When the minimal meets the maximal

What happens when modern designs meet the collection of a thrift shop?

Nikomachi Karakostanoglou-Boutaris provides the answer through her art exhibition inside the thrift shop Martinos, where she acts both as artist and curator. The minimal, aerial esthetic of her designs is showcased by the maximalist objects of the thrift shop, carefully selected and placed by the artist herself.

Portraits, engravings, furniture, carpets, statuettes -even fabrics and weavings in glass casings, much like various other highly eclectic decorative items from the 19th century until today, both showcase and harmoniously unite with the transparent, aerial monochromatic and contemporary forms of her individual artworks. Her designs, highly influenced by Chino-Japanese engravings, focus on the flow of water and color through the motion of the brush on paper and create transparent volumes and landscapes stating her sculpting outlook and the individuality of her preferred materials. Her works can be even read as a sort of dialogue between extreme opposites such as energy-matter, light-darkness, moment-eternity, lack-fullness, subjective-collective view.

photography by George Vdokakis
photo by Angelo Tziara

In the foreground, some thrift shop objects referring to the Hellenistic sublime revival of the 19th century, like a series of engravings with the Acropolis crag as the main topic, alongside which she juxtaposes her own designs influenced by the Attic light during sunset. At the same time, the female presence is also prevalent through realistic portraits and statuettes of that era, delicate pieces of furniture, vases and ceramics that acquire a new dimension next to her own abstract silver female bodies; thus she venerates the sanctity of the female form in both Asian and Greek mythology, the sexual desire and also its suppression by patriarchy, as is the case in her series of designs exhibited in the ottoman oda of the thrift shop.

An all-inclusive approach unifying the old and the new with the contemporary, the minimal with the maximal but also the Greek with the Asian tradition until today.

photography by George Vdokakis
photography by George Vdokakis
photography by George Vdokakis
photography by George Vdokakis

Nikomachi was born and raised in Athens. She began her studies at the Athens University of Economics and went on to study Public Art at Chelsea School of Art and Sculpture at Wimbledon School of Art.

During her studies she discovers “Spatial Sculpture”, a design notion that will follow her throughout her artistic course, while in 1998 she founds the Sculpting Space studio. In 2011 she leaves for Shanghai where she busies herself mainly with branding and restaurant design. At the same time she studies Chinese calligraphy and methods of depicting transparent forms. Returning to Greece, she starts working strictly on her visual artworks, experimenting with the larger scale but also with the new materials that she has amassed from her travels to Asia.

Konstantina Melachrinou
Art Historian
photography by George Vdokakis
Photo by Angelo Tziara
photography by George Vdokakis
photography by George Vdokakis