Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis. In the Belt of Change

EMST supporter of the exhibition

Ocean Flower Island - Hainan, China

Greece is the Guest Country of Honor in the “The Tides of the Century – 2020 Ocean Flower Island International Art Exhibition” which opened officially Today, May 20, 2021 in Hainan, China. The exhibition, inaugurated at the Ocean Flower Island Museum Park in Hainan’s Danzhou city, features 7 museums and 176 works by 95 artists from 24 countries.

Approved by China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism, the international exhibition is organized by the Chinese International Exhibition Agency (CIEA) and co-hosted by the Evergrande Fairyland Group and the China Arts and Entertainment Group Ltd. It is expected to run until Dec. 8, 2021 and become one of the biggest art events during this year in China.

 The Guest Country of Honor exhibition is titled Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis. In the Belt of Change [“命题 – 对立 – 统一,追随变化的轨迹”]. It has been conceived and curated by Ms. Katerina Koskina, supported by “POLITES”, Non-profit Cultural Association. The initiative of the Greek exhibition project and its coordination and production was undertaken by “PostScriptum” company
This year, Greece and China are celebrating the “Greece-China Year of Culture and Tourism”. Both Greece and China have placed this Exhibition under the “Greece-China Year of Culture & Tourism 2021”. Also this year, Greece celebrates the 200-year anniversary of the National Revolution that led to the establishment of Modern Greece, one of the earliest constitutional nation-states in Europe.

The Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis. In the Belt of Change exhibition, hosted in Museum No.6 which is fully dedicated to Greece, brings together an eclectic selection of more than 50 works (sculptures, installations, videos, multimedia works, and digital art) by 34 contemporary, pioneer Greek artists or artists of Greek origin as well as emerging artists working with the use of latest technologies. Besides, Athens Digital Arts Festival (ADAF) is the invited Festival in the exhibition, with more than 20 artists exhibiting their works on screens in the Entrance Hall of the Greek Pavilion.

The Greek exhibition is presented under the Aegis of the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Secretariat General for Public Diplomacy and Greeks Abroad, the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports, the Hellenic Ministry of Tourism, the Greek National Tourism Organization and the Municipality of Athens.

The opening of the exhibition was addressed through a video speech by Prof. John Chrysoulakis,Secretary General for Greeks Abroad and Public Diplomacy under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Hellenic Republic. Ambassador of Greece to China, Mr. Georgios Iliopoulos attended and addressed the opening of the exhibition in Hainan island.

Exhibition concept
Since antiquity, Greece is acclaimed as an open society and culture, where ideas flourish and flow. Dialogue has been the basis for communication with others as well as the cornerstone of all achievements of Greek culture including philosophy, science, art, theater and democracy. Few countries are comparable to Greece in terms of culture-sharing through dialogue and cultural interaction. As stated by the Curator, Ms K. Koskina, “the theme of the Greek Pavilion exhibition, Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis. In the Belt of Change arises from the common belief that the ancient Greek and Chinese civilizations, which have defined and shaped cultures beyond their borders, shared many common elements in their quest of understanding the World. For both cultures, the World was not limited to the physical earth or the natural world but encompassed the much wider, complicated, incomprehensible but harmonious structure of the World or Universe. The Greek exhibition is structured on the   discursive method, where the flow of time and change is expressed in three stages of development, “Thesis- Antithesis – Synthesis” rooted in Ancient Greek philosophy, particularly the Socratic obstetric method. Besides, it conveys to the visitors the ancient Greek idea of endless movement which drives humanity to engage with change, an idea close to the notion of Yin and Yang in Chinese philosophy and cosmology. This triadic approach of “Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis” represents our perspective in creating this Exhibition and is aligned with the architecture of the building, divided in halls. The Exhibition is designed as an immersive experience for the public to imagine histories and futures, as well as to highlight the concepts of interaction, dialogue and fluidity.”

Excerpts of the introductory text by the Curator of the Guest Country of Honor, Katerina Koskina 
Tides of centuries gone, tides of centuries to come — and amidst the ever-shifting sands of time, we find ourselves twenty years into the 21st century. We are living in a historical moment of global change due, in part, to the unprecedented developments in technology leading us forward to a largely predicted common future. Simultaneously, however, we have the persistent need to delve into the tides of the past, to our principles, traditions, roots, making connections with our cultural heritage. This crossroads of the tides of past and future worlds affects and is affected by art across the globe navigating inspiration in this flow of change.

Dedicated to immerse ourselves in the flow of these tides — to contemplate and envision — we are proud that our proposal was selected to become a part of The Tides of the Century-2020 Ocean Flower Island International Art Exhibition and Greece is honored in its role as Guest Country.
The starting point of our Exhibition Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis. In the Belt of Change is the common belief that the ancient Greek and Chinese civilizations, which have defined and shaped cultures beyond their borders, shared many common elements toward understanding the world. For both cultures, the world was not limited to the physical earth but encompassed the much wider, complicated, incomprehensible but harmonious structure of the universe. The foundations of these cultures have transcended time and have continued to influence culture throughout the centuries. What similarities can be drawn today between these two countries?

