Politics in the Patterns: Georgian Historical Textile Resurrected

Georgian historical garments and ornaments were brought to life after two years of careful creation by local artists who were recreating fashion history from 11th through 18th centuries.

Art Palace director Giorgi Kalandia said that swathes of history can be seen in the garments.

“If you take a good look at the way garments change through the centuries, you will see the influence of every era on it. You can see even politics on the patterns. Here there are parts of Byzantine, Mongolia, Turkey, Persia and more. However, the main theme was always national,” stated Kalandia.

According to Kalandia, the garments were restored by imitating the colors and patterns of ancient garb and transferring them onto material used in the modern world.

According to textile artist Ekaterine Geguchadze, the working group of artists have researched various archives and taken part in nationwide expeditions to uncover necessary historical material to allow them to recreate the traditional patterns.

“The working process was unique and very interesting. We visited almost every single church in the country, studied mostly frescos and only after that started the re-creation process. I had a chance to have close contact with the past and felt it,” said Geguchadze.

Acceding to Kalandia, among restored garments are copies of the clothes worn by historical figures including Queen Tamar and King George IV, as well as those worn by members of the Jakeli, Dadiani and Gurieli noble families.

According to Kalandia, at the moment approximately 50 items have been completed and over 500 more will be finished soon.

The restored garments will be exhibited in the Art Palace, in Tbilisi.

Tatia Megeneishvili

24 September 2015 21:07