Karlo Kacharava Talks: keynote lecture & panel discussion

2 Sentimental Traveler Karlo Kacharava

As part of the exhibition 'Sentimental Traveller' by Karlo Kacharava, you can attend a lecture and panel discussion on Saturday 30 March.

Karlo Kacharava Talks is a public programme, unfolding in the context of Karlo Kacharava’s exhibition Sentimental Traveller at S.M.A.K. The events punctuating the programme unite various generations and diasporas of Georgian and international artists, art historians, curators, and thinkers. Unfolding primarily at S.M.A.K., and concluding in Tbilisi, Karlo Kacharava Talks adopts multifocal, multivocal, and multidisciplinary approaches with and from Kacharava’s oeuvre, entering into dialogue with his work.

Kacharava zaalzicht copyright Dirk Pauwels 22

Keynote Lecture by Sophie Keburia | 11 am

Tbilisi-based art critic, historian, and theorist Dr. Sophie Keburia will introduce and discuss research she has conducted over the years on the writings of Karlo Kacharava related to some of the themes that run throughout his work. She invites us to relate to these themes through new textual perspectives focusing specifically on the role of images, storytelling, language, and references in the work of Kacharava.

7 Georgia Karlo Kacharava

Panel Discussion “Contextualizing Karlo Kacharava Today” | 2 pm

Speakers: Dina Akhmadeeva, Anastasia Akhvlediani, Nina Kintsurashvili, and Irena Popiashvili. Moderated by Irena Popiashvili

In the context of Sentimental Traveller, Anastasia Akhvlediani and Nina Kintsurashvili, two Georgian artists from the younger generation, as well as art historians and curators Dina Akhmadeeva (Tate Modern, London) and Irina Popiashvili (Kunsthalle Tbilisi, Tbilisi) meet to discuss their respective work and practices, and their evolving roles in today’s world in dialogue with Karlo Kacharava’s work. Kacharava resonates for them as an important cultural figure, artist, poet, and art critic who allows the visual material of Georgia to be taken in legacy and re-actualized with artistic and curatorial points of view. The panel discussion will unfold with several presentations of artworks by Anastasia Akhvlediani and Nina Kintsurashvili, as well as Dina Akhmadeva’s take on the existing art scenes of the former Soviet countries, as well as Irina Popiashvili’s contribution with historical and biographical narratives surrounding the life and work of Kacharava, in light of today’s society.

Practical information
  • Saturday 30.Mar.24 at 11 am (Keynote Lecture) and 2 pm (Panel Discussion)
  • S.M.A.K. Auditorium
  • In English
  • The talks are free to attend, please reserve via reservation@smak.be


Dr. Sophie Keburia, Ph.D. (სოფიო ქებურია) is an art critic, historian and theorist. She has led courses and lectures at the Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University, as well as at various other educational institutions. She is the author of numerous academic papers and co-author of art school textbooks. Her work experience embraces a variety of research, scientific, editorial, and educational activities.

Dina Akhmadeeva is a London-based curator, art historian, and writer. At Tate Modern, she works on exhibitions, displays, and the performance programme. She is responsible for research and acquisitions into the collection with a focus on Central and Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and the Caucasus. Her most recent exhibition projects at Tate Modern are the 2023 Hyundai Commission: El Anatsui and the 2022-3 exhibition Magdalena Abakanowicz: Every Tangle of Thread and Rope.

Independently, her projects include Baltic Triennial 13 (Vilnius, Tallinn, Riga, 2018), as well as group exhibitions at FUTURA, Prague (2021) and M HKA, Antwerp (2021-22). She holds a BA and an MSt in History of Art and Visual Culture from the University of Oxford, where she was an Arts and Humanities Research Council Master’s Scholar. Her recent writings have been published by Distanz, Frans Masereel Centrum, and Cura Books.

