Artisterium exhibition to mark 12th edition with new mission, bring artists to Kutaisi

‘Untitled’, a 2019 work by artists Niko Tsetskhladze and Galaktion Kintsurashvili. Image: Artisterium., 04 Jun 2019 - 18:17, Tbilisi,Georgia

Organisers of the Artisterium Tbilisi International Contemporary Art Exhibition will seek to use their platform for a “new mission” by bringing artists and shows to locations outside the capital of Tbilisi, while also celebrating an anniversary of Georgian modernist David Kakabadze.


With the 12th edition of the annual display and forum, under the Artisterium on the Road format, local and visiting creatives will travel to Kutaisi, a regional capital of the Imereti province in Georgia’s west.


There, in the Kutaisi Fine Art Gallery named after the avant-garde painter, researcher and inventor, group exhibitions and artist talks will herald a new focus for the event.


Organisers will seek to “decentralise” artistic events — usually grouped around the hub of Tbilisi — by bringing their participants and displays to the province where Kakabadze was born 130 years ago.



A still from ‘Promise of Work’, a 2018 video by artist Ali Bramwell. Photo: Don Hunter.


Kutaisi is the first city of the Artisterium’s new mission. The city boasts a rich modernist tradition of its own and played a key role in the development of contemporary Georgian culture” — Artisterium organisers


The exhibition will open next Tuesday with a group show at the gallery venue, with 20 Georgian and foreign creatives bringing their work to the 8, Rustaveli Street location.


At the same spot, a St. Petersburg-based collective is set to present their United Futuristic Platform, while another display will focus around the contemporary Georgian video art and its figures, recently the subject of a display at Atelier Frankfurt in Germany.


On subsequent days of the programme, the Gallery will host public talks on subjects from ties between culture and nature in contemporary poetry, to post-urbanism viewed as the concept of the future.


A full day of walks will bring participants of Artisterium to some of the wide range of notable sites centred around Kutaisi, including abandoned mines, craft workshops and the Gelati Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


Another location in the city, the Vladimir Mayakovsky House Museum, will be the destination for an evening of poetry, before the 2019 exhibition and forum returns to Tbilisi for the concluding date.


On the final day, the Tbilisi History Museum, also known as Karvasla, will present visual documentation of Kutaisi displays and activities.


Organised by the Artisterium Association, the annual exhibition has been held since 2008 at local galleries, museum venues and other locations. The name of the exhibition is a nod to an avant-garde club in the early 20th century Tbilisi on a backdrop of an emergence of modernist artistic tendencies in the city.


The full programme of the 12th Artisterium edition can be accessed here.