembourg and Tel Aviv.
His paintings are in private collections in Bulgaria, Germany, England, Spain, France, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Serbia, New Zealand.

Nedko Itinov is one of the doyen of the Plovdiv School of Art. He works in the sphere of abstract decorative painting and creates his distinctive style, characterized by a specific composition and three-dimensional decorative figures. His characteristic plastic style enhances the effect of colours - orange-red, ochre, earthy brown, grey and muted greens are the colors that dominate his paintings. Peeping out from the compositions are facades of houses, distant domes of Italian churches and the soft curves of Plovdiv’s hills. Blue sapphire trees pop up in the foreground, bright spots of stylized buildings and trees stand out against a yellow or pink sky.
Italian plots are beloved by the artist, they fit his imagination and style and bring him back to Italy, which is for him an inexhaustible source of inspiration, as well as the hills of his Plovdiv. But speaking of a plot, we have to remember that in Nedko Itinov's painting there is no story - or rather the story is more a feeling or mood.

„The canvases are the building blocks“

Chavdar Pashev

Chavdar Pashev is one of the most non-standard Plovdiv artists who passed away at the age of 91 leaving a heritage of a remarkable works. The artist was born on 18.06.1928. in the village of Konush, Plovdiv region. He graduated in 1953 the Arts Acdemy in Sofia with a degree in painting in the class of Professor Panayot Panayotov. Chavdar Pashev's work is a whole universe, deep and multilayered, filled with immense wisdom and insights, turned to depths that for most people today seem like utopian chimeras.
You can see some of Chavdar Pashev's reflections on "the eternal and the infinite" here.

"A loner for some, harsh and hard-headed for others, a weird soul and a sage for others, in fact, very few people were allowed by the artist closer, and even fewer those who have had the pleasure of visiting his studio and peeking a moment through the open door. He rearly and with reluctance shares the process of creating a painting and only with people, provoked at an intuitive level, are joined with some kind of human tragedy or shared sadness. Occasionally and unwillingly he sells his works, no matter how big and tempting the offer is. He refuses to comply with the generally accepted notion of the purpose of culture. For Chavdar Pashev, the paintings brought to life by his hands are not only imaginative births, they are part of his existence, of the past, the worldview, the present and his future. It is like an old, wise cathedral that is self-sufficient. The canvases are the building blocks, and the knowledge, the experience, the revelation, the love, the talent are those loving affection that unites and elevates them in a magnificent, monumental building. A cathedral connecting the earthly, transitional world with the eternal and infinite." Dimitar Indzhov, a close friend and connoisseur of his work.

Painting by Atanas Hranov

„The halo is a mirror, in which you cannot see yourself“

Atanas Hranov was born in 1961 in Plovdiv. He graduated from the Art School in Kotel and in 1987 the National Academy of Arts in woodcarving within the class pf Professor Anton Donchev. He works in the field of plastic arts and painting, blending genres organically. The materials characterising the author are wood, handmade paper, canvas, bronze, silver and polymer plaster on a metal structure. He has more than 40 solo exhibitions, and numerous joint initiatives and curatorial projects. He has joint projects with the poets Vesselin Sariev and Alexander Sekulov. He has won the Plovdiv Award for Fine Arts and the Dyakov Gallery Award. He lives and works in Plovdiv.
In the collection of the Municipality of Plovdiv, the author is presented with paintings from the Halo series. 'The haloes are the letters of the story of the invisible that the Lord teaches us to pronounce with tired eyes. The halo is the vibrent air over our heads as the finger of God points on us. The halo is a bright frame in which darkness sleeps like a baby. The halo is a mirror, in which you cannot see yourself, but you are free to try all your life,' Atanas Hranov says.

With his elegant and mysterious style, the art of Atanas Hranov enlights many admirers. A masterful brush master and magician of colours, he creates beautiful and exciting puzzles where you can discover something new every day, depending on your mood and emotions. He never ceases to tell magic tales and to provoke us with the colours, shapes, the flora and the fauna of his rich imaginary worlds. In order to understand his paintings, you have to neglect Western rationality, go hand in hand with time, and enjoy a life that offers wandering and always exciting paths.

