Art Palace of Georgia presents the creativity of outstanding Georgian architect, sculptor and painter

TAMARA KVESITADZE
At the age of five she already loved Vermeer and Giacometti, at the age of eight she painted watercolours like an old master, later she created set designs, costumes, dolls and kinetic sculptures...
FROM ANCIENT CULTURE AND MYTHOLOGY TO SURREALISM
Movement is an important feature in her creativity. She creates works that successfully combine art and construction. Yet her primary concern was not the representation of movement using the resources of contemporary sculpture; her interest in movement is far more comprehensive. She was always interested in Greek philosophy and especially the aphorisms of Heraclitus. “According to him, everything is in flux and one can never enter the same river twice, as it is in constant motion. Given that sculpture is not typically linked to movement, I became more and more interested in experimenting with this idea in my practice.”- she says. 

Her ambivalence stems from a sensuality always close to tragedy, from a tension between interior commotion and lusty hedonism.

This story shows a strong affirmation of her complex identity, of the new strength that she now gains from painting, and of the eternal force of her sculptures...

... her art revolves around the contrast between the organic and the mechanic, the warmth of flesh and coolness of metal, and the cycle of rebirth...

Shock and beauty, fascination and disturbance are true emblems of her creativity.

SHE IS ...
A sculptor in the best modern meaning of the word she is an independent Georgian artist who is creating her own outstanding world. The secret of her success lies in her uncompromised creativity and strong judgment. An architect by education, she started to make dolls in Tbilisi to make a living in the turbulent 1990s. She then left for the United States, where her work attracted the interest of art dealers and galleries. She clearly grasped the business of making unique dolls for collections and challenged elaborate Western technologies with individual methods of high artistic creativity. 
STAGE FOR DOLLS
In childhood she had discovered an old French doll in a drawer of her grandma and many years later the recollections of her childhood were reflected in the stylized, porcelain baby faces of her own dolls. Practical considerations prompted her at that time to create miniature features – it was much easier to remove a tiny head from the cast.

Each Tamar Kvesitadze's doll was a microcosm of a whole world of childhood reminiscences. For six years, she created, exhibited and sold her dolls. Then she bid farewell to this sentimental genre.

TAMARASTUDIO

Years passed and she began mulling over deeper modern sculptural shapes and their dynamics, plasticity. At that very time she met Paata Sanaia - soon to become her artistic partner and now responsible for creating the complex mechanisms for her kinetic sculptures.

In 2000, together with Paata Sanaia, she founded TamaraStudio, a workshop in which she creates her art and which cooperates with various exhibition halls and large companies that produce limited series of her artistic works.

ARTIST - THINKER
Never repeating herself Tamara gives endless imaginative opportunities to all viewers. Constantly expanding and ascending her artistic vision Tamara’s creations have considerable depth and uniqueness. As a strong-willed protagonist she stepped  up to deliver her message to the world and she will not, cannot stop until she brings her message to its intended audience. She is a born artist-thinker, and cannot be otherwise. Her credentials as an artist of note were assured through her participation in the VENICE BIENNALE, both in 2007 and in 2011.
VENICE BIENNALE
Tamara  has had the honour of representing her country at the 2011 54th Venice Biennale, where her kinetic sculptures instantly heralded her as an artist of high note by critics and the public alike. By telling a story of changing identity and permanent community - one of a continuous and desperate fight against uniformity - kinetic sculpture "Sphere" - was much celebrated then and afterwords.“The dynamic reality of processes of mutation and transformation, of human beings as the ‘builders of spheres"- wrote then Henk Slager.

What Tamara wants to say artistically, she usually says with the human form. Sculpture "MAN and WOMAN" is an interpenetration of two bodies, masculine and feminine. It is a never-ending story of love and separation, of joy and of sadness, of pleasure and suffering. One must go back to the Bible (“and they become one flesh”). One must go back to one’s birth, to one’s first love and one’s first separation.
Today, the exact copy of the sculpture is preserved in the Art Palace of Georgia.

The most famous piece ‘Man and Woman’ is now standing nine meters tall against the sky over the Black Sea.

The figure of "Atlas", firmly seated on the ground looks up towards the sky, and as slowly and calmly as breath begins to move. Bands circling his body separate as he stretches up into the air, as if to reach for eternal enlightenment.

As "Atlas" quietly and endlessly moves up to the sky and down again to the Earth, a mingling of the forces of good and evil remains in perpetual balance, because within one must always reside the other, only then are we whole.

Female body has always been very present in Tamara's work, but it has rarely been a peaceful representation of quiet women; below the surface there is almost always a form of ambivalence, nonconformism...

like here, in "1/8 of a Woman"

GALERIE KORNFELD
From 2013 Tamara started to collaborate with Galerie Kornfeld, which by representing a combination of emerging and established artists is committed to contributing to a contemporary discourse.  Gallery’s space is dedicated to a diverse curatorial exhibition programs and offers residencies for international artists throughout the year. Within the collaboration Tamara exhibited kinetic sculptures, sculptures, paintings and watercolors.  On the occasion of the first solo show by Tamara Kvesitadze in Germany, Galerie Kornfeld published a catalogue with texts by Susanne Altmann, specialist for Eastern European art and writer for the German magazine ART, and French scholar, critic and writer Marc Lenot. Evaluations of these authors for Tamara's works are being used in this exhibit.

"Reptilia" was first shown at Gallerie Kornfeld.
A sculpture made of fragments, spine on which rotate twenty-five metal skeletons, twenty-five classic and blank faces. This is a sculpture of fragments, pieces combined to form a whole, a monument of unity and of diversity, of permanent metamorphosis and of constant struggle against standardization.

The wall entitled "Any Direction" creates cinematic movement in an extremely simple fashion: against the backdrop of figurative watercolors, showing a wide spectrum of human gestures, actions and fantastical creatures, a wall of plywood is placed in close proximity, with holes that follow the outlines of the painted figures...

... walking along the wall, the creatures behind it change with each new perspective and each change of light and thus seem animated. Kvesitadze thereby creates a film, a miniature world theater, which at the same time is an ironic commentary on human comedy and tragedy, staged by the exhibition as a whole.

Combining surprise and discovery, all her sculptures, kinetic or static, follow a clear path which the artist may not have thought of during the process of creation, but which naturally feeds her plastic vocabulary...

... like in this work, entitled "Ne Me Quitte Pas".

"ME and YOU"


The work celebrates the return of Tamara Kvesitadze to painting (2013), not that she had stopped using the brush, but she had not shown any painting for a long time, concentrating on her elaborate sculptures during these last years.

LIAISON OF BEAUTY AND SHOCK
Tamara’s figures show broken, skewed, amputated, fragmented bodies and thus present a paradoxical liaison of beauty and shock. In contrast to the torsos of antiquity, which always convey a notion of wholeness, the beauty of these sculptures is born from the force that resides in their infirmity- it seems that what once was trauma in the figures’ embrace, in their struggles, their suffering and their emotional imbroglios, is here reconfigured as a new dance. Despite all the ruptures and cracks, movement is still the key element of Kvesitadze’s art, comprising a variety of artistic media, from kinetic sculptures to watercolours...
Georgian State Museum of Theatre, Music, Film and Choreography
Credits: Story

Georgian State Museum of Theatre, Music, Cinema and Choreography - Art Palace
George Kalandia
Mary Kharaishvili
Irakli Zambakhidze

Special thanks to Tamara Kvesitadze, Paata Sanaia, TAMARASTUDIO and GALLERIEKORNFELD

2018

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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