24 Jul 2020

Nikolas Ventourakis at Benaki Museum and CAN gallery

Zoë Foster

Nikolas Ventourakis at Benaki Museum and CAN gallery

This summer, Nikolas Ventourakis participates in two group exhibitions focusing on Contemporary Greek photography. These exhibitions are the ‘Sites of Memory’ exhibition at the Benaki Museum and ‘America’ at CAN Christina Androulidaki gallery in Athens.

America

The exhibition ‘America’ is inspired by French philosopher Jean Baudrillard’s text Amerique. Baudrillard describes America as the only realised utopia in this text. The exhibition is curated by Christina Androulidaki.

‘America’ includes work by six young and established contemporary Greek photographers. Each of them presents their own version of America. Furthermore, they all present their version with images captured from the 90’s until today. The exhibition is part of the Athens Photo Festival 2016.

Exhibiting artists include Panos Kokkinias, Yiorgos Kordakis, Dimitra Lazaridou, Antonis Theodoridis, Nikolas Ventourakis, Yiorgis Yerolymbos.

The Green Room I

Nikolas Ventourakis

The Green Room I

C-type print, 2016

80 x 100 cm

Sites of Memory

In addition, Ventourakis is exhibiting in ‘Sites of Memory’, a group exhibition curated by Penelope Petsini. This exhibition explores the notion of history, memory and their discussion in a social context.

The participating contemporary Greek artists, all of whom work with photography, address the subject of collective historical memory. As well as this, they consider its ambivalent coexistence with oblivion. Similarly, this happens whether recording contemporary sites in which dramatic events of Greek history have taken place. In the same way, it occurs by focusing on people and personal narratives in order to demonstrate that memory is conceived as a mode of representation. Therefore, we also see it as belonging ever more to the present.

Other artists in the exhibition include: Artemis Alcalay, Fani Bitou, Io Chaviara, Petros Efstathiadis, Pavlos Fysakis, Stergios Karavatos, Victor Koen, Nikos Markou, Fotis Milionis, Nikos Panayotopoulos, Avraam Pavlidis, Paris Petridis, Simos Saltiel, John Stathatos, Nikolas Venoutrakis,  Pasqua Vorgia.

The Green Room II

Nikolas Ventourakis

The Green Room II

C-type print, 2016

80 x 100 cm

Nikolas Ventourakis presents a new series of works on the occasion of these exhibitions. The central point in Ventourakis’ photographic work is the denial of a resolution. As well as this, it is an invitation to consider artworks that might have a documentary value. This can be as abstract creations of situations onto which we project what is recognisable and familiar to us. Ventourakis’ fascination lies in our need for stories to be conclusive. Similarly, his interest lies in apparent, simple pictures that cannot and do not explain a given situation.

The exhibitions run until July 30 and 31, 2016 respectively.

ISSP Residency, Latvia

The artist has also been selected as an artist in residence at the ISSP Residency programme in Latvia.

About the artist

Nikolas Ventourakis is a London-based artist. He has a MA in Photography from Central Saint Martins – University of the Arts London, London (2013). He is also the recipient of the Deutsche Bank Award in Photography in 2013 and a Celeste Prize finalist of the same year. Ventourakis has been a visiting artist and Fulbright artist fellow at the California Institute of the Arts (2014/15). In 2014, he exhibited at the Photographer’s Gallery in London as part of the exhibition ‘Fresh Faced Wild Eyed‘.

Collect photography by Nikolas Ventourakis