The Rustaveli Theatre, Tbilisi
Location: Tbilisi, Georgia
Status: Phases 1 and 2 complete
Budget: Not disclosed
The intention for the project, and the clients, is to re-establish the basement space of the Theatre, and other unused spaces to create a broader and more varied collection of uses and events within the National Theatre of Georgia.
The basement of the theatre housed the famous Kimerioni restaurant, an avante-garde artistic café, between 1917-1921 and the murals of artists such as Lado Gudiashvili, Serge Sudeikin and David Kakabadze still adorn the walls. The Kimerioni was an informal space, accessed directly from the street, that served food and local wine, in which performance and art mixed with drinking and regularly animals wandering in off the street and was the beating heart of Tbilisi’s cultural scene at the time.
Building on the character and intentions of The Kimerioni and the artists who inhabited it, the project is to provide less formal uses that allow people to engage more easily with the Theatre itself and to provide a contemporary programme of events and spaces to serve Tbilisi’s growing cultural and artistic community.
The project, through its programme and architecture, seeks to connect the theatre with an international culture of artistic endeavour that is built upon the strong Georgian cultural and artistic heritage and character.