Balkan Art Scene
15 Women At The Top Of The Greek Art Scene
Greece’s artistic legacy doesn’t just belong in the history books, it is also a major art world hotspot in the 21st century too. Documenta 14 took place in Athens, and Hydra is fast becoming an art hub in the summer months. In short, the art scene in Greece is one to look out for, and we’ve compiled a list of the women who are ensuring that Greece is an unmissable art destination.
Helena Papadopoulos, Founding Director of Radio Athènes, Institute for the Advancement of Contemporary Visual Culture @radio_athenes
Helena Papadopoulos is a curator and writer based in Athens and the founding director of Radio Athènes, Institute for the Advancement of Contemporary Visual Culture. She studied at the Royal College of Art, London and earned an MA in the History of Art from the Courtauld Institute of Art. She has organized numerous solo and group exhibitions, initiated the online archive All: Collected Voices, co-organized with Thomas Boutoux, designed by David Reinfurt, and coproduced with Goethe-Institut (2017) and programmed the eight-month long A Book Affair, a series of exhibitions, talks, readings, and performances around and about publications in partnership with Goethe-Institut (2018). She is also the editor of forthcoming Always Starts with an Encounter: Wols—Eileen Quinlan.
Eleni Koroneou, Owner Eleni Koroneou Gallery @elenikoroneougallery
Eleni Koroneou opened her eponymous gallery in 1989 in Athens, focusing on contemporary art and hosting innovative, singular and pioneering shows across a variety of media and genres. Eleni has been promoting and showing international artists in Greece and at the same time supporting Greek artists in the international arena. The Gallery’s artists have exhibited widely in museum and public spaces and have been included in important international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale, Documenta and Istanbul Biennale. Since 2016 Eleni is also an active member of the Art Cologne committee.
Marina Vranopoulou, Founder Dio Horia @vranopoulaki
Marina Vranopoulou is an art historian and curator. She founded Dio Horia Cultural Platform in 2015 with the mission of presenting emerging artists and organizing a residency program on the island of Mykonos for international artists. Since 2007 she is a permanent collaborator of DESTE Foundation and the director of the foundation’s exhibitions at its experimental Slaughterhouse space in Hydra. Her research interests focus on the contemporary art collector and how collecting affects the work of art at the stage of its creation.
Margarita Myrogianni, Artist @margaritamyrogianni
Margarita Myrogianni is a visual artist and Jewellery designer. She has presented her work in solo and group exhibitions in Great Britain, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, France, Norway, China and Greece. She collaborates with museums and institutions such as the Acropolis Museum, the British Museum, Benaki Museum, the Museum of Cycladic Art, the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, B&M Theocharaki Foundation, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre and the National Theatre of Greece.
Anna Kafetsi, Director annexM for the Visual Arts, Athens Concert Hall
Anna Kafetsi, a PhD holder in Aesthetics/Theory of Art (Sorbonne-Paris I), is the founding director (2000-2014) of EMST, the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens, and a former curator for the XX century Collections at the National Gallery, Athens. Since 2017 she is the founding director of annexM Visual Arts Center at Megaron-The Athens Concert Hall. She has curated many exhibitions including Metamorphoses of the Modern-The Greek experience, Politics of Art, and The Garden sees, as well as shows by artists, Shirin Newshat, Y.Z. Kami, Carlos Garaicoa and Dilek Winchester among others. She is the author of many catalogues, essays and monographs.
Rallou Panagiotou, Artist @ralloupanagiotou
Artist Rallou Panagiotou lives and works in Athens and Glasgow. Her newest body of work is featured in the exhibition curated by Margot Norton and Natalie Bell “The Same River Twice” / a collaboration between Deste Foundation and the New Museum. Other selected group shows include: All Collected Voices, Radio Athènes, Athens; Instructions for Happiness, 21er Haus, Vienna; La Nuit juste avant les forêts, DOC Paris (2017); ArtNow: Vanilla and Concrete, Tate Britain (2015-2016); Recent solo exhibitions include: Incorporeal Bundles, Bernier/Eliades, Athens; Two-Hander, Signal, Malmö (2017); Proto Copies, Glasgow International, Glasgow; Kalypso Volume II, Radio Athènes, Athens (2016). She has also made extensive work in theatre design including ‘The Waves’ by Virginia Woolf , ’Modern Noh Plays’ by Yukio Mishima, et al.
Ileana Nomikos, Founder Santozeum, @santozeum
Ileana Nomikos graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University with a thesis on a site-specific theatre and architecture project in the Black Sea port of Constanta, and a second thesis in poetry. She continued her studies with a doctorate in performance in antiquity at Stanford University. She directs and curates for the Santozeum art space in Thira, Santorini. The Santozeum hosts residencies, is a home to site-specific commissions, and has a yearly curatorial program with a focus on sound and performance. Ileana founded the Santozeum in 2012.
iLiana Fokianaki, Founder, State of Concept Athens, @stateofconcept
iLiana Fokianaki is a curator, writer, artist and also a former journalist. She changed the trajectory of the art ecology in Athens in 2013 by founding State of Concept, the first non-profit institution with a permanent location and yearly programming. State of Concept has showcased exhibitions of artists such as Laure Prouvost, Keren Cytter and Hito Steyerl, while hosting curators such as WHW (What How and for Whom) and Nick Aikens. She is currently working on a retrospective exhibition of Forensic Architecture, to open September 27th in Athens. Fokianaki is also one of few Greek curators active internationally, with curatorials for institutions such as KADIST Foundation, La Colonie Paris, Galerija Nova Zagreb, Kunsthal Extra City, Antwerp and e-flux, New York. She is a lecturer at the Dutch Art Institute, on the committee for Alserkal Avenue’s residency program and has been writing extensively on contemporary art for books and journals such as art agenda, e-flux, Frieze.
