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Tudor Zbârnea’s paintings are more than just an artistic expression of concepts and emotions. They encourage an existentialist debate regarding the evolution of one’s identity and values in an inexplicable universe governed by chaos.
'Painting, the artist investigates unapparent details of a still-amorphous universe and makes the effort to discover -- in their intimacy -- the major routes from void to creation, from disorder to rigour and from darkness to light', the Romanian art historian Pavel Susara says.
The artist was born in 1955 in Nisporeni town. 80 kilometres west of Chisinau, Moldova's capital city. He graduated from Ilya Repin College of Fine Arts in Chisinau in 1981 and from the George Enescu University of Arts in Iasi, Romania, in 2001.
He was a founding member of the 'Zece' artistic group, which was created by ten leading Moldovan artists in opposition to the mentality of 'artistic vigilance', which they considered hostile to innovations in fine art.
In his modern expressionist’s voice, Zbârnea supports freedom of choice but also responsibility for the consequences of one’s acts. But his dialogue is well balanced and confined in a visual language that captivates the viewer with original composition and a chromatic palette resembling that of the frescoes in medieval Moldovan churches and monasteries.
'In our descent to the origins and symbols of humanity, the further we go, even if we follow a nationalist concept in art, the more common things become', the artist says.
A passion for depicting the mystery of life that emerges from chaos drives the artist to start his artistic expedition each time in a moment of clairvoyance, when his intuition of desired harmony is transferred from the virtual into action as from a latent existence into a reality show.
'When I am painting, I am leaving myself to my feelings and inner intuition', Zbârnea says. 'Art begins beyond any rules'.
Zbârnea’s attitude toward art is defined by his determination to shed light on knowledge that, he confesses, is never a burden for him.
Seen in their dynamic, the artist’s paintings have a slight degree of melancholy and a powerful impact of seemingly identifiable images. But he does not alter the form beyond recognition and rarely uses the contrast of colour and tone.
Zbârnea deliberately creates ambiguity and shadows. Through an impartial observation, and from his individual perspective, he sets as his goal helping the viewer understand which mechanisms organise things and how the spiritual overcomes the materialistic, rather than creating a situation of uncertainty.
He also presents a tuneful interdependence between the conceptual and the affective.
His paintings can be recognised by the presence of archaic symbols and local totems used by the artist as part of his modern and original aesthetic.