Nata Rioni

the art of tarot

About

Warm Welcome!

Hey there! Thank you for visiting my site – it means a world to me!

I’m an oil painter. I’ve been drawing and painting for as long as I remember myself. I am honoured to have had the opportunity to study with such amazing teachers and artists as Annie Domini, Erika Barillari, Helen Illichova, Peter Blundell and others.

For most of my life I’ve been predominantly painting portraits, though quite recently I’ve been rediscovering the joy of creating deeply mystical and spiritually meaningful still life and impressionistic art, often inspired by Tarot mythology and symbolism.

My family and I currently live in London, UK.

My Story

I took an artistic alias – Rioni – in honour of my brutally murdered ancestors.

My great-grandfather was just a little boy when both his parents died tragically, believed to have been executed by the Russian government. He was Georgian, born in Kutaisi, Georgia (back then a part of the Russian Empire, now an independent country). He was adopted and never knew his real name.

At some point he moved to Baku, Azerbaijan, where he started a family and two generations later I was born.

I was raised in a family searching for its roots. My father and aunt made numerous attempts to find out their granddad’s real birth name, but it remains a mystery to this day.

Rioni is a river that flows through Kutaisi city centre. I like to imagine that as a small child his parents took him for long walks along the banks of Rioni. I like to imagine that those were very happy days for them all.

While we are forever grateful to the people who adopted him, raised him and gave his name to him (and to the generations that followed), we don’t lose hope to one day find out his real Georgian family name.

Until that day, Rioni is a symbol of my lost, but not forgotten family story.

Image: Bagrati Cathedral on Rioni river, Kutaisi (Imereti, Georgia)

  • Hi, I'm Nata Rioni. I'm an oil painter creating Tarot-inspired artwork.

    Welcome to my website!