Across the Caucasus

Date: 25 Nov. 2016 – 12 Dec. 2016

Museum: Tbilisi History Museum

Georgian National Museum Ioseb Grishashvili Tbilisi History Museum in the framework of the project "Contemporary Art Gallery" invites you to the exhibition "Across the Caucasus". The opening event will take place on November 25, 2016 at 6:30 pm.     

The Contemporary Art Gallery aims to support and promote contemporary art in Georgia and fosters opportunities for Georgian contemporary art to be shown locally, regionally and internationally.

This time, Tbilisi History Museum will host the fourth exhibition of the project. The exhibition brings together five artists from 5 countries of the Caucasus: Dagestan - Taus Makhacheva, Chechnya - Aslan Gaisumov, Armenia - Vahram Aghasyan, Azerbaijan - Ali Hasanov and Georgia - Vajiko Chachkhiani. Artists already distinguished themselves internationally, but still, they are not well-known in their own countries.

The exhibition showcases Objects and video installations characterized by ironic relations, where one can feel the traces of old era. The inheritance of all five artists is somehow determined by Soviet era, but over the time, Caucasian artists express current condition with some kind of irony, as if it's unknown future life, coming out from darkness.

"The Contemporary Art Gallery" project is implementing within the frame of Georgian National Museum with a support and supervision of Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia.

The exhibition "Across the Caucasus" will last until December 12, 2016.

Address: Ioseb Grishashvili Tbilisi History Museum (Karvasla), Sioni str. 8


Vajiko Chachkhiani


Chachkhiani’s work operates between the outside world and the human psyche, bringing the shadowy aspects of our human condition into awareness. Frequently based on performances or transformative actions, many of his sculptures have an affinity to minimalism but, at the same time, are charged with narrative meaning. Through the sculptures and installations, Chachkhiani seeks to address psychological conditions such as loneliness, violence and angst, interweaving them with topics from religion, politics, literature and poetry. Reoccurring themes in his work are conflict, the culture/nature distinction and the oscillation between the outer reality and the inner life of the individual being.


Vajiko Chachkhiani was born 1985 in Tbilisi, Georgia and lives and works in Berlin. He studied Mathematics and Informatics at the Technical University, Tbilisi, Georgia before turningto Fine Art, which he studied at Universität der Künste (UdK), (Berlin, Germany), and Gerrit Rietveld Academie, (Amsterdam, The Netherlands). He has participated in many group exhibitions and his recent solo exhibitions include GalleryGala, Tbilisi (2011), BINZ39, Zurich (2012), The State Museum of Literature, Tbilisi (2013) and Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Siegen, Germany (2014). Chachkhiani held a DAAD scholarship (2013), was awarded the prestigious the 7th RubensPromotional Award of the Contemporary Art Museum Siegen (2014), and was acceptedfor the ISCP Residency Program, New York (2016).


Aslan Gaisumov


Gaisumov has developed an oeuvre that feeds on but, also transforms and transcends personal and collective memory. His works are poised between visual immediacy and social commentary, between the momentary and the monumental. They are mostly videos and installations incorporating found and purposely crafted objects but, also photographs and works on paper.


 Aslan Gaisumov was born in 1991 in Grozny, Chechnya. Gaisumov graduated from the Institute of Contemporary Art in Moscow in 2012. From 2016 he is enrolled in the Higher Institute for Fine Arts (HISK) in Ghent. His solo exhibitions include ‘People of No Consequence’ at Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, 2016;‘Untitled (War)’ at Vinzavod Centre of Contemporary Art, Moscow, in 2011, ‘Memory Belongs to the Stones’ at KROMUS + ZINK, Berlin, and ‘When You Ride in a Chechen Cart, Sing a Chechen Song’ at the Contemporary Art Centre, Grozny, in 2015. Gaisumov has also participated in numerous group exhibitions, notably the 3rd Moscow Biennale for Young Art, 5th Moscow Biennale in 2013; two collateral exhibitions for Manifesta 10 in St Petersburg, and ‘Burning News’ at Hayward Gallery, London, in 2014, as well as the 56th Venice Biennale in 2015. In 2014 he was awarded the Special Prize of the Future Generation Art Prize of the Pinchuk Art Centre in Kiev, the Ukraine, and in 2016 the Innovation Prize of the National Centre for contemporary Arts in Moscow, in the category ’New Generation’.


