This summer, the Kunsthalle Zürich will present the biggest solo exhibition of Georgian-born artist Andro Wekua to date. You can see older and barely known, but also the latest sculptures, a selection of current pictures, collages and, as a world premiere, his latest film. Wekua's art does not leave anyone cold, whether they like it or not. She is unabashed and intense, brilliant with knowledge of material, form, image power and staging and has a strong sense of seduction and rejection. The result is evocative and sometimes uncanny spaces. These are places between before and after, evoking a present where time seems to be waiting.
Taking a step backwards, the view opens up to motifs that the artist has positioned like a set of chess pieces for almost twenty years: the house, the landscape, the interior, the animal, the figure, the face, the machine. We know this variation, formulating and reconnecting motifs from music, literature and film. In art, this approach is somewhat forgotten or is wrongly equated with repetition. However, Wekua's work shows how important motifs are, how they circle and capture impressions, memories and the unspeakable. The result is soul landscapes whose depths one likes to escape and whether it is by leaving the exhibition.
These are by no means only seemingly time-distant interior worlds. History plays an important role here - or rather a different experience of history. Wekua's art has been committed to his interests and his life in the West since 1995, but also before his time in Sochumi, Tbilisi and in civil war-marked Georgia. In this work, West meets East, or East to West, but not as opposites, as many would like to see, but as a complex and contradictory entanglement: "It is directed against everything that belongs to the system of art." (Wekua) Here color is central, but also - and a bit surprising - the seam: it is a scar and a punctuation mark of this art, nothing and yet everything, because the seam is completely dependent on the parts that bind it, but which would be lost without it. No seam no film (the cut is the seam), no collage (joining by cutting), but also no sculptures and none of his latest pictures, many of which can be seen for the first time in Zurich. In its arbitrariness, the seam reminds us that art is always composition, that it is artificial and that, like a text, a film or a stage, reality condenses. We are exposed to this double experience in the Kunsthalle: All is Fair in Dreams and War. the reality condenses. We are exposed to this double experience in the Kunsthalle: All is Fair in Dreams and War. the reality condenses. We are exposed to this double experience in the Kunsthalle: All is Fair in Dreams and War.
(Photo: Courtesy of Kunsthalle Zurich)