Rebecca Camhi, Founder Rebecca Camhi Gallery
After graduating from the American college of Greece, Rebecca Camhi went to Paris where she studied at the American College and then was an apprentice to Greek sculptor Takis in Paris. A few internships followed at important institutions such as Galerie Daniel Templon and CNAC Magasin centre d’erat Contemporain in Grenoble under the directorship of Adelina von Furstenberg. In 1992 she attended a curatorial course at Pecci in Prato and then worked as an assistant at the Documenta IX in Kassel curatorial team headed by Jan Hoet. Since then she is an independent art dealer and consultant between Athens and Paris and is the owner of the gallery Rebecca Camhi, which was founded in Athens in 1995. The gallery programme includes younger and more established artists who are both international and Greek.
Eva Stefani, Artist
Eva Stefani is a visual artist and documentary filmmaker. She uses video, super 8 film and painting to make short visual poems and observational documentaries. Currently, she is completing an autobiographical graphic novel. She is also editing her feature documentary ‘Days and Nights with Dimitra K.’ She works as an Associate Professor of History and Theory of Cinema, Faculty of Theatre Studies, University of Athens, and as a Visiting Professor at Freie Universität Berlin, Institut für Griechische und Lateinische Philologie. Her work as been exhibited extensively, including at Venice Biennale (2019) and documenta 14.
Loukia Alavanou, Artist, @loukialavanou
Loukia Alavanou is a Greek artist who has been working with film and exhibiting her work internationally for over a decade. She has divided her life between Athens, London and Brussels. Often referring to and influenced by historic animation and early associative montage techniques and psychoanalysis, her collage-like films explore the feminine voice in cinema, or indeed its absence, through the development of an increasingly personal language. Loukia was the winner of the 5th Deste Prize. Her films have been presented worldwide including Palais de BOZAR, Palais de Tokyo, KANAL centre pompidou, New Museum, Athens Biennale, Moscow Biennale, Kino der Kunst, Fioruchi Art Trust, The Museum of Cycladic Art. In 2018 Loukia held a retrospective exhibition at State of Concept in Athens. Her research-based VR short “New Horizons – Pilot”, commissioned by Onassis Culture in 2018, is the first VR film ever produced in Greece and a prologue to a longer VR film that she is currently developing.
Danai Giannoglou, Co-Founder Enterprise Projects, @danai_giannoglou
Danai Giannoglou is an independent curator and writer based in Athens. She is the co-founder and curator of Enterprise Projects, a project space functioning independently and periodically since September 2015 in Athens. Giannoglou is also the Editor of Enterprise Projects Journal, a publishing initiative by Enterprise Projects in the form of an online publication of newly commissioned theoretical and research essays. She has worked for public and private institutions in Athens and Paris, and between 2018-2019 Danai Giannoglou was the Exhibitions Archive Coordinator at DESTE Foundation for Contemporary Art. She has contributed texts in catalogues and online art magazines and she has curated exhibitions in Greece and abroad. Giannoglou holds an MA in Cultural Management and Curating from Paris 1 Panthéon – Sorbonne University in Paris. She has been a resident at Rupert, Lithuania, the 8th Gwangju Biennale International Curator Course, South Korea and she was part of NEON Curatorial Exchange 2019 in partnership with Whitechapel Gallery, London. Danai Giannoglou is a recipient of the 2nd SNF Artist Fellowship Program (Curating).
Ileana Tounta, Founder Ileana Tounta Contemporary Art Centre, @ileana_tounta_gallery
Ileana Tounta founded in 1988 the Ileana Tounta Contemporary Art Center was the first private multi-use cultural space in Athens. Ileana’s exhibition program includes various established Greek and international contemporary artists, meanwhile supporting the younger generation. For eleven years, from 1993 to 2004, she was the vice president of the Hellenic Galleries Association, as well as the president of the Organizing Committee of the Art Athina International Contemporary Art Fair. From 2014 until recently Ileana served in the Municipality of Athens as a member of the committee for the exhibition schedule of the municipal galleries. In 1994, Ileana was awarded “Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres” by the French Government.
Eugenia Vereli, Artist @euhenia_paradise_found
Eugenia Vereli lives and works in Athens, Greece. Her work can be seen as a series of stories which unfold to provide a narrative of how things are, not how they present themselves to be, capturing simple truths of society presented through a prism of traditional folklore elements. Deeply concerned with issues of identity and self-identification, gender, social status and sexuality, Eugenia challenges the position one holds in relation to freedom of self-expression. In 2008, following her graduation at the Hellenic American Educational Foundation and completion of her International Baccalaureate studies in Athens, Eugenia Vereli moved to London where she studied architecture at Central Saint Martins University of the Arts London, before returning home to focus solely on her art practice. She graduated from the Athens School of Fine Arts in 2018 under the tutelage of Nikos Tranos.
Amalia Vekri, Artist, @amalia_vekri
Amalia Vekri is a visual artist born and based in Athens. She is a graduate of Central Saint Martin’s college of Art and Design in London, the programme director of Haus N Athen and the founder of the curatorial/publishing project Asthenia.