John Wurdeman holding grapes
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The American with the other Georgia on his mind

American artist John H Wurdeman was drawn to the former Soviet state of Georgia by the country's folk music. Sixteen years later he is still living there, immersed in a culture he says is full of tradition and emotion.

Georgia is a place of "very real tears but also very genuine laughter", says the impressionist painter, 37, who trained at the Surikov Institute in Moscow, Russia.

Wurdeman went to Georgia in 1996 and settled in the town of Signaghi, in the centre of the country's wine region. He lives there with his wife Ketevan and their two children and now runs a winery, Pheasant's Tears, dedicated to preserving Georgian wine culture.

He tells the BBC about his passion for art and wine and why Georgians are more prepared to express emotions to strangers.

Produced for the BBC by Ilya Shnitser.

  • 09 Jul 2012
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