Greece

Put order in its place, disturb the stones of the road / André Breton and Paul Éluard, The Immaculate Conception

This selection presents works by three Greek artists of different generations who negotiate notions of order and subversion, independence and interdependence, through different, mainly sculptural, practices. The choice of artists and works is based on their conceptual, gestural and constructional approach in inventing an idiosyncratic spatial poetry challenging the given order of things. The works redefine the use and meanings of commonplace materials and well-known texts by isolating and recontextualizing them. They generate gaps in established systems of perception by shifting contents and displacing contexts. They translate the world through objects and images and suggest an alternate scale to confront its realities and possibilities.

 

Kostas Bassanos, in his sculptures and video works, illuminates the poetic qualities of the ordinary through gestural displays. He updates the meaning of objects, words and materials by marking their sculptural dimension and activates the space as a field of open possibilities by punctuating it. His work draws on the subversive aspects of romanticism to question settled limits and relationships.

Nowhere, 2009. Plaster (cast pallet), ink, 120 x 570 cm. Courtesy: the artist and Ileana Tounta Contemporary Art Center

 

Nowhere is a cast in plaster of pallet wood. The pallet, as an object of storage and transportation connected to trade and economic growth, is a recurrent medium in Bassanos’s work, which is used here to form and deliver meaning. Nowhere as a word transcribed to a sculptural vocabulary and acquiring a physical substance, becomes part of the exhibition space and defines it. It leans on the borderline between the floor and the wall, on the spatial limits which form a horizon. Nowhere as a word gives a name and an existence to a place that does not exist. However, Nowhere marks the place in which it is contained as non-existing, defining the space while negating it. Yet, if separated in two, it can be read now here and it is left to the viewer to define where nowhere is. 

Shifting More, 2012. A3 paper, ink, 40 x 40 cm. Courtesy: the artist and Ileana Tounta Contemporary Art Center

 

Kostas Bassanos in his sculpture uses materials, usually of industrial mass production, as autonomous forms and minimally intervenes on them to reconfigure them conceptually. The stack of A3 paper on the floor refers to sculpture as a stratification of material but also to the tradition of late modernism. Shifting More alludes to Thomas More’s Utopia. Utopia is understood here through the dynamics of displacement, marking a process of shifting borders either of subjective or physical nature. 

La Rivoluzione Siamo Noi, 2010. Pallet wood, ink, plaster, 600 x 500 cm. Courtesy: the artist and Ileana Tounta Contemporary Art Center

 

La Rivoluzione Siamo Noi is a work embodying its title. Each letter, made from pallet wood, is independent and supports itself, while all the letters together form the phrase: we are the revolution, referencing Joseph Beuys’s famous work. Kostas Bassanos updates Beuys’s concept by reconstructing it. He readdresses the revolutionary potential of we, individually and collectively, through the relationship of the letters and in this way he physically engages the public.

 

Kostas Bassanos is born in 1961 and lives and works in Athens, Greece. More works at: http://www.bassanos.gr/ and http://www.art-tounta.gr/

 

 

Kostas Roussakis constructs sculptures and photographic images, which expose unsaid or unfulfilled sides of things. He confronts functions with representations and lays bare their contradictions. Mostly monumental and at the same time ephemeral, rough but also delicate, his works are at odds with themselves and bring forth the underlying layers of reality, its conflicts and potentials. 

Tempo Libero (model), 2010. Foam board, pins, 57 x 37,5 x 37 cm. Courtesy: the artist and Elika Gallery

 

Tempo Libero is a model of gallows. The reproduction of a murder mechanism, which bears a stage, revisits the notion of the imposition of death as a social condition for the maintenance of law and order and its presentation as spectacle. The model of an outdated execution tool with an ambiguous yet explicitly ironic title, does not only recall a fearsome reality of the past, but questions the present mechanisms of social justice, even where the death penalty has been abolished. Tempo Libero challenges the idea of the obsolete as being harmless, the right to life as taken for granted regardless of the conditions of living. 

