ARTWORKS x Delta Restaurant @ SNFCC – II
22.06.22 @ 19:00
Photo © Jerome Galland
Delta Restaurant collaborates with ARTWORKS for the second consecutive year and presents works of Greek artists in the restaurant’s venue. The restaurant embraces art and organically integrates yearly rotating artworks in its interior and surrounding spaces.
Following the concept of sustainability, we are invited to think of art as part of diverse ecosystems and interdependent interactions. The artists presenting their work at Delta Restaurant – Zoi Gaitanidou,Vasilis Papageorgiou,Iris Touliatou Maria Mavropoulou, Antonis Theodoridis, Giorgos Kontis – are all awardees of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Artist Fellowship Program by ARTWORKS.
Zoi Gaitanidou, Untitled, 2017. Photo © Zak Viemon
Zoi Gaitanidou is using embroidery to create elaborate tapestries that combine abstract patterns with figurative elements. Tropical foliage, a recurrent element in her work, “is reminiscent of a naive derivative of neo-Expressionism that also evokes a contemporary take on the tropical vision of Henri Rousseau”, as art critic Roberta Smith has stated. In her work, dense embroidery in rich colors alternates with light pastel painting, referencing the changes in one’s state of mind: the meditative clearness of an empty mind in contrast to a whirl of thoughts and feelings. The persistently full areas of the works’ surface consist of smaller embroideries, a patchwork of different narratives.
Vasilis Papageorgiou, Together we don’t stand (I), 2021. Photo © Zak Viemon
Vasilis Papageorgiou (b. 1991, Athens) creates sculptures and installations inspired by places of leisure and environments where interactions within social groups take place: hotels, bars, casinos, stadiums, and streets. These works are amplified by the absence of the figure, creating an uncanny feeling for the viewer. In the coronavirus era, Papageorgiou’s works have a heightened potency due to our impeded ability to gather freely in such spaces, in many parts of the world. The spectre of this absence haunts these works as Papageorgiou attempts to present narratives between reality and fiction, yet also between theatrical scenes and quotidian life. Papageorgiou juxtaposes symbols and architectural elements synonymous with social gathering, such as benches, with a minimalistic form and aesthetic to present a new way to think about leisure, gathering and identity. Even with the figure absent in his work, Papageorgiou allows space for inquiry into habitual leisure practice, the presumption of human interaction, social gathering, the study of identification.
Iris Touliatou, Untitled (still not over you), 2020. Photo © Zak Viemon
In Untitled (still not over you) various work lighting typologies, collected mainly from defunct offices in Athens, are orchestrated and reinstalled – their lifetime remaining, unknown in exhibitions. Neither fully operative nor entirely exhausted, they are ready mades, objets – trouvés, serial, ordinary objects, in a peculiar state of functional latency. Their upcoming exhaustion is concisely and provocatively, elongated during repeated installations. They become a landscape of metabolic activity —of an amount of light that enters a room, of an amount of energy that leaves a room, of a certain amount of intention, the minimum amount of meaningful gesture. They are physical traces of a desire, or an impulse, glimpses of locations and surroundings. They provide evidence of personal and material limitations. They are also records of affect, meditations, manifestos, emotional contours of life during increasingly precarious times. They are essays on forces, and on resistance.
Maria Mavropoulou, Untitled (cloud) & Untitled (waterfall) from “The Desire for Consciousness” series, 2016. Photo © Zak Viemon
The images in the series “The Desire for Consciousness” by Maria Mavropoulou (b. 1989, Athens), avoid the use of verbal descriptions through the titles. In this context it is impossible to determine the time, place and conditions under which the photo was taken while the black background lacks any information that could help locate its subject in the real world. The object depicted is transferred to a virtual space, loses its material existence, becomes an idea and functions symbolically. The artist attempts to create new symbols, raising questions about how perceptions of the same stimulus vary and therefore, the amount of interpretations that can arise depending on the ever-changing circumstances.
Antonis Theodoridis, #4 & #3 Untitled from the series “From a Museum of Systematic Displacement”, 2019. Photo © Zak Viemon
The series “From a Museum of Systematic Displacemen” by Antonis Theodoridis is an homage to (as well as a link between) two Dadaist artists who have marked the medium of collage: Hannah Hoch with her celebrated work From an Ethnographic Museum (1929) and Max Ernst with his ingenious definition of collage as the culture of systematic displacement and its effects. The series of print collages presents a fictional collection of artefacts, forged through the meticulous pairing and collaging of disparate archival photographic images. The work scrutinizes the limits of photographic believability, its ability to produce and convey the illusion of an object, to create a visual likeness and to possess a degree of accuracy and truthfulness. Despite alluding to a sort of futuristic science fiction, it points backwards towards an alternate past, exploiting the chance meeting of two displaced historical realities on an unfamiliar plane.
