Both nations are rich with cultural and demographic diversity, and the enclaves, autonomous regions and break-away republics such Abkhazia and South Ossetia within and outside their borders underline the ethnic, religious, cultural and political complexities of the South Caucasus region. We met with refugees from the conflict in Abkhazia in Georgia who live in a massive hot spring spa complex in Tskaltubo, once built for both Soviet’s workers and political elite.
Artists and independent cultural organisations were our cicerones. They guided us through the cultural landscape, as we visited both the capitals, Tbilisi (Georgia) and Baku (Azerbaijan), and a number of smaller regional towns and villages like Hopa (Turkey), Tskaltubo and Telavi (Georgia), Sheki, Agsu and Ciyni (Azerbaijan).
The Turkish border town of Hopa was visited during September 2010 by Intercult’s Black/North SEAS project during the SEAS Xpedition (SEAS X). The SEAS X event on the northern coast of Turkey and in Batumi are the prototype for the CORNERS R&D project.
The Caucasus Xpedition was supported by the Swedish Institute; The Arts Council of Northern Ireland; The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport Adjara; and the Ministry of Culture Azerbaijan.