Thea Djordjadze

Oranienburger Straße 18
April 30–June 25

It’s fitting that Georgia-born Berliner Thea Djordjadze makes careful use of the greenery behind this gallery without ever inviting the viewer outside. She knows that the looming windows to the backyard garden are usually hidden with drywall and she exposes them, save for the silver hinged shutters and a sheet of Plexiglas covering one, which is painted with a pastel wash of yellow and blue. The genteel view is multiplied by its reflection in the polished stainless steel used to annex the first two areas of the exhibition.

Djordjadze built the space out into three chambers: this first room, a metal tunnel, and the last, where raw plywood cuts the space into a smaller one, as in the early stages of home renovations, with reflective Plexiglas tacked to the perimeter. Both the first and last rooms are empty, save for objects assorted around the periphery or displayed on the walls. In the entry room is a pair of ambiguous concrete slabs and mahogany framed plaster paintings. One, Untitled, 2016, features a curved chair back from her installation at Karlsaue Park for Documenta 13. In the final area above the exit from the makeshift steel corridor is another reworked piece: a yellow foam and Plexiglas bench titled Only Way Is to 200 It, 2016, which looks suspiciously like museum furniture.

Words such as translation and abstraction are often thrown around in regard to Djordjadze’s work. Perhaps this is because it quietly begs a narrative while playfully eschewing clarity. Here, a woman is saddled with making a warm, modernist home out of an unwieldy space. Moving through the installation, one is surrounded by trippy idyllic suburban views from windows across the way. Lest one forget the show’s title, this is a place for “listening the pressure that surrounds you.”

View of “Thea Djordjadze: Listening the Pressure That Surrounds You,” 2016.

View of “Thea Djordjadze: Listening the Pressure That Surrounds You,” 2016.