Taus Makhacheva


Makhacheva has a performance-based practice that questions traditional forms of history making as well as cultural and gender norms. Motivated by her Daghestani-Russian identity, her works seeks to reconcile the nostalgic with the contemporary and the local with the global. In particular, she is interested in looking at the structure of Caucasian society and the relationship between its history, the politics of collective memory and contemporary life.Taus's recent work has used food as a metaphor to articulate complex geopolitical histories, for instance some doctored archive film footage of Hitler slicing a cake in the shape of the Caspian Sea became the basis for a performance in which the cake was remade and offered to the audience. During her time at Delfina, Makhacheva worked on a book dedicated to the current Daghestani fashion for cakes depicting luxury items, alongside further research into the history of edible representations of countries in relationship to conquest.


TAUS MAKHACHEVA (Dagestan) was born in 1983 in Moscow and lives and works in Makhachkala and Moscow.  She holds a BA in Fine Art from Goldsmiths College, London and an MA from the Royal College of Art, London.Selected solo exhibitions include: ‘A Walk, A Dance, A Ritual’, Museum of Contemporary Art, Leipzig, Germany (2014) and ‘Story Demands to be Continued’, Republic of Dagestan Union of Artists, Makhachkala, Russia (2013). Recent selected group exhibitions include the 55th Venice Biennale (2013); ‘Re: emerge – Towards a New Cultural Cartography’, Sharjah Biennial 11 (2013); the 7th Liverpool Biennial, (2012) and4th Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art, (2011). In 2014 Taus Makhacheva won the Future of Europe prize at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Leipzig, and in 2012 she received the Innovation Prize, the Russian state award for contemporary art in Moscow, the ‘New Generation’ category.


Vahram Aghasyan


For the artist, the modernist project in Armenia was half failed and half remained unfinished. In his video installations and digital photos Aghasyan investigates these architectural sites, and shows the social aspects of local modernity, by means of the analysis of historical, figurative and geopolitical aspects of the Soviet architecture and its representations.


Vahram Aghasyan was born in 1974 in Yerevan, Armenia, where he now lives and works.He has shown internationally in the 10th International Istanbul Biennial, the Museum Kiasma in Helsinki and the 1st Contemporary Art Biennale of Thessaloniki. He has been in many group exhibitions, including “Resistance through Art” at the Armenian Pavilion, 51st Venice Biennale in 2005.


Ali Hasanov


The very meaning of the title, “Alibi,” is not obvious. It induces reflection concerning its interpretation. One possible (but not exclusive) version includes how the means of total manipulation over the social mind (at first glance, of course, the media, but also, to some extent, the forms of art for mass consumption) stealthily shape the disregard for pain, violence, and destruction. The key psychological trigger in this construct is alibi, or the absence of evidence of perpetration, the principle of: “I was not present there.”


Born in 1976, Baku, Azerbaijan, lives and works in Baku and Moscow. A graduate of the Azim Azimzadeh State Art College (1993) and Azerbaijan State University of Culture and Art in Baku (1997), Ali received a degree in Film-making from Rustam Ibragimbekov’s Baku International Film School (2010), followed up by another degree from the Moscow School of New Cinema (2013).

Ali pioneered performance art in Azerbaijan, represented his country at the 52nd Venice Biennale (2007).He has exhibited widely in Azerbaijan and in Russia, Georgia, France, Norway, Greece and Italy.His recent solo exhibitions include Vice Versa, YAY Gallery, Baku, Azerbaijan, 2013 and Cathedral Spy, Protvor Gallery, Saint Petersburg, Russia, 2009. His recent selected Projects and Exhibitions include Videofocus, Media Arts Festival, NCCA, Moscow, Russia (2014), Marker: Caucasus and Central Asia, Azerbaijan Pavillion and Revelations, National Centre for contemporary art, Moscow, Russia (2013), Fly to Baku. Contemporary Art from Azerbaijan, Kunsthistorisches museum - Neue Burg, Vienna, Austria;