December 11, 2017
Welcome Benedikt Ledebur, editor
Lecture almost something like revenge by Isolde Charim, philosopher and publicist.
With a large body of work mainly comprising mixed-media paintings, Tamuna Sirbiladze was known for her distinctive style, which continually forged new terms between dichotomous relationships. Abstract and figurative, playful and serious, energetic and quiet, vibrant and muted, Sirbiladze’s work is characterized by both its intensity and flexibility. Known for the speed at which she worked, there is a quality of immediacy in her paintings, as if they provide direct access to her imagination. This primacy is perhaps most evident in her gestural, improvisatory paintings made with oil sticks on unstretched, raw canvas, which purposely retain the appearance of being unfinished. “As an artist,” Sirbiladze writes, “I don’t want to control what the representation will be seen as.” This catalogue presents a careful selection of these oil stick works along with her other paintings—including her celebrated V Collection (2012), which was made in dialogue with iconic works by Caravaggio, Giotto, Raphael, and Velazquez, as well as her later paintings focused on women’s bodies in intimate, underrepresented scenes, Sirbiladze’s response to male dominance in the art world.
With contributions by Max Henry, Anna Kats, and Julie Ryan, as well as a conversation with the artist and an arrangement of fifteen sonnets by her partner, Benedikt Ledebur, this publication provides a comprehensive survey of Sirbiladze’s works and practice.
Tamuna Sirbiladze (1971–2016) was born in Tbilisi, Georgia. She met and married the artist Franz West while studying at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, with whom she collaborated on several art projects and works, until his death in 2012. Her last years she lived together with Benedikt Ledebur. Her works have been featured in various exhibitions in galleries and museums in Europe, including at Galerie Gisela Capitain in Cologne in 2001, ColletPark in Paris and Jonathan Viner Gallery in London, both in 2008, and Charim Ungar Contemporary in Berlin in 2010. She received significant critical acclaim for two solo shows in New York in 2015, Take it easy at Half Gallery and “good enough” is never good enough at James Fuentes. Her show Two Projects at Almine Rech in Brussels opened shortly before her death in 2016.
Publisher: David Zwirner Books
Artist(s): Tamuna Sirbiladze
Contributor(s): Max Henry, Anna Kats, Benedikt Ledebur, Julie Ryan
Designer: Sarah Schrauwen
Printer: VeronaLibri, Verona
Publication Date: 2017
Dimensions: 8 x 10 ¾ in | 20.3 x 27.3 cm
Reproductions: 121 color
Retail: $30 | £25