Anastasia Akhvlediani ( b. 1996) is a Georgian artist currently based in Munich, Germany. She studied at the Free University Tbilisi Faculty of Visual Arts, Architecture, and Design (VA[A]DS) from 2014 to 2018, earning her Bachelor of Arts Degree. She taught at VA[A]DS as a drawing studio professor from 2021 to 2022.

In 2023 Anastasia Akhvlediani continued her studies at the Fine Arts Academy Munich, in the class of Professor Olaf Nicolai Sculpture and 3D Design. She participated in various group exhibitions and solo presentations, including Nevertold at Open Space, Tbilisi, Georgia, KNOW THY NEIGHBOR, OXYGEN Biennial (2020, Tbilisi, Georgia) Tbilisi Online Biennial (2020), Nariman (2019), and Obscura Workshops (2018, Tbilisi, Georgia). In the past Anastasia has explored unique spaces for showcasing her art, such as an abandoned Soviet school building in 2018 and the Parallel Vienna exhibition in 2017.

Nina Kintsurashvili (b. 1992) is based in Tbilisi. She earned her BFA in painting from Tbilisi State Academy of Arts and MFA in Intermedia & Sculpture from The University of Iowa through the Fulbright award. She is a multidisciplinary artist working in various mediums. However, she often turns to the traditional painterly surface as her basal realm of artistic contemplation. Although abstract in its representation, her research-based process allows Kintsurashvili’s paintings to reference key Georgian visual codes resurfacing in the cultural vortex and explore heritage as a political commodity, with its self-imposed or involuntary negligence. The artist carefully studies collected visual material that arrives at her uncluttered studio in a lab-like manner. These are gathered from field visits to archaeological sites and searching through pre-archived Soviet archaeological data from Russian-occupied territories. Kintsurashvili, in staging such an environment, creates an opportunity for mental contamination, just slightly so that she still stands liberated in front of the canvas, allowing the abstracted vision to surpass.

​Deconstructions, reflection, and mirroring concern Nina Kintsurashvili’s abstract paintings, where imagery of the collective subconscious and streams of auto-generated thoughts metamorphose into pneumatic forms floating in the abyss, disregarding perspective. Only the perforations in what seems like a new-age tissue expose the traces of ancient environments priorly observed by the artist. Quasi-figurative shapes are caught up in a constant stir of erasing and regeneration. Although entirely formal, this functionality has physical reference points: the vandalized, overpainted, and flaked murals in Georgian monasteries, some of which are architecturally excavated in rocks, only allowing a pierced tunnel vision. As an imperial act of Russian colonization, In 19th-century Georgia, medieval frescoes were whitewashed and painted over by contemporary Russian artists in an attempt to excavate and replace the culture or completely erase it. Since gaining independence in the 90s, efforts were put in by Georgian restorers to uncover original frescos, where Nina Kintsurashvili witnessed two images from different periods lay bare next to one another, clashing and fighting for the wall space. Poetic yet political was that memory for her, and the same could be said about her paintings.

Nina’s works have been exhibited in the Svaneti Museum of History and Ethnography (Mestia, Georgia), Gallery Artbeat (Tbilisi, Georgia), LC Queisser (Tbilisi, Georgia), E.A. Shared Space (Tbilisi, Georgia), Commune Gallery (Vienna, Austria), PS1 Iowa City (IA, US), Ortega Y Gasset (NY, US) and Ekru Projects (KC, US).

Irena Popiashvili is a curator and educator. She completed her education at Javakhishvili State University, Tbilisi; University of Lodz, Poland, University of Georgia, Athens, GA, USA and Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Since 2013 she is the dean of Visual Art, Architecture, and Design School VA[A]DS at the Free University of Tbilisi. Additionally, she is a co-founder of Kunsthalle Tbilisi. Previously she was a co-owner of Popiashvili Gvaberidze Window Project, Tbilisi, Georgia (2013-2017), Newman Popiashvili Gallery, New York, USA (2005-2012), and the rector of the Tbilisi State Academy of Arts (2012).

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