Andro Wekua’s hometown, Sochumi in the Republic of Georgia, used to be an idyllic holiday resort for Soviet functionaries. Today it is a zone of exclusion, empty and yet replete with memories: the house of his grandmother, the Black Sea, communist propaganda, a monumental freighter at the docks, traces of the political turmoil of the past.
Wekua uses these fragments of personal and political history to create atmospheric paintings, collages, sculptures, traces of his post-cold war search of things past. They are images from a no man’s land between East and West, past und present, nightmare and nostalgia. The artist deliberately refrains from reconstructing the past—instead he aestheticizes, transfigures and interprets it to accommodate his own taste. The consequence is an inevitable contradiction. A nostalgia varnish turns Wekua’s pictures into the remote ideal of non-accelerated society with manifest references to his own past. (Gianni Jetzer)