ETERI CHKADUA American, (born Tbilisi, Georgia), leaving and working in NYC and Kingston, Jamaica, West Indies. CONTACT Picturing a Georgian Artist as a New Amazon and Woman of the World Introduction by Lilly Wei It would be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to walk by the confident, confrontational, beautifully executed paintings of Eteri Chkadua without coming to an immediate halt. Closely observed, realistically depicted, moderate to large self-portraits - or portrayals of alter egos with intense, challenging dark eyes, red lips and abundant hair who bear a striking physical resemblance to the artist - Eteri Chkadua’s pictures appear more monumental than they really are and might be designated as magic feminism, an over-the-top, pop-oriented, fantastic foray into female role-playing and the uses of self as subject, a strategy much in evidence since the 70s feminists. In Eteri’s (she prefers the use of her first name) paintings, however, these roles almost always posit women as seductresses, sultry, eruptive beauties of a wild and wily kind, part trollop, part heroine (Borat’s dream girl?) who often return the (male?) gaze with an unflinching one of their own although they can, at times, be demure, even pensive. Eteri, who was born and raised in Soviet Georgia, based in New York since 1992 via Chicago, Tokyo, Los Angeles, Montreal and currently living in New York and Kingston, Jamaica, uses her many invented personae to create a construct of contemporary feminine identity, a container for social and cultural values that are ultimately Georgian, in dialogue with the multiple perspectives and displacements that characterize many of today’s peripatetic artists. Eteri, however, dresses her radiant, neo-dada pop babes in the painstaking, labor-intensive techniques of the old masters (she only completes three or four paintings a year) which includes the use of oil paint on a linen support, a brilliant palette and high-definition, mimetic skills worthy of a sixteenth century Flemish artist, techniques acquired at the Georgian Academy of Fine Arts. These are autobiographical works, even a travelogue of sorts a semiotics of high and low tourism keyed to events in her life as they unfold with flashbacks that recall and reinvent the country she has left, like Hollywood movie posters updated, with a Caucasus slant. In the ten paintings for Venice, which span several years, from 1999-2006, she appears, for instance, as a dancer wearing a Muslim head scarf, twirling four coppercolored braids, beautifully formed tears that seem actually wet shimmering on her cheeks (Dancer, 2006); a contemporary girl with her head wrapped in a coral scarf, her skinny tank top leaving her midriff exposed, sitting backward on a boldly striped zebra (Unfaithful Wife, 2005); a bare-breasted tourist in an orange sarong and flip-flops surrounded by the tropical flora of Jamaica or Miami with horns implanted in her head (Tourist, 2004); a sly devil of a black she-cat about to pounce (Demon, 2002-2003); a teasing, smiling, gloriously red-haired latter day angel or chorine wrapped in soft white fur that suggest wings, strong, rosy legs kicking out from a ruffled white tutu in free fall against a heavenly blue ground (Dowry, 2003); and a tightly coiffed, black-haired woman on her back, her long braid snaking across the width of the painting, erotically curved into a hybridized yoga and Kama Sutra position, legs compressed, sex exposed, floated on a subtly patterned white field with lotus-like red flowers (Sleeping Goddess, 1999). Eteri, like many of her compatriots, is steeped in Georgian lore and idiosyncrasies, with a strong attachment to her native land, despite her cosmopolitanism. Many of the objects in her paintings are Georgian objects, chosen for their specific cultural meaning although Eteri, feels free to incorporate what she wants and change what she wants. Nonetheless, they form a coded system of visual signification that is part of the content of her paintings, such as the filigreed sword that is found in most Georgian homes, the horn of hospitality, offered to guests, in particular late ones, filled with strong drink which must be emptied in one gulp in order to catch up with the others, traditional copper vessels, fine, elaborate jewelry native to the region, or a white sheepskin hat that is worn by Georgian men which may be one way to channel home. Eteri Chkadua, with great spirit and independence, blends the traditional with the contemporary, the Georgian with the global and represents a younger generation of artists who navigate with style and a sturdy optimism the complications and expanded fields of our brave, sometimes terrifying, new world.





Eteri Chkadua, Retrospective Exhibition, MOMA, Tbilisi, Georgia;

Alien Bloom -- project From Venice Bienalle to Rome MACRO, Curated by Paolo Gradnis , Rome, Italy.


