contemporary art

Andro Wekua/ Andro Wekua

Georgia 1977

Installation, Sculpture, Video Art, Collage, Drawing

Andro Wekua
Andro Wekua
Male
Georgia
1977

Andro Wekua is a Georgian artist now based in Zurich and Berlin, whose repertoire is abundant in variety – he makes films, creates clay figures with wondrously glazed surfaces, produces collages that combine photography, drawing and painting and he paints on canvas in a style that manifests both mannerism and virtuosity, piecing together fragmented fictions pictorially representing no-where worlds of mystery and intrigue.

Wekua was born in 1977 in Sukhumi, Georgia, where he witnessed an ethnic conflict in Abkhazia. His father, the Georgian political activist, was killed by the Abkhaz nationalists during the 1989 Sukhumi riots. He studied at the National Art School in Sukhumi, followed by the Visual Art School in Basel.

In his creations, Andro Wekua draws on his own biography as a resource, weaving it into fiction. Wekua’s oeuvre and ephemeral miscellanea bring together diverse topographic and geographic entities, histories, and characters, each woven into a net. These images are taken from the artist’s personal albums or found as postcards, books and in television. At one level, sprinkled references to the artist’s past evince a complex, personal symbolism rooted in Wekua’s childhood in Soviet Georgia. Yet Wekua’s sources remain for the most part obscure, and his method of layering paint and blurring filmic images is equally obfuscating, suggesting that his charged iconography may function to evoke less a specific past than the commonality of all private, imagined lives. His collaged images give cinematic flair, providing potential cast, setting, and narrative for viewers’ interpretation, subtly entwining their personal references with his own. Shaped into myth and saga, his story serves as an exhaustless reservoir of new ideas, mainly referring to childhood – boys and girls incorporate this flashback appropriately as symbols of the beginning of every life story and the openness with which it unfolds.

Wekua’s multi-part installations featuring cast mannequins, abstract sculptures, figurative painting, drawing, collage and film dispersed throughout carefully conceived environments are overwhelming in both scope and psychological content. The uneasy co-existence of openness, on the one hand, and withholding, on the other, runs throughout the artist’s work, nowhere more dramatically than in his signature cast-wax mannequins. As in all Wekua’s installations, the contrast between the mannequins’ postures and their presentation is discomfiting. Formally and psychologically reserved, the figures are nonetheless theatrically presented, less discrete entities than variations on one another. His traditional working method – he casts live models in wax – renders his personages both strangely lifelike and spookily artificial.

The artist’s work has been exhibited in numerous venues around Europe and the United States. Andro Wekua separates his time and creates in Zurich, Switzerland, and Berlin, Germany.

