Idem et Idem

I was born in 1991 during a transformative period in Georgian history, as the Soviet Union was collapsing and independence was being re-established. At the age of 12, I witnessed the 2003 Rose Revolution in Tbilisi with my mother, an event that deeply influenced my worldview and shaped my understanding of the relationship between individual freedom and collective desire. 

I am deeply drawn to the concept of the the monomyth, “Journey of the Hero,” which I explore in my art as a personal embodiment of this archetypal role; My painting series “Idem et Idem” (Same and the Same) is a prime example of this exploration.

The series delves into the persistent human complexities that have spanned from ancient forced migrations to the contemporary refugee crisis. Drawing on my childhood memories of a critical moment in Georgian history, my approach is uniquely personal and provides a poignant lens through which to view these themes.

Amid the clamour of New York, where the ruthless wolves of Wall Street roamed the towering skyscrapers of commerce, I sought refuge in the hallowed halls of Carnegie Hall. There, I was transported by the performance of Steve Reich’s minimalist opus for six pianos. Music has always been my muse, and as I listened, I was struck by the visual forms that danced in my mind’s eye. The rhythmic pulsations of Reich’s composition appeared to me as black, chaotic spots and white silhouettes, reminiscent of the delicate art of Japanese ink drawing on rice paper. At first, the figures resembled penguins, wandering the frozen wastelands. Yet, as the music swelled, they transformed into a host of women marching in unison – a representation of the Idem et Idem (The Same and the Same, 2015).

As a child, I was in attendance at the Easter liturgy and was struck by the long lines of pilgrims who had gathered in the courtyards of the cathedral. My first experience of a funeral procession was for a classmate, where mothers dressed in black, heads bowed, carried the shrouded deceased to a meticulously dug grave. At the tender age of twelve, I witnessed my first revolution on the central avenue of the capital, where I observed public speeches being given to masses of people, with rows of heads that formed a horizon line. Throughout my life, I have seen society shaped by ideology, the collective unconscious, and herd instinct, whether at protest rallies, in temples, in night clubs, or at stadiums…

I am interested in separating the individual from the group dynamic.