Giorgos Kontis, Untitled (Ochre, Folds series), 2021 & Untitled (Red, Folds series), 2020. Photo © Zak Viemon
Giorgos Kontis (b. 1981, Athens) focuses on abstraction, the simplicity of the forms, the sense of the minimum. Materials such as wax, silk and the encaustic technique, with the sensuousness and tactility they have, play a central part in his practice; also, the way the works are displayed aspire to create an intimate relationship with the beholder. In the series “Folds”, Kontis recalls modernism and abstraction, and is interested in the function of the color field painting. This persistent reference in his work reveals his disposition for contemplation, deconstruction and formation of a new language that functions through the senses and the gaze.
Photo © Zak Viemon
Zoi Gaitanidou was born in 1981 in Athens, Greece. She is a graduate of the Athens School of Fine Arts and has also studied in the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. She is currently based between Athens and the island of Sifnos, Greece. Gaitanidou is using embroidery to create elaborate tapestries that combine abstract patterns with figurative elements resulting in an intensity that recalls tribal art. Tropical foliage is a recurrent element in her work, which -as art critic Roberta Smith has remarked “is reminiscent of a naive derivative of neo Expressionism that also evokes a contemporary take on the tropical vision of Henri Rousseau”-. Selected exhibitions include “Weavings: Painting and Tapestry in Greece from 1960 to present”, 2019, Benaki Museum Athens, Greece; “Clarity”, 2017, solo exhibition at The Breeder, Athens, Greece; “The Equilibrists”, 2016, Benaki Museum Athens, co-organized by The New Museum, (New York) and DESTE Foundation (Athens), curated by Gary Carrion Murayari, Helga Christophensen with Massimiliano Gioni, Athens, Greece; “Heaven”, 2nd Athens Biennale, 2009, Athens, Greece. Zoi Gaitanidou is represented by The Breeder, Athens. She is an awardee of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Artist Fellowship by ARTWORKS (SNF ARTWORKS Fellow 2019).
Vasilis Papageorgiou (b. 1991) is an artist living and working between Athens and Amsterdam. His practice investigates ideas of togetherness, communication and loneliness, as well as the expression of competition in everyday situations. He is particularly interested in semi-private/semi-public spaces such as bars, small-scale casinos and local football stadiums, where people reclaim the idea of free time and the right to be alone together with others. Papageorgiou studied at the Athens School of Fine Arts and at the LUCA School of Arts in Brussels. He received the Μontani Tesei Under 35 award in the 2020 edition of ArtVerona, while in 2019 he was awarded the 3Package Deal by the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts and in 2018 the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Artist Fellowship by ARTWORKS (SNF ARTWORKS Fellow 2018). Ιn 2016 he was a resident at Rupert residency in Vilnius, Lithuania and participated in other artist residency programs. He has presented his work at the Benaki Museum, at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center, at the MAXXI National Museum of 21st century art in Rome, at the 6th Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, at the BOZAR Center for Fine Arts in Brussels, at the contemporary art gallery UNA Galleria in Piacenza, at the Art-O-Rama inter-national art fair in France, at the Torino international art fair Artissima, and at Miart fair in Milan, among others. Papageorgiou is also the co founder of Enterprise Projects in Athens.
Ιris Touliatou (b. 1981, Athens) engages in a conceptual practice, which transposes the political, environmental and affective, and employs various mediums necessary for each intervention. Using sculpture, photography, sound, scent and text, her work often draws on found objects and creates open forms and shared experiences to comment on time, love, transience, mortality, economies and states of being. She has exhibited at: DESTE Foundation (GR)/New Museum (New York); Radio Athènes (GR); Exile (AUT); Beton Salon/Villa Vassilieff (FR); Manifesta 12, ΥΛΗ[matter]HYLE (GR); Leipzig Museum of Contemporary Art (DE); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (FR); Alcobendas Arts Centre CAA (ES)· Onassis Stegi (GR)· Ricard Foundation (FR); contemporary art center La Galerie CAA Noisy le Sec (FR); and the National Museum of Contemporary Art (EMST) in Athens. In 2012 she received the art prize Europas Zukunft from the Leipzig contemporary art museum GFZK, while in 2019 she was an artist-in-residence at Nanyang Technological University Center for Contemporary Art (NTU CCA) in Singapore and in 2020 she was awarded the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Artist Fellowship by ARTWORKS (SNF ARTWORKS Fellow 2020). She is currently based in Athens, Greece.