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumGroup/Solo
2014Some Pheasants in SingularitySprüth Magers, LondonSolo
2014Pink Wave HunterBenaki Museum, AthensSolo
2014InsidePalais de Tokyo, ParisGroup
2014Memory PalaceContemporary Art Center, Cincinnati, OhioGroup
2014The Human Factor: Uses of the Figure in Contemporary SculptureHayward Gallery, LondonGroup
2014High Performance: The Julia Stoschek Collection at the ZKMZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, GermanyGroup
2013OrganicCentre d’Art Contemporain Genève, SwitzerlandGroup
2013RepertoryPalazzo Cavour, Turino, ItalyGroup
2012Dreaming DreamingGladstone Gallery, New YorkSolo
2012Alone TogetherRubell Family Collection, Contemporary Arts Foundation, MiamiGroup
2012A Disagreeable ObjectSculpture Center, New YorkGroup
2012La La La Human Steps: A Selection from the Collection of Museum Boijmans van BeuningenIstanbul Museum of Modern Art, Istanbul Group
2012Prima MateriaGladstone Gallery, BrusselsGroup
2012Cross-Time StoriesMiriam and Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University, New YorkGroup
2012Contemporary Painting, 1960 to the Present: Selections from the SFMOMA CollectionSan Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San FranciscoGroup
2011Never Sleep With a Strawberry In Your MouthKunsthalle Wien, ViennaSolo
2011Pink Wave HunterKunsthalle Fridericianum, Kassel, GermanySolo
2011A Neon ShadowCastello di Rivoli, Torino, Italy Solo
2011Gesamtkunstwerk New Art From GermanySaatchi Gallery LondonGroup
2011Number Five: Cities of Gold and MirrorsJulia Stoschek Collection, Düsseldorf, GermanyGroup
2011Preis der Nationalgalerie Für Junge KunstHamburger Bahnhof, Berlin, GermanyGroup
2011Junge KunstKunsthaus Zurich, Zurich, SwitzerlandGroup
2011OstalgiaNew Museum, New YorkGroup
2011Happy Holiday DrawingsAlex Zachary Gallery, New YorkGroup
2011ILLUMInationsVenice Biennale, Venice, Italy Group
2011Un Espressione GeograficaFondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Torino, Italy Group
2011A New Sensualism in Contemporary SculptureGL Strand, Copenhagen, DenmarkGroup
2010Gott ist tot aber das Mädchen nichtSchinkel Pavillon, Berlin Solo
2010Books, Editions, and the LikeSwiss Institute, New YorkSolo
20101995Gladstone Gallery, BrusselsSolo
2010Die Nase des MichelangeloGalerie Peter Kilchmann, Zurich, SwitzerlandGroup
201010,000 Lives8th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, South Korea Group
2010Rethinking LocationSpruth Magers, BerlinGroup
2010Get Behind Me Satan and PushPeres Projects, Berlin Group
2010Swiss Drawings 1990-2010Musée Rath, Geneva, SwitzerlandGroup
2010Swiss Drawings 1990-2010Aargauer Kunsthaus, Aarau, SwitzerlandGroup
2010Skin Fruit: Selections from the Dakis Joannou CollectionNew Museum, New YorkGroup
2010Abstract ResistanceWalker Art Center, MinneapolisGroup
2010Contemplating the VoidSolomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New YorkGroup
2010032 Workshop Report #1Baibakov Art Projects, Moscow Group
2010Ordinary MadnessCarnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PennsylvaniaGroup
2009Workshop ReportWiels, BrusselsSolo
200928. AugustGalerie Peter Kilchmann, Zürich, SwitzerlandSolo
2009Workshop ReportMuseion, Bolzano, ItalySolo
2009Word WrapsAbout Change Collection, BerlinGroup
2009Bad HabitsAlbright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York Group
2009Le Sang du PoèteEstuaire Nantes, Saint-Nazaire, France Group
2009A GUEST + A HOST = A GHOSTDeste Foundation, AthensGroup
2009Modern ModernChelsea Art Museum, New YorkGroup
2009Shifting Identities - (Swiss) Art NowContemporary Art Centre, Vilnius, LithuaniaGroup
2009Altes EuropaSchickeria, BerlinGroup
2009Born in GeorgiaCobra Museum, AmsterdamGroup
2009EndsGeorge Kargl, Kerstin Engholm, Schleifmühlegasse, ViennaGroup
2008My Bike and Your SwampCamden Art Center, LondonSolo
2008My Bike and Your SwampDe Hallen, Haarlem, Netherlands Solo
2008Sunset - I love the HorizonLe Magasin Centre National d’Art Contemporain de Grenoble, Grenoble, FranceSolo
2008Blue MirrorGladstone Gallery, New YorkSolo
2008Line is a lonely HunterNew Jerseyy, Basel, Switzerland Group
2008ExpenditureBusan Biennale, Busan, South Korea Group
2008Now: Selections from the Ovitz Family CollectionArizona State University Art Museum, Tempe, ArizonaGroup
2008Shifting IdentitiesKunsthaus Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland Group
2008Past-Forward176 Zabludowicz Collection, LondonGroup
2008Life on Mars: 55th Carnegie InternationaleCarnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PennsylvaniaGroup
