Onassis Presents ENTER: A Series of Artworks Created at Home
We stay home. But we are staying connected. The ONASSIS FOUNDATION announces the commission of new works by artists in quarantine. We believe that CULTURE can be the medicine in this time of crisis. Many of the artists are ready to press ENTER on their computers and together ENTER the future, presenting the works they have created in a short period of time, or in less than 120 hours.
Onassis STEGI and Onassis USA have commissioned artists across the globe to prepare new work. Through this initiative we want to capture and understand the present, learn from it, narrate and exorcise it; at the same time, we are creating a digital time capsule, which will preserve the memory of this period for future generations. During the pandemic, our houses, apartments, gardens, roof-terraces and balconies have become the new site-specific stages. Children, husbands and wives, grandparents, roommates, even pets, become characters, household goods become props, and the artist’s laptop is turned into a creative missile.
From New York to ATHENS, from Tokyo to Berlin, from the Vardousia Mountain to Beirut, from Cephalonia’s Karantinata to London, the following artists press ENTER in the next days and welcome us into their homes: 600 HIGHWAYMEN, Maria Antelman, Kimberly Bartosik, Annie Dorsen, Radiohole, Emily Johnson, Kathryn Hamilton (Sister Sylvester), Risa Puno and Stefanos Tsivopoulos. Elias Adam, Ziad Antar, Simos Kakalas, Evi Kalogeropoulou, Kareem Kalokoh – ATH Kids, RootlessRoot, Vasilis Kekatos, Lena Kitsopoulou, Maria Papadimitriou, Kostis Stafylakis & Theo Triantafyllidis & Alexis Fidetzis, Efthymis Filippou, Andonis Foniadakis, and Daniel Wetzel.
Each one, but ultimately all together, will create a series of works that beam from their living room over to ours, bringing the message that art cancels out distance.
The ΕΝΤΕR project is not another quarantine diary, but a series of original works created in the conditions of the “here and now” in order to surpass it and bring us together through the world of onassis.org/enter and the Onassis Foundation digital Youtube Channel.
Art is a refuge created to be shared by all, artists and audiences. No one can stop it. We will always find a “stage” to host us and enchant us: with new content and continuous flow, with new commissions, new digital actions and many surprises.
From this week, you can press ENTER without any cost or time limit, to see that though isolated, we are not alone.
“We needed something to breathe differently. To see and live through an experience proving that the mind does not stop giving birth to ideas when you enclose it, out of necessity, in the four walls of a house; that imagination does not stop, when we are surrounded by fear of what is happening, by the agony of what may come to pass. We turned towards the PEOPLE who transport us to other worlds; to those who, with their art, enrich our lives. The artists. This group of PEOPLE who tend to our soul and move our thought. How does a dancer dance in his kitchen? How many images capture the eyes of a director, when he spends most of his time on his couch? Is the entire house a scene? We enter in order to see. As guests. You too. ENTER.”
“The space created, filled and tragically sometimes taken away by COVID, has challenged how we experience and make new art. This strange combination of isolation and constant reaching out; of new ways of listening and talking, and of touching and being touched—have inspired us to create a new commissioning program called ENTER which we hope will be in part a kind of artistic time capsule, refracting the frustration, grief, comedy, and fear of this moment of pandemic. We hope this is just round one of many micro-commissions—all native to quarantine, digital delivery, and social distance. With these works we champion and support the artists who we believe will articulate our future, and enable them to stride forward in new forms. These artists (and their families, pets and homes!) represent a diverse array of ideas, genres, disciplines and histories—both familiar and new to the ONASSIS FOUNDATION. Each has been made under severe time constraints with only the materials they had at hand. That is to say, we love their ambition and blemishes equally.”
– Vallejo Gantner, Artistic and Executive Director of Onassis USA