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Europalia arts festival heads to Georgia this autumn
The prestigious arts biennial Europalia turns its attention to the culture of the Caucasian country of Georgia from October 2023.
Initially focusing on the art scene of its bustling capital Tbilisi, the four-month programme offers a varied programme of exhibitions, performances, concerts, films and literature in venues across Belgium.
After its railway-themed edition Trains & Tracks in 2021, the multidisciplinary festival returns to its focus on an individual country.
Central themes will be the multi-voice singing tradition polyphony and remembrance. The latter explores past and present conflicts, including Georgia’s memories of the Soviet regime.
History underpins the opening exhibition of the festival. The avant-garde in Georgia (1900-1936) at Bozar in Brussels highlights a largely forgotten chapter in the European art world. The country enjoyed a flourishing art scene during this period; artists blended East and West traditions when decorating cafes and restaurants. Paintings, drawings, film, photos, poetry and costume will serve as a testament to artists persecuted during the Soviet era.
Another exhibition presents unseen treasures from Georgian collections at the Art & History Museum in Brussels. It provides an insight into the country’s rich history, from the Bronze age to its forging of precious metals and current vibrant wine culture.
As ever, Europalia organises artist residencies and opportunities for interdisciplinary contemporary collaborations.
4 October to 14 January
Multiple locations across Belgium
Photos: Performance 'Phaedra in Flames' by Royal District Theatre, Tbilisi © Bobo Mkhitar via Royal District Theatre; Shota Rustaveli “The Man in the Panther’s Skin”, 1646, copyist and illustrator Mamuka Tavakarashvili © National Center of Manuscripts