Pier Paolo Camineti, 2007. Extruded and expanded polystyrene, 470 x 500 cm. Courtesy: the artist and Elika Gallery

 

Pier Paolo Camineti is an in-situ, large-scale, ephemeral public sculpture that was installed for three days in the middle of a basketball court underneath an urban overpass. It is a hybrid structure of bleachers and a portable gas stove. The common use of this stove is to prepare coffee but it can also be used as a makeshift explosive in guerrilla practices. The reconstruction and displacement of the bleachers in the center of the court, metaphorically places the spectators in the position of actors. The paradoxical assemblage of the stove and the bleachers alludes to the explosive potential of the people when assembled. However, the fragility of the material of the construction implies the unstable character of this potential, while it literally transfers the responsibility of the work’s use to the spectators who can either contemplate or ruin it.

Something Like a Dream, 2011. Wood, playmobil, 7,5 x 37,5 x 37,5 cm. Courtesy: the artist and Elika Gallery

 

If a symbol is a representation of a concept and can deliver meaning through a shape, Something Like a Dream is an interpretation; it translates the content of a form to another form, superimposes the one on the other and brings forth the reality of an abstraction in an attempt to comprehend the human condition. The swastika, used as the emblem of Nazism after the 1920s, within the present socioeconomic conjuncture, while neo-Nazi ideologies gain significant power, does not only recall a collective trauma of the past but constitutes a current menace. The work’s title relates the image to the symbolic content of dreams. Something Like a Dream might be a nightmare but by rendering the danger visible, it brings it into consciousness.

 

Kostas Roussakis is born in 1971 and lives and works in Athens, Greece. More works at: http://www.elikagallery.com/

 

 

Zoe Giabouldaki creates self-sustainable universes out of fragmented parts. She makes sculptures, photographic images and sometimes combines both practices in her ‘sculptural collages’. Her structured yet abstract objects and images are magnified miniatures of a world recomposed out of its leftovers. In her work, the container and the content unite in a process of strength balance following a narrative of chain associations. 

Unknown & Untitled, 2011. Photograph mounted on plasterboard leaning on the floor and against the wall (detail), 70 x 50 cm. Courtesy: the artist 

 

Zoe Giabouldaki’s work is based on the concepts of connection and support. In Unknown & Untitled all the different elements are interrelated, carrying and supporting the others while being carried and supported by them. They form a system of connections and separations, which balances forces of desire and feasibility. A photograph of a hammer in a plastic bag hanging by a nail on a wall, mounted on a piece of plasterboard leaning on the floor and against the wall, composes a long and intriguing scenario in which every ‘character’ has a leading and supporting role. 

ΔΝ22, 2011. Photograph – note from the leftover material collection. Courtesy: the artist

 

Zoe Giabouldaki’s practice includes collecting and cataloguing fragments, materials and leftovers which she comes across. She keeps notes and photographs them acting like an archaeologist of the future who tries to make sense of a past world out of its waste. ΔΝ22 is a fragment presented detached from its environment, as a sample of an unknown something under a microscope. This magnified tiny portion of the world composes a material, abstract, yet autonomous, universe.

Hoisting, 2012. Wood, marble, polymeric material, two mounted photographs, mirror, base, 50 x 100 x 48 cm. Courtesy: the artist

 

Hoisting, 2012. Wood, marble, polymeric material, two mounted photographs, mirror, base (detail), 50 x 100 x 48 cm. Courtesy: the artist

 

Hoisting is a sculptural collage. The work unfolds its different parts from different points of view and bears the tension of its composing fragments being interconnected while remaining distinct. The relationships between them form a network. Hoisting is a microcosm in which the matter, its image and its reflection support, project, communicate and extend each other.

