photo by Joseph Coscia, Jr.


Onassis Foundation USA

An affiliate of the parent Foundation in Greece, the Onassis Foundation USA is dedicated to Greek culture from antiquity to the present. By cooperating with educational and cultural institutions in Greece and throughout the Americas, the Onassis Foundation USA promotes cultural relations. The mission is realized through two major initiatives, one cultural for the general public through its Onassis Cultural Center New York, and the other educational for scholars and students in partnership with educational institutions through the Onassis Humanities Impact Program.


Through a rich program of exhibitions and events, the creative space in midtown Manhattan presents cultural programming for audiences of all ages to engage with art and ideas. Designed to be thought-provoking and entertaining, programs encourage audience interaction with celebrated artists and influential figures from the visual and performing arts, and the humanities.

Programs and exhibitions—from scholarly to those designed for families—are presented free of charge to make the experience accessible to all.

Head Of Agrippina The Elder 2714

Head of Agrippina the Elder, Marble, 1st century AD, Archaeological Museum of Dion, M 2714 

Exhibitions and Visual Art

In collaboration with museums, curators, and scholars from around the world, the Onassis Cultural Center New York produces critically acclaimed art exhibitions, often featuring artworks and objects never before shown in the United States. Exhibitions range from Ancient Greek Art to Byzantine Art to Modern and Contemporary Art.

With a new emphasis on the present, the Onassis Cultural Center New York presents the work of established, emerging, and newly discovered artists from Greece and around the world. Launched in 2015, The Art Wall offers a prominent place to display specially commissioned works by contemporary artists in the Olympic Tower public atrium. 

Onassis Festival NY

Launched in 2015, the annual festival of arts and ideas—Onassis Festival NY explores the relevance of the classical tradition to the present day through innovative and adventurous programs across disciplines and for all ages.


An extensive program of public events—conversations, concerts, lectures, readings, symposia, theatrical performances, and films—introduces important new and established international talent and creates opportunities for collaboration between artists, writers, and scholars from Greece, the United States, and around the world. All events are free and open to the public.

Off Center Journal

The online journal, Off Center, dives deep into one idea generated from themes of the Onassis Cultural Center New York's current events and exhibitions. Links to articles, videos, and multimedia anchor ideas in a broader context.


The Onassis Cultural Center New York partners with prominent cultural institutions in New York City such as BAM (Brooklyn Academy of Music), Carnegie Hall, the New York Public Library, the New York City Greek Film Festival, the European Panorama Film Festival, and the Axion Esti Foundation, among others, and continues to expand its collaborations and partnerships throughout the New York metropolitan area.

Education Program

The central mission of the Onassis Foundation USA is the promotion of Greek culture through cultural and educational initiatives. The Onassis Humanities Impact Program (HIP) is designed to fulfill this mission by partnering with and supporting educational institutions to facilitate scholarly engagement with the Hellenic tradition, to educate students and the general public, and to reach new, diverse, and unexpected audiences.  

HIP, started in 2018, is forming partnerships in the following areas:

  • Education at the intersection of the Humanities and STEM professional disciplines
  • Onassis Visiting Professors, to teach quarter/semester-long courses for credit
  • Community College Education and Training
  • Diversity in Classical Studies
  • Prison Education in the Humanities
  • Digital Humanities

Through the Onassis Series in Hellenic Culture, Oxford University Press publishes books based on original scholarly research presented within the University Seminars Program. Each book is authored by an Onassis Visiting Scholar.

Our Parent Organization—The Onassis Foundation

The Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation was established in 1975 in accordance with Aristotle Onassis’s will, which directed that one-half of his fortune be dedicated to the public welfare in memory of his son, Alexander Onassis (1948-1973). All activities of the Foundation are funded exclusively by an institutionally independent business Foundation named Alexander S. Onassis Foundation, based in Vaduz, Liechtenstein.  

Onassis Cultural Center Athens

There is also a renowned, architecturally impressive Onassis Cultural Center in Athens. This cultural landmark offers events across the whole spectrum of the arts, from theater, dance, music, film, and visual arts, to the written word. The Center emphasizes contemporary cultural expression, supporting Greek artists, cultivating international collaborations, and educating children and people of all ages through lifelong learning.