Medium: Print on fabric, embroidery
Location: Georgian Pavilion, Venice Biennale, Italy
Supported by: The Ministry of Culture of Georgia
In Humancon Undercon I portrayed the situation in Georgia, the country of my origin, where things change so rapidly that the only way for people to catch up with their changing surroundings is to quickly forget the recent past. I am concerned with our inability to perceive things in their totality – a totality that includes space and time. I believe this inability lies behind Georgia’s present condition of constant amnesia, in which we choose to overlook certain aspects of our collective past. This mindset creates a layered architecture, leaving very interesting traces of the human touch on buildings.
Humancon Undercon (decoded title: human condition under construction) consisted of a series of black and white photographs printed on fabric, embroidery, and miniature sculpted landscapes. These printed images showed fragments of architecture and human traces in an urban environment that has become thoroughly inhuman – large and rough man-made landscapes, half-destroyed or not-yet-fully-built buildings. I worked on the details of these images and hand-embroidered parts of them. I chose to embroider the details that showed the human touch within these no-man’s-land landscapes. The embroidered elements were detailed and depicted nostalgic wooden railings (used in rural houses) on the unfinished parasite loggia on top of the so-called “Khrushchev building” and a half-finished brick wall in the middle of a concrete carcass. There was also a miniature wooden coffin made from wood matching the color of the wooden railing. I chose these details in order to emphasize the imbalance or rather the hybrid situation of this reality, and to depict the character of people living there.