Tag Archives: contemporary Georgian Art

An interview with Gio Sumbadze about a Group Exhibition of Georgian Artists, Beyond Credit in New York

The new gallery space for Art in General was opened with Beyond Credit, a group exhibition of Georgian artists in Brooklyn, NY, February 2, 2016. The exhibition, curated by Wato Tsereteli, features the works of five Georgian artists: Thea Gvetadze, Mamuka Japharidze, Nika Machaidze, Nino Sekhniashvili and Gio Sumbadze.

This very interesting Georgian exhibition, hosting a large number of visitors, will run till April, 2016. We are pleased that Project ArtBeat is among the supporters of the exhibition.

Project ArtBeat’s Mariam talked to our artist and the participant of the exhibition Gio Sumbadze about Beyond Credit.


Mariam Loria- Whose idea was it to make exhibition at Art in General? How did you come together?

Gio Sumbadze– Curators of the Art in General, Kirsten Chappa and Anne Barlow, visited me last year and we had a talk regarding this topic. Afterwards, they had business meeting with Wato in CCA (Center of Contemporary Art in Tbilisi). The first cooperation with Art in General was Chubika’s exhibition in 2015. Then our group exhibition Beyond Credit was organized. The works by Thea Gvetadze, Mamuka Japharidze, Nika Machaidze, Nino Sekhniashvili and me are curated by Wato Tsereteli. Art in General’s new space was opened with this exhibition.

M. L. – What do you think about the exhibition? What are the outcomes?

G. S. – The context of the exhibition is very rectified. All the artworks are in dialogue with each other. Also, it was very significant in terms of the dialogue between the US and Georgia. The exhibition was well-organized by both sides and being part of it was really important for me. Generally it seems to be a substantial organization. I want to thank Project ArtBeat for supporting me. I think it is very good for Project ArtBeat to be affiliated with Art in General.


M. L. – Tell me about your artworks presented at Beyond Credit.

G. S. – I made the work Connecting Skies specially for this space. I am interested in ecology and the issues connected with the nature. Accordingly, I observe the current processes in Georgia and United States. Since, I had an opportunity I reflected this theme in my work. I am interested in atmospheric physics and the level of environmental pollution/cleanliness, also in the pollution index in different areas. The US has one of the best results in environmental protection. Therefore, I don’t mind presenting our clouds there, because I know that American people care about environment and try not to pollute it. The US was interesting in this regard.

On the other hand, the dialogue with the artistic group and curator of the exhibition was important for me. It was my first exhibition with Thea Gvetadze and I am proud of it. I had an experience of working with other artists before and it was interesting to work with them again.

M. L. – Did you bring new ideas and materials from New York?

G. S. – Yes, of course! It would be thoughtless to travel so far in vain. I think the materials and shots I brought from New York will transform into works. However, at this stage, I don’t know where and how I will exhibit them.

Mariam Loria

March, 2016

Project ArtBeat at START Art Fair in London

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The second edition of START Art Fair was held at Saatchi Gallery 10-13 September, 2015. Project ArtBeat has been presented from Tbilisi at START this year.

Project ArtBeat presented artworks by Tato Akhalkatsishvili, Maka Batiashvili, Irakli Bugiani and Sopho Chkhikvadze at art fair. They attracted rather big attention of society and press.

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Exposition Fragmented united the artworks under the theme: what constitutes the memory in fragments and how the fragments compose an alternative memory of the possible. Born in Georgia, the artists underwent the turbulent times of the post-Soviet condition.  The works they create are based upon different life experiences.

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I talked with Salome Vakhania about START Art Fair:

Mariam Loria – What distinguishes START Art Fair from others?

Salome Vakhania – The main purpose is to encourage young galleries and artists to emerge in the international contemporary art space. There are very close and friendly relationships between the founders and exhibitors of START. It facilitates cooperation. Working with them is real pleasure and it turns into collaboration.

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M.L. – Why is it important for Georgian Gallery to participate in START, London?

S.V. START Art Fair is held at Saatchi Gallery, one of the most important galleries in London. The gallery hosts thousands of visitors every day. Being presented in this exhibition space is a very important step in the carrier of Georgian artists. Project ArtBeat team are very happy that we became a part of this significant moment. Project ArtBeat team made friends with the founders of START David & Serenella Ciclitira and director of the fair Niru Ratnam. They are the supporters of our gallery. We really appreciate their sincere attention and advice.

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M.L. – Did your participation at the fair have any resonance from the press? Was any article about Project ArtBeat and your artists published?

S.L. – Maka Batiashvili, Irakli Bugiani and Sopho Chkhikvadze’s works presented by Project ArtBeat at Start Art Fair had a lot of visitors and received numerous compliments and positive feedback. Besides, such resonance from press was really important. Famous art critic Louisa Buck (a member of Turner Prize jury in 2005), who reviewed START Art Fair, mentioned Project ArtBeat very positively in The Art Newspaper. In the Artnet News article with the title 10 Great Reasons to Visit London’s START Art Fair Project ArtBeat Gallery was singled out as one of the reasons. Besides such positive feedback from international media Georgian press evaluation was really pleasant.

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Mariam Loria