Maria Mavropoulou was born in 1989 and lives and works in Athens, Greece. She is a visual artist using mainly photography while her work expands to new forms of the photographic image, such as VR and screen captured images. Her work and research focus on the new realities created by the connectible devices and the contradictions between the physical and the digital spaces that we inhabit. A characteristic of her aesthetic approach is that the images she produces stand on the line between plausibility and its absence, potentiality and non-potentiality, the random and the constructed. Playing with the perception of viewers she aspires to question the role and power of photography in an era when it is dominant. Her first VR project Family Portraits has been awarded at the 60th Thessaloniki International Film Festival (2019), and she has also been selected among 30 Under 30 Women Photographers (2018) and as Young Greek Photographer by Athens Photo Festival (2016). Maria completed her MFA studies in 2018, at the Athens School of Fine Arts, from where she received her BA degree in 2014. Her work has been exhibited in institutions and museums in Greece and abroad. Maria Mavropoulou also works as a freelance photographer specializing in architecture and interior photography and she is a contributing photographer to The New York Times. She is an awardee of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Artist Fellowship by ARTWORKS (SNF ARTWORKS Fellow 2019).
Antonis Theodoridis is an Athens-based artist working in the medium of photography. He is a Fulbright Foundation scholar and holds a Photography MFA degree from the University of Hartford, USA. His practice is a mixture of traditional analogue photography along with digital processes, research, collage, and printing. Using a large-format view camera, he captures places and people producing sharp in detail and rich in color pigment prints. Following a road-trip along the Western States in 2014, his work Newspaper from the American West was published in Greece by Agra Publications in a newspaper-format photobook. Through his studio work he critically examines how archival images can reflect and shape western culture, while emphasizing the notions of cultural bias and the limits of historical knowledge. His process aims to rein-vent context and meaning through collage strategies, sculptural tropes and installation. In 2018, collaborating with the National Museum of History and Art (NMHA) in Luxembourg, he produced his work Unknown Relics / Relics of the Unknown, a still-life project exploring blind spots of museological practice by employing and photographing museum artifacts of unknown origin. His work has been presented in venues such as the Benaki Museum in Athens, the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography, the Disjecta Contemporary Art Center in Portland, or the C/O Berlin, and can be found in the collections of the European Investment Bank Institute, the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography and the Municipal Gallery of Thessaloniki and private collections. He is an awardee of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Artist Fellowship by ARTWORKS (SNF ARTWORKS Fellow 2020).
The work of Giorgos Kontis (b.1981, Athens) focuses on abstract painting and on its function as an image. Giorgos studied at the Athens School of Fine Arts, at the Academy of Visual Arts (AdBK) in Munich and at the Berlin University of the Arts (UdK). He holds an MFA from the St. Joost School of Art & Design in Breda (the Netherlands) and recently completed his practice-based PhD in Painting, at the Royal College of Art in London, on the notion of authenticity. He lives and works in Berlin and Athens. Recent shows include: Mother Tongue, Crux Galerie Athens (solo, curated by Katerina Nikou); fAN Archive, Vienna Art Foundation, Parallel Vienna 2018, Vienna (Exhibition concept/design by Herwig Müller); The Materiality of the Painterly Event, City of Athens Arts Centre (curated by Denys Zacharopoulos); Close, Closer, Fading, Lychee One Gallery, London (curated by Jonathan Miles); Project 1 // On Authorship, Space-Projects, Amsterdam (curated by Maud Oonk); Neither Innocent Nor Guilty, Daily Lazy Projects, Athens (curated by Giorgos Kontis); Bow Open, Ian Kiaer’s studio (solo project), London; O, Kunstbuero, Vienna (with Just Quist); The Same Sky, Lepsien Art Foundation, Düsseldorf. Talks include: Cultural Identity, Europe & Authenticity, Royal College of Art in London, with Gilane Tawadros and Luc Tuymans; Rijksakademie Open Studios, with Camiel van Winkel (Amsterdam); Authenticity in the Act of Painting symposium, De Pont Museum Tilburg (the Netherlands); TECHNE: Memory and Perception conference, Rich Mix (London). He is an awardee of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Artist Fellowship by ARTWORKS (SNF ARTWORKS Fellow 2021).
Αll photos © Zak Viemon
Delta is the uppercase 4th letter of the Greek alphabet. A triangle with three sides in perfect harmony. Just like Delta restaurant. A project shaped by three principles: Gastronomy – Sustainability – Culture