Black Sea Link Alumnus
BSL Black Sea Link
Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University, Georgia
In the proposed project I plan to organize information about contemporary “creative urban interventions”1 in and about Tbilisi, analyze the general picture of the emergence of such practices in this context and start exploring some of them individually, which will later be helpful for studying their role in the transformation of the city.
The country of Georgia started to go under intense phase of reforms and transformations since the Rose Revolution in 2003. Of course, one of the centers for the changes was its capital Tbilisi, urban context of which has faced a rather controversial situation.
In one of my previous research,2 through visual representations I looked at he changing image of the city.
By following the theories offered in urban anthropology3 we could say that there are three main aspects of contemporary Tbilisi that exist in its complexity.
The first one concerns the existence of Soviet Past in the city, still is usually neglected, instead of rethinking.
The post-‐Soviet state of Tbilisi emerges the second category, where due to the radical emergence of nationalism, emphasis is placed on broadly speaking ‘traditional’ urban elements. The third one is the desire of the country to be represented as equally ‘developed’ as usually referred, hence, bringing new forms connected to the ‘west’. Paradoxically, The new establishments and symbols are the most discussed and criticized, while being still favored for country’s future.
1 Chigholashvili, D., 2015. Imagining Public [Space]: Socially Engaged Interventions and Transformation in Bucharest. In:
Vainovski-‐Mihai, ed. 2015. New Europe College Black Sea Link Program Yearbook 2013–‐2014. Bucharest: New Europe College, pp.21-‐44.
2 Visual Imaginations and the Future Image(s) of Tbilisi, article to be published; written as a result of my research during
2013, under the H. Boell Foundation South Caucasus Office regional scholarship program.