Artist’s Statement

Biography | Selected Press

My artistic practice is based on investigation and exploration of public and private spaces, on their dependence on each other and their influence on contemporary society. We all are facing the fact, that today the notions of “public” and “private” are intertwined with each other and the borders are blurred between communal and personal spaces. For me it is extremely important to observe this process and to react to the changes it triggers in our consciousness.Since 2010, I am developing a body of work exploring urban landscapes that inform our sense of identity and the intimate connections we make with the spaces we inhabit. My works can be grouped in two main series developed in parallel to each other: architectural landscapes (“Urban Intimacies”) and unmade beds exploring private spaces in “Studies for Shared Intimacies.” Architectural series started with the observations of exposed side facades of Buenos Aires (Argentina) while I lived there, and after my move to New York this topic became more intertwined with my personal story and the urge to define and find the ‘place’. I became more focused on the idea of ‘home,’ and the issues related with gentrification and displacement; as for many of us today a sense of place is more accurately identified as a sense of displacement — triggered whether by the economics, gentrification, politics or war. While in “Studies for Shared Intimacies,” by depicting my own unmade beds, I’m asking myself whether this is sincerity, or merely a self-indulgent narcissism, an overwhelming flow of one’s privacy that almost violently transforms us into voyeurs?

 

Since early 2015 the works I develop are grouped under the title “Unintended Archeology of (un)Place” and contains paintings, sculptures and mixed media sculptural drawings. For this project I am particularly driven by the changes in my native town Tbilisi (Republic of Georgia) and by general approaches of the locals towards history, past and cultural heritage. Main source for these works are photographs made during my trips to Tbilisi during 2012 – 2015, and in rare occasions – archival materials from Historical Library. Paintings in these series – depicting pixelated snapshots of random places and rendered through “vintage filters” – are paired with an almost abstract, ‘black” (various hues of blacks and silver) canvases, containing either the name of the digital file used for the painting (_IMG_5444.JPG) and/or a title of the piece (PAST is Just a Story We Tell Ourselves). Through this self-irony I am commenting on a romanticized, almost mythological take on the past of the locals and want to trigger a critical approach. While paintings keep ‘loyalty’ to the physical appearance of the place, the sculptures on the other hand are a summarized image of experiences and memories from all the places I have lived. Just some details might allude to a particular house in Bushwick (Brooklyn) or Tbilisi, they are merely hermetic remnants of what once might have been a house. Rendered in pigmented plaster, they only visually and superficially mimic a steady, permanent concrete. Fragility of the material I use, outlines temporal and ephemeral nature of the notions of ‘place’ and ‘home’ in today’s society.


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