2018  Gaumarjos, The Pool NYC gallery, Milan, Italy;

2017  Alien Bloom, collaborative Installation with Gocha Chkadua, Longhouse reserve, East Hampton, NY;

2016  Bloom since January, collaborative Installation with Gocha Chkadua, Consulate of Georgia, New York;

2015  Anonymous . Europa House, Tbilisi, Georgia;

2014  The Book. Gala gallery, Tbilisi , Georgia;

2014  Alien Bloom, collaborative installation with Gocha Chkadua, GGrippo's art+design, Brooklyn, NY;

2013  An Unusual Exhibition, Museum of Literature, Tbilisi, Georgia;

2013  Selvatica, The Pool NYC gallery, Mexico City, Mexico;

2012  Colors Insulting To Nature, Collaborative installation with Gocha Chkadua; Gallery 151 , NYC ,

2012  Eteri Chkadua Paintings, The POOL NYC gallery, Bolognia, Italy;

2011  Eteri Chkadua Paintings, Museum of Dolls, Tbilisi Georgia;

2009  Remembering Heroes, National Music Theatre , Tbilisi, Georgia;

2009  Eteri Chkadua ,  Luna Kulturhus Konsthallen, Sodertaljie, Sweden;

2007  La Biennale di Venezia, Georgian Pavillion, Venice, Italy;

2005  Eteri Chkadua paintings , Corridor Gallery, Brooklyn, NY;

2004  Casas  Reigner Gallery, Miami, FL;

2004  Eteri Chkadua Paintings, Sperone Westwater, New York, NY;

1995  Art Chicago, Maya Polsky gallery, Chicago, IL;

1990  Eteri Chkadua Paintings, Maya Polsky Gallery, Chicago, IL;




2018  Divagazioni, Gian Enzo Sperone, Sent, Switzerland;

2018  East End Collected4, curated by Paton Miller, South Hampton Art Center, South Hampton, NY;

2018  Natural Proclivities, curated by Kimberly Power, Fiterman Art Center, NYC

2017  VITEL TONNE, The POOL NYC gallery, Palazzo Cesari-Marchesi, Venice, Italy;

2015  ART 3 AM, Sonchino, Italy;

2015  OPEN 18, Venice, Italy;

2015  60 Americans, Elga Wimmers gallery, NYC, Curated by Noah Becker, Terrence Sanders & Alexander Venet;

2015  A Palace With A View, The Pool NYC Gallery, Palazzo Cesari Marchesi, Venice, Italy;

2014  Water Tank Project, New York, NY, curated by Mary Jordan .

2014  Neighbors, curated by Paolo Colombo , Istanbul Modern Museum, Istanbul, Turkey;

2013  Bloom On The Edge, Kingston On the Edge, Kingston, Jamaica, West Indies;

2013  Wide Shot, The POOL NYC gallery, Venice, Italy;

2012  Portraits / Self -Portraits From The 16-Th to the  21-Th Century, Sperone Westwater  Gallery, New York,  NY;

2012  En Plein Air, Stux gallery, New York, NY;

2010  Scope Art Fair NY, The Pool NYC, New York;

2010  Gender check  Zacheta National Gallery, Warsaw,  Poland;

2009  Gender check, MuMok, Museum of Modern Art , Vienna, Austria;

2009  L’exposition géorgienne d’art contemporain, Château de Saint Auvent en Limousin, France;

2009  Open 12, Lido, Venice, Italy, curated by Paolo Grandis .

2008  Kingston on the Edge, Kingston, Jamaica;

2001  Art and Politics, Tribe, New York, NY;

2001  Dumbo Double Deuce, Brooklyn, NY;

1999  Nude, Aldredge Museum, Connecticut;

1997  Upton gallery, Buffalo State college Museum of Art and Archeology, University of Missouri, Missouri;

1997  Kitchen, New York, NY;

1997  Reversing the Gaze, Indiana University (Northwest) Museum, Indiana;

1997  From Georgia to Georgia, International Art Exhibition, Atlanta, GA;

1996  Art Chicago, Maya Polsky gallery, Chicago, IL;

1995  Vrej Baghoomian Gallery, New York, NY;

1994  Art Chicago, Maya Polsky gallery, Chicago, IL;

1990  Maya Polsky Gallery, Chicago, IL;





1996  Visiting Professor of Painting, Drawing and Composition, Graduate Program, New York Academy of Arts NYC;

1990  Artist in Residence and Visiting Professor, University of California, Department of Fine Arts and College of Creative Studies, Santa Barbara, CA;




1998  Creative time grant;

1997  New York Foundation for the Arts grant;

1994  Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant:




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