“Clouds and People”

Kolyo Karamfilov

Nikolay Iliev Karamfilov, a.k.a Kolyo Karamfilov, is one of the most unnconventional artists, expressing himself through all contemporary genres of visual arts - graphics, sculpture, painting, performance, installations, scenery for theatre productions and festival concerts, movie creator – such as the “Casablanca”, the soul of the company, agitating with a unique charisma, unadulterated mood and a hoarse voice all friends.
Kolyo Karamfilov was born on December 7, 1963 in Plovdiv. In 1982, he graduated scenography at the School of Art and still young but already awarded seceral prizes he was accepted to be a member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists. In 1989 he created the avant-garde group 'Rub' /Angle/ and was one of the ideologists of the artistic organization, along with art critic Dimitar Grozdanov and artists Monika Romenska, Albena Mihailova, Nadia Genova, Dimitar Mitovski, Emil Mirazchiev, Rumen Zhekov. In 1995, together with another member of the Rub group - Dimitar Mitovski, he founded the Disco 95 group, and in 2010 began the Merci project with Stefan Bozhkov. In 2008, he created the U.P.A.R.K. gallry in Plovdiv. He was the director and screenwriter of the film 'Casablanca', with which he won the Jameson Award for short film at Sofia Film Festival 2014. From 1983 until his death in 2014 he has made over 30 solo exhibitions and participated in numerous joint initiatives in Bulgaria and abroad. His works are owned by numerous private collections in Bulgaria and abroad. More important exhibitions abroad are at the Bulgarian Cultural Center - Moscow, 1998; Niigata - Japan, 1998; Aschau - Germany 2001, 2009; BCC Tokyo (Japan), 2003; Wittgenstein House - Austria, 2010; Serdika Gallery, Warsaw, 2010; BCC in Paris, 2010. Major Awards: 2004 Plovdiv Art Prize; 1997 received the Cite des
Arts, Paris scholarship. Kolyo Karamfilov left this world on January 12, 2014, only a month after he turned 50 in Plovdiv. Unforgettable will be the evenings where he stood behind the bar with a drink in his hand and played Sachmo's pieces in his fictional language. Kolyo Karamfilov's bright personality will remain forever in our memories with his unique artist talent, his captivating charisma, and Bohemian spirit.

Kolyo was an eclectic artist, but all he did carries a single seal called revelation. Because he was giving away without greed his rich personality ther is no a part of him in everyone who knew. He could make art literally from anything. From a school desk on which he would paint the face of his childhood friend or paint angels on furniture veneers. He could 'light' the asphalt to make an image out of it, sketch a girl sitting at the bar, sing some of his favorite jazz pieces on an English only he could understand, create scenery for theatrical productions, illustrate an eidition of Shakespeare’s sonnets, or travel virtually to the everdreamed Casablanca…
His last exhibition, marking his 50th birthday, he had as if destintely titled 'Clouds and People'; “The Clouds and People cycle is dedicated to the great old school of Plovdivian artists, which I had the honour to know, and who are sadly now already in heaven... Already in the clouds! But let the optimism continue in us!” This was the message of Kolyo Karamfilov, which he wanted to leave. This is what one of his closest friends, who is also no longer with us - director Plamen Panev said when he learned the news of Kolyo's death “I have never thought that the life can such unexpectedy leave the body of the liveliest and the most spiritual man among us. Kolyo brought meaning of every company and every creativity. He started every idea from a 100 degrees and burned like a festive fire. His whole life had been such a turbulent one, and he lived it terribly fast and terribly talented. He needed a lot of love and creativity. Everywhere he only had friends and no one to hate him. But he passed away with love, and without love, with
recognition, and without recognition. Kolyo was an extremely controversial person and left the trace of an angel.'



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