 

Zoe Giabouldaki  is born in 1982 and lives and works in a random place. More works at: http://giabouldaki.info/

 

Galini Notti

Galini Notti (born 1980) is an independent curator based in Athens, Greece. She holds a Bachelor degree in Philosophy from the University of Ioannina, Greece and has received graduate degrees in Aesthetics from Paris 1 University and in Museology from the Ecole du Louvre, Paris, France. Recently she curated the group show … at 3 137, a dynamic artist-run space in Athens, and co-curated the group show Vanishing Point at Action Field Kodra, an annual contemporary art exhibition in Thessaloniki. Previously, she curated the group show All that melts into air is solid at Elika Gallery and co-curated the shows Studios and Chain Reaction at The Art Foundation in Athens. She is currently working at Xippas Gallery and her professional experience includes work in the curatorial departments of the Musée d’Orsay, MoMA, and the Athens Biennial. 

Lo and Behold

Lo and Behold is a non-profit organization based in Athens, Greece, serving as a platform for the production of cultural activities, both in Greece and abroad, with a focus on contemporary art. LaB's objective is to highlight the work of art itself as the outcome of artistic inquiry, rather than as a commercial product. LaB is concerned with research and experimentation regarding new methods and strategies of contemporary art production and management. It aims at dialogue and direct involvement with diverse social and cultural frameworks from all over Europe. Given current socio-economic circumstances, this dialogue is now more important than ever. 

www.loandbehold.gr

30 June 2017 / by / in
Daily Lazy Presents

Daily Lazy has invited three artists connected with the Athenian art scene to introduce themselves and their practice through a display of personal statements and images.

Focusing on the relationship between local and global, we decided to introduce the work of three Greek artists who are currently based in New York, Brussels and Stockholm but retain their connection to Athens. 

 

IRINI MIGA (b. 1981) lives in New York

In my practice I use basic sculptural materials like clay, wood, and plaster, juxtaposed with everyday ephemera, to make visible the interstices of present time, memory and bodily presence. My installations investigate the fragmentary nature of memory: its existence as both images in the mind, and as actual objects.

As a means of challenging the norms of narration, I explore any given space as a blank paper on which I “draw” my sculptures while aiming to create a relationship between figuration, abstraction and materiality.

www.irinimiga.com

 

Work in Progress, Studio Installation View, ceramic, paper, kitchen-cloth, thread, wood, cement, plaster, air, wall paint, dimension variable, 2014.

 

Eyes Wide Open, wood, glazed ceramic, crystal, plaster, marble, acrylic color, 178 x 53.5 x 33 cm, 2013.

 

Try to Catch Me if You Can, ceramic, in total: 36 x 45 x 28 cm, 2013.

 

Untitled, wood, welcome carpet, glazed ceramic, marble,  paper, gold leaf, cement, in total: 125 x 228 x 102 cm, 2013.

 

Redefining Obstacles, wood, resin, marble dust, acrylic color, metal, mirror, glazed ceramic, 63.5 x 137 x 30 cm, 2012.

 

Artist’s Material Chamber, wood, glazed ceramic, plaster, metal, wire, dust, paper, glass, in total: 74 x 90 x 20 cm, 2013.

 

 

GIORGOS KONTIS (b.1981) lives in Brussels

My work focuses on painting and simultaneously becomes a questioning on its function as both a process and an image. A process which is itself transformed into image, or otherwise, an image that comes as the outcome of the whole procedure of painting. Painting comes in this way as a multilayered metamorphosis, a ‘highly personalized semiotic activity’1, or ‘transition’2, to a physical object which functions in a similar way to the use of language by poets. In this way what was there in the first place to be said or transmuted may remain even unsaid, and what matters at most is rather the visual outcome of this whole route.

Through the contemplation on the process of painting I have become concerned with issues of authenticity and originality in the act of it. I am concerned with where abstract painting stands today, as also, with the questioning of an almost sacred aspect that the painted image tends to get, its function as an Icon and with ‘the making of art as a heroic act of original creation’3. These questionings and concerns take place both in the process of my painting, as also, in the use and the display of the painted image. 