In the global arena, we observe a need to decode and decipher the world around us toward understanding; an urge which fluctuates between the Universe (Cosmos) and humankind. There is also a personal need to find visual and tangible languages to interpret and understand our own world.

This Exhibition is structured on the method of discourse, where the flow of time and change is expressed in three stages of development and consciousness—Thesis- Antithesis – Synthesis, rooted in Ancient Greek philosophy, particularly the Socratic obstetric method. This triadic approach of Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis represents our perspective in creating this Exhibition and is aligned with the architecture of the building, divided in halls. The Exhibition is designed as an immersive experience for the public to imagine histories and futures, as well as to highlight the concepts of interaction, dialogue and fluidity.

In the Entrance Hall (Space A), leading to the three main exhibition areas, visitors have the opportunity to get to know Greece and its cultural and touristic development, as well as showcase the work of a new generation of Greek artists exploring the digital world and its latest applications. Covid-19 changed our plans to highlight the immersive technologies employed by the artists of the Athens Digital Art Festival (ADAF), and its display is limited to a number of films.

Aimilia Papaphilippou’s work ‘Chess Continuum’ serves as an introduction to the concept and the Exhibition. Space B is titled Artistic Endeavors: Science and the Cosmos. In this space, visitors can explore the interaction of artists with the cosmos. How artists translate natural forces, kinetics, sound and computer technology.

Moving from the world of science and the universe to the world of spirituality, Space C hosts Spiritual Quests: Transcending the Everyday, a more esoteric journey of escaping the everyday experience to explore the spiritual quest of the man’s interaction with the urban and environmental surroundings.

In the last hall (Space D), Mythologies of the past, Mythologies of the future, we see the artists’ engagement with technology, machines, robotics, the urban and post-humanist world. Technologies focus on Nature, and the body as a work of art mediated by various media. Artists delve into the present and the past, in a search to find their identity in their history while translating and interpreting the past into the present.

The works of this Exhibition are evidence that tradition and science are not conflicting worlds; rather, art has the capacity to bring subjects to life regardless of the medium used for its creation.

The Exhibition Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis. In the Belt of Change was affected by COVID 19 and was installed remotely. Through advanced technology and the dedication of teams in both countries, we were not only able to make it possible, but worked in unity to overcome challenges, the odds and to see the broad potential for future collaborations. With great respect and appreciation to the Chinese culture stakeholders for devoting a world-class venue and International Art Event for sharing the art and culture of Greece with a broad public, we would like to thank all and each one separately for having worked together on this challenging project.

Organizers: Chinese International Exhibition Agency (CIEA) and the Ocean Flower Island Museum
Co-Organizers: Evergrande Fairyland Group & China Arts and Entertainment Group Ltd.
Exhibition Concept / Curation: Katerina Koskina
Production & Coordination: Kostas Konstantinidis – PostScriptum
Research – Museological Study – Texts: ΑΜΚΕ POLITES
Architectural Design – Lighting: Maria Maneta
Invited Festival: Athens Digital Arts Festival (ADAF)

ARTISTS

Dimitris Alithinos, ANGELIDAKIS Andreas Angelidakis, Stephen Antonakos, C O S T I S, Pantelis Chandris, CHRYSSA, Manolis Daskalakis – Lemos, George Drivas, Stelios Faitakis, Aspassio Haronitaki, Yioula Hatjigeorgiou, Yiannis, Kranidiotis, Ioannis Michalou(di)s, Petros Moris, Nikos Navridis, Nikos Papadopoulos, Eva Papamargariti, Aemilia Papaphilippou, Nafsika Pastra, Aristotle Roufanis, Lucas Samaras, Manthos Santorineos, Stelarc, Marianna Strapatsaki, TAKIS, THEODOULOS. Dimitris Tragkas, Theo Triantafyllidis, Costas Tsoclis, Costas Varotsos, Babis Venetopoulos, Lydia Venieri, Pantelis Xagoraris, George Zongolopoulos

 

 

VIDEOS

SPONSORS

Under the Aegis of:  Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Secretariat General for Public Diplomacy and Greeks Abroad, Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports, Hellenic Ministry of Tourism, Greek National Tourism Organization and the Municipality of Athens
The Guest of Honor Country Exhibition is placed under the “Greece-China Year of Culture & Tourism 2021”
With the support of: National Museum of Contemporary Art (EMST), Onassis Foundation, PACE Gallery New York, KΕΤΕ Foundation, George Zongolopoulos Foundation, Stephen Antonakos Studio, New York