International aura at Hydra exhibition

Summer exhibitions outside Athens fall into two categories: retrospectives, principally of well-known artists, or group endeavors based on a popular theme. But there’s nothing stale about the tribute that artist and curator Dimitris Antonitsis has organized on Hydra for the past nine years. Fresh, with an international aura, it functions along the lines of an artistic workshop, as some of the participants stay on for a while and produce new work. There is Dimitris Andreadis, for instance, whom we first got to know from an exhibition featuring the work of the best students at the Athens School of Fine Arts. The young artist paints huge faces on large electrical appliance boxes. This year the Hydra exhibition is called «Whatever’s Whatever,» after a phrase that appears in a work by the American artist Raymond Pettibon. The curator has invited 11 artists to comment on the phrase. The venue is an added attraction. The old junior high school of Hydra now hosts works by Greek and foreign artists. Drawings, installations and photographs liven up the rooms. All the artists Antonitsis has invited this year have developed their own distinct idioms. Michael Bevilacqua’s works, under the title «Anger is an Energy,» convey something of the atmosphere of New York after the attacks on the Twin Towers. Derraindrop is a group whose members produce art works collectively; for the Hydra exhibition they have collaborated with Eddie Martinez. Curator and clothing expert Vassilis Zidianakis is presenting a work that follows on from one he exhibited recently at the Issey Miyake Foundation in Tokyo. Yiannis Varelas is exhibiting some of the drawings he showed at the Breeder gallery. Antonitsis’s photos printed on reflective film share a room with the American artist Marilyn Minter’s photographs of Pamela Anderson and alluring mouths. Ry Fyan, Chris Johanson, Kalup Linzy and Mika Rottenberg also have interesting work on display. The exhibition runs to September 3.