1. Isabelle Graw, ‘’Thinking through Painting’’ 2012

2. David Joselit, ‘’Painting Beside Itself’’ October 130 (2009)

3. Jan Verwoert, ‘’Living with Ghosts: From Appropriation to Invocation in Contemporary Art’’ 2007

http://giorgoskontis.com/

 

Exhibition view, 2013, Metelcova Ljubljana

 

Exhibition view, 2013, Wolke Brussels

 

Untitled (The Inner Landscape series), 180 x 250 cm, 2013, oil, acrylic and enamel paint on canvas. 

 

Exhibition view2013, De Service Garage Amsterdam 

 

Exhibition view, 2012, Show Hall Den Bosch 

 

Untitled (Blinky Palermo series), 27 x 21 cm, 2014, Encaustic on wood 

 

Exhibition view, 2014, Ruimte Caesuur Middelburg 

 

 

ANASTASIOS LOGOTHETIS (b. 1979) lives in Stockholm

 Personal Statement – The Possibility of a Beach

The long-term project The Possibility of a Beach commenced with the artist’s withdrawal from the confines of the art world to a solitary part on the coast of Crete, Greece, for 90 days during the summer of 2010. The passing of every day was documented in writings around a wide spectrum of concepts all influenced by the premise of a life spent on a beach. Texts have ever since been used in a non-consecutive sequence as the basis for works of art and as the only constant point of return in the midst of the artist’s incessant traveling. Idleness, a contemplative mode of mind, is used as an analogy for strictly private feelings and concepts that are increasingly made difficult to inhabit in our hyper-connected societies. What cannot be mediated in economical, scientific or narrative terms is increasingly marginalized and made useless. Objects and performances are engaged to manifest a counterpoint position. The inherent qualities of their purely physical and visual mediation are used as aid to subvert the relationship between the useless and the measurable, the virtual and the tangible, the solitary and the sociable. A new economics of being emerges. The works, linked to specific days, can be combined in space and time in a modular fashion by a curator, or other various agents, to form a narrative. When a different constellation occurs between the days the narratives are dislocated to form alternate ones. 

https://vimeo.com/groups/252561

 

Documentation still from A Day by the Beach (day#33), 2007, performance with single-channel video My Body (day #33).

 

Still from My Body (day #33), 2007, single-channel video, 60 sec on loop, https://vimeo.com/92390174

 

Still from Untitled (Stocktrading Apparatus) (day #40), 2009-2011, single-channel video, 4 min 23 sec, https://vimeo.com/34775697

 

Documentation still from Striptease (day #19), 2013, performance, https://vimeo.com/63425577

 

Installation view Water Animation #1 (day #21), 2010-2011, single-channel video, 40 sec on loop, https://vimeo.com/44446478

 

Installation view Water Animation #2 (day #65), 2011, single-channel video, 25 sec on loop, https://vimeo.com/44617513

 

Still from Invention #3 (Wavefloor) (day #65), 2011, single-channel video, 2 min 3 sec, https://vimeo.com/25973463

 

 

Daily Lazy

Daily Lazy, founded in 2011 in Athens Greece, aims to present projects touching on contemporary art issues through collaborations with artists, curators, organizations, and other practitioners involved in the arts.  Daily Lazy has organized projects which revolve around the nature of artistic practice; the environment of the atelier (In The Studio, Kunsthalle Athena 2013), collaborations between artists (Hosted In Athens, an invitation to collectives, 2012) and the role of conversation in art (A conversation with, new project). The Daily Lazy projects http://dlprojects.tumblr.com/ develop through methods of documentation, research and archiving on the online blog http://daily-lazy.blogspot.de/

The current Daily Lazy team, comprising artists Stelios Karamanolis, Tula Plumi and Yorgos Stamkopoulos is based between Athens and Berlin. 

30 June 2017 / by / in