Sophio Medoidze Xitana + Let Us Flow
A two-part ode to the mountains about ritual and modernisation, community and division, local dialect and film jargon.
Let Us Flow - 63min, 4K color, sound, 2023
A long poetic ode to the mountains, is a two-part feature-length film about the isolated mountain region of Tusheti in northeast Georgia. Tushetians believe that odd years are ruled by the goddess Dali, protector of wild animals, and that even years belong to Saint George. The film follows this structure, with both parts being filmed in 2021 and 2022 respectively. In the process, Medoidze is interested in linguistic parallels between Tushetian dialect and film jargon, between 'hunting' and 'filming'. Let Us Flow examines the importance of ritual and the way modernisation and migration change the rural landscape. Using innovative audiovisual techniques, the film offers a nuanced perspective on the symbolic and physical divisions within a culture where ancestral sanctuaries are only accessible to men.
Xitana - 6min HD color, sound, 2019
The first film in Medoidze’s Tusheti Trilogy, Xitana is centred around a bareback horse race tradition in Tusheti mountains – a display of masculinity as much as of the fragility of the community trying to maintain its cultural integrity. Nowhere else is this conflict of desires more pronounced than during Atengenoba, the region’s traditional summer festivities, with young Tushetians looking increasingly more like the teenagers anywhere else, ditching their traditional dress for Norm-core.
with English subtitles
The screening will be accompanied by a reading, in presence of the artist.
Sophio Medoidze (Tbilisi, Georgia, lives and works in London) combines film, photography, writing and sculpture to explore the poetic potential of uncertainty. For a while, she worked anonymously as a member of the Clara Emigrand collective to disseminate her work outside the gallery context. The desire for community (real and imagined) drives her narrative work, questioning the interplay between rural and urban, language and translation, as well as gender politics and dynamics.
Medoidze's films are known for their use of innovative audiovisual techniques and have been shown at international film festivals, including the Oberhausen short film festival and the European Media Art Festival. Her work has been shown at Tate Modern, Centre d'art Contemporain de Brétigny, LUX London, Fondation Vincent van Gogh, Serpentine Gallery and Whitechapel Gallery, among others. Her short story collection Bastard Sun will be published by Distanz and Kona Books in 2023. Medoidze's films are distributed by LUX, London.
In collaboration with Europalia Festival