During the first decade of this millennium, painter Pancho Malezanov was a regular guest at the Jazz, Funk and Soul concerts we organized back then. He gave one of his pictures to Soul singer Al Jarreau, thanking him for the inspiration through music. Since I saw Pancho for the first time, at the first gig we ever did in Sofia, his work and career have evolved. That’s for sure. Today he was back on his home turf, exhibiting some of his stunning art work in Sofia’s Geo Milev quarter.
The 52-year old started developing his own style, after graduating from Sofia Art School in 1984, in communist Bulgaria. Without wanting or being able to drift-off into extremely intellectual art language, I would say his style is fresh, definitely funky and very distinctive. To put it in layman’s terms: His colours have Meditarranean tendencies, while his approach to contouring is very inventive as well as unique. Pancho Malezanov seems to be looking for art in nature and design. He does not care whether it is a flock of flamingos or a Citroën H-Van, as long as the object is beautiful. Then he interprets the object, adding his art to the existing art. That way, his pictures become art in art.
Improvisation, but also interpretation are the main ingredients for Jazz, which Pancho names as one of his big influences. The other one is love. This is no big surprise, since it shows. Viewers at his exhibitions notice, and so do famous galleries in Western European capitals. He flies to London so often, that one day he might meet himself at Gatwick or Heathrow.
Pancho Malezanov is one of today’s first-rate artists in Bulgaria and Europe. Plus he is a very kind guy.