About

Uta Bekaia.

Uta Bekaia
was born in 1974, Tbilisi (Georgia). Currently resides and works in New York and Tbilisi.
He had studied Industrial Design at Tbilisi Mtsire Academy. He debuted as an artist at AMA (Avant-Guard Fashion Assembly) with a sculptural performance, which was shown in Moscow the same year. Since 1998 Uta Bekaia lives in New York. He had worked on numerous theatre and movie projects as a costume and set designer. Currently he creates multimedia performances and installations inhabited with wearable sculptures, exploring his historical cultural background, Genetical codes and cycles of the universe. Among his current projects should be mentioned Istanbul 14th Biennial, Kiyiv 2nd Biennal and Tbilisi City Parade “Berikaoba”.

 “My path as an artist is linked  to my personal experiences  and growth. As a child, I have lived in comfortable and secure environment of communist  idealism. As I became mature and entered  the puberty, I experienced total crash of Soviet Union, and contemplated the absurd and  instability of the system. This played crucial role in my personal and artistic growth. This was a time of realization,  that I project my inner world to outside, and if there is a war inside, it becomes  my reality. At the age of 16, I was still unclear which career to pursue. By chance I have put together my first, very colorful and outrageous performance at avant-garde fashion festival in Tbilisi. The satisfaction with outcome and  feedback of the show triggered the understanding, that art would be the medium in which I would be able to realize my energetic flow. I have started  to work with different extensions of  design, such as fashion, industrial design and so on. By the end of the 90’s Georgia was politically  destabilized  after two civil  wars. I have decided to emigrate to NYC. My art was very chaotic at that time, as my surrounding was. as I could not establish art form that I would have liked to work with. In New York I have worked as costume and set designer for films and theater for many years, before coming to realization, that only working for myself would let me exist as artist and this would be only way of self-expression. In 2009 I have premiered  my first performance show at Ideal Glass gallery, New York, and have produced lots of work since.With my background in fashion, and with knowledge of sewing, embroidering and other craft techniques, I create work that always has certain sensibility. I always experiment with various mediums and mix them together, for example performances with wearable sculptures  and mixture of video and sewing craft.  Most recently I have been fascinated with culture of carpet and tapestry making in Georgia, in which women preserved  history and express themselves for generations. I’m mesmerized  by simple , yet esoteric and deeply meaningful ornaments they used in this craft. As a male artist, usage of traditionally feminine craftsmanship and the idea of gender bending as an art form is interesting for me.I like using this technique because of its meditative workflow, as well as intensity of conceptual visualization. I’m trying to show it in different  light  of a context of contemporary art.”

Chronology of the Artist

Exhibitions

2017

“Kinto Dreams” solo show at ARTAREA Tbilisi

“Vestiphobia” workshop and exhibition at Par Gorria Gallery , Havana Cuba

2016
“Precarious Constructs,” Venus Knitting Art Space, Brooklyn, NY;
#NewTiflis, commissioned by Tbilisi City Hall in occasion of Annual City Festival “Tbilisoba,” Uta Bekaia + Levan Mindiashvili, Georgia;
“Night Intervention” Uta Bekaia + Levan Mindiashvili, State Silk Museum, Tbilisi, Georgia;
“Unintended Archeology” Uta Bekaia + Levan Mindiashvili, The Lodge Gallery, New York City;
2015

“Manifest Through Form – A Route of Evanescence,” Center for Contemporary Art, Batumi, Georgia;
Art Isterium – International Forum for Contemporary Art, Tbilisi Historical Museum, Georgia;
“The School of Kiyv,” 2nd Kiyv Biennial, Ukraine;
“Manifest Through Form – A Route of Evanescence,” Kuad Gallery, Istanbul 14th Biennial parallel project part of Kiyv Biennial, Turkey;
“The Seventh Sky,” Solo Exhibition, The Vazquez Building, Brooklyn;
“Heritage,” Rich Mix Art Center, London, UK;
“Crossing The Boundaries.03,” AT388, Rotterdam, The Netherlands;
2013

“Heritage,” Georgian National Museum, Tbilisi, Georgia;
“Pheromone,” Art Basel Miami Beach, Miami, FL;
“Spotlights on Georgian Contemporary Art,” Dhadamus Contemporary, Brussels, Belgium;

“A Map of My Heart,” Popiashvili Gvaberidze Window Project, Tbilisi, Georgia; “Morphing,” Berliner Liste13, Dhadamus Contemporary, Berlin, Germany; “Crossing The Boundaries.02,” AT388, Rotterdam, The Netherlands;

Performances

2017

“paradise lost” performance at Mercedes benz Fashion week Tbilisi

“Vestiphobia”  Performance at Fabrica del Arte Cubano, Havana, Cuba

2016
“Uta Bauhaus UTA,” ODETTA, Brooklyn, NY;

“DaDa Ball,” homage to Iliad Zdanevich, Garikula Residency, Georgia; “Night Intervention,“ State Silk Museum, Tbilisi, Georgia;
“The last chepter,” Ideal Glass Gallery, New York City;

“Unintended Archeology,” The Lodge Gallery, New York City;
“The Fairy Night,” Art Park Residency, New York City;
“Elements,” FashionClash, Maastricht, Netherlands;
2015

“Berikaoba,” Tbilisi City Parade, Georgia;
“Fuasia Tatasia,” Movement Theater, Tbilisi, Georgia;
2014

“Duality,” FAT Toronto Fashion and Arts Festival, Canada;
“Duality,” Art a Porter, Bryant Park, New York City;
“Fuasia Tatasia,” Peras de Olmo – Ars Continua, Buenos Aires, Argentina; 2013
“Purple Jester,” FAT Toronto Fashion and Arts Festival, Canada;

FashionClash, Maastricht, Netherlands; Brighton Fashion Week, UK;
La Guillotine, Paris, France;

“Sweatshop Boogie,” Williamsburg Fashion Week, Brooklyn, NY; 2012
“Wedding,” Tbilisi Fashion Week, Georgia;

“Days of a Dandy,” Ideal Glass Gallery, New York City; “TRANSpolation,” FAT Toronto Fashion and Arts Festival, Canada; 2011

“Pheromone,” Laguanacazul Art Gallery, Buenos Aires, Argentina; “Uta Levan,” Tbilisi Fashion Week, Georgia;
2010

“Saint Hollywood,” Ideal Glass Gallery, New York City;

Tbilisi Fashion Week, Georgia;
FAT Toronto Fashion and Arts Festival, Canada;

2009
“Icons,” Ideal Glass Gallery, New York City;