2008SgozzataPeres Projects, Berlin Group
2008Paintings: 1936 – 2008The Approach, LondonGroup
2007The Hydra WorkshopsHydra Workshop, Hydra, GreeceSolo
2007InterludeGalerie Peter Kilchmann, Zürich, SwitzerlandSolo
2007Wait to WaitMuseum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam, The NetherlandsSolo
2007Everyday is SaturdayTbilisi Center for Contemporary Art, Tbilisi Group
2007Video LoungeKunsthaus Zürich, Zurich, SwitzerlandGroup
2007Unholy TruthsFrank Cohen Collection, Initial Access, Wolverhampton, United Kingdom Group
2007Works in CeramicGladstone Gallery, New YorkGroup
2007Fractured Figure: Works from the Dakis Joannou CollectionDeste Foundation, AthensGroup
2007UlakanakulotG. Space with Museion, Bolzano, ItalyGroup
2007Absent Without LeaveVictoria Miro Gallery, LondonGroup
2007Like color in picturesAspen Art Museum, Aspen, ColoradoGroup
2006Andro Wekua – I’m sorry if I’m not very funny tonightKunstmuseum Winterthur, Winterthur, SwitzerlandSolo
2006Without MirrorGladstone Gallery, New YorkSolo
2006Artists for Tichy – Tichy for ArtistsMuseum Moderner Kunst Wörlen Passau, Passau, Germany,Group
2006Peinture Aller - RetourCentre Culturel Suisse, Paris Group
2006Tbilisi 3: Let’s stay alive till MondayChildrens National Gallery, TbilisiGroup
2006Acquisitions récentesCentre Georges Pompidou, ParisGroup
2006Printemps de SeptembreContemporary Art Festival, Toulouse, FranceGroup
2006Pose & SculptureCasey Kaplan Gallery, New YorkGroup
2006The Kate ShowFoam Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam, Amsterdam Group
2006Collectors 1Collezione La Gaia, Busca, ItalyGroup
2006Infinite PaintingVilla Manin Centre for Contemporary Art, Passariano, ItalyGroup
2006Of Mice and Men4th Berlin Biennale, BerlinGroup
2006Painting ArchitectureLe Plateau, Frac Ile-de-France, Paris Group
2006Painting ArchitectureCamden Arts Center, LondonGroup
2006Neuerwerbsausstellung der Grafischen SammlungKunsthaus Zürich, Zürich, SwitzerlandGroup
2005Andro WekuaThe Rubell Family Collection, MiamiSolo
2005Insert: Andro WekuaBonner Kunstverein, Bonn, Germany Solo
2005Andro WekuaGalerie Peter Kilchmann, Zurich, SwitzerlandSolo
2005That would have been wonderfulNeue Kunst Halle St. Gallen, St. Gallen, SwitzerlandSolo
2005Andro WekuaPalais für aktuelle Kunst, Kunstverein Glückstadt, Glückstadt, GermanySolo
2005Concrete CastleConfort Moderne, Poitiers, FranceGroup
2005Unter 30Centre PasquArt, Biel, SwitzerlandGroup
2005Swiss Art Awards 2005Bundesamt für Kultur, Messe Basel, Basel, SwitzerlandGroup
2005Expanded PaintingPrague Biennale 2, Karlin Hall, Prague Group
2005ID Troubles – US VisitNURTUREart, New YorkGroup
2005Come Back - Le RetourCentre Rhenan d’Art Contemporain Alsace, Altkirch, France Group
2005Lovely MemoriesPlattform, Berlin, GermanyGroup
2004Group ShowGalerie Yvon Lambert, ParisGroup
2004Tuesday is goneKarvasla, TbilisiGroup
2004Emotion EinsFrankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt, Germany Group
2004Emotion EinsUrsula Blickle Stiftung, Kraichtal, Germany Group
2004ID TroublesHalle für Kunst, Lüneburg, GermanyGroup
2004Strategies of DesireKunsthaus Baselland, Muttenz, SwitzerlandGroup
2004Dessins et des autres – Part IIGalerie Catherine Bastide, Brussels Group
2004Shake – ID TroublesHalle für Kunst, Lüneburg, Germany Group
2004Black10 rue de Turenne, Paris Group
2004Fürchte DichHelmhaus Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland Group
2004The Human Face is an Empty Force, a Field of DeathAnnet Gelink Gallery, AmsterdamGroup
2004Dessins et des AutresGalerie Anne de Villepoix, ParisGroup
2004Stiftung BINZ 39Zurich, SwitzerlandGroup
2004PunktleuchtenHotel 3 Könige, BaselGroup
2003Go to Church Mam, Go to ChurchGalerie Peter Kilchmann, Zürich, SwitzerlandSolo
2003Andro WekuaPiano Noble, Geneva, SwitzerlandSolo
2003Which Side Are You On?Kunstraum Walcheturm, Zurich, Switzerland Group
2003Coup de coeur - A sentimental choiceCentre Rhenan d’Art Contemporain Alsace, Altkirch, France Group
2003It’s in our handsMigros Museum, Zurich, Switzerland Group
2003Swiss Art Award 2003Basel, SwitzerlandGroup
2003Diarios Urbanos - Joven arte suizoAlcalá, MadridGroup
2003Durchzug - DraftKunsthalle Zürich, Zurich, SwitzerlandGroup
2002Persönliche Pläne, Die Zeichnung vom Lebensplan bis zum WeltentwurfKunsthalle Basel, Basel, SwitzerlandGroup
2002Heirat im WestenKunsthalle St. Gallen, SwitzerlandGroup
2001Wald und ExplosionenHelmhaus Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland Group
2001Und – oder – aberStiftung Binz 39, Zurich, SwitzerlandGroup
2000Jungs und MädchenWarteck, Basel, Switzerland Group