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About the artist

Costas Varotsos was born in 1955 in Athens. He studied painting at the Academia di Belle Arti in Rome (1973-76) and architecture in Pescara, at the Arte Scuola di Architettura of the University of Pescara (1976-81), where he began his career with exhibitions and performances. His first solo exhibition was organised in Athens (Desmos gallery, 1982), shortly after his return to Greece and he also participated in Europalia '82 festival in Belgium. His work was still between painting and sculpture, but he had already demonstrated an interest in transparent materials and in the relationship between the work of art and its environment. In 1983, he built a large sculpture of glass plates in Nicosia, Cyprus, entitled Poet, which would be placed at the historic relic and cultural centre of Famagusta Gate. From this experience, the famous Runner of Athens will evolve; an 8-metre-high sculpture of glass and metal, which was placed initially at Omonia Square (1988) and was afterwards moved to the square of the Megali tou Genous Scholi (1994). In 1987, he participated in the Biennale of Sao Paulo, and he participated twice in the Venice Biennale: in 1993 representing Italy and in 1999 representing Greece among other Greek artists. That same year he was elected Professor of Architecture at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. Many of his projects have received awards. He was honoured for his overall artistic contribution in Italy with the title of Cavaliere della Repubblica Italiana (2004) and the award Segno d'Oro (2007). A monograph on his work was published in 2009.

About the exhibition

This exhibition endeavours to document Costas Varotsos’ work on an international level. The “Sculptural Palimpsests” exhibition presents archival material: photographs, drawings of applied interventions (Famagusta Gate, the archaeological site of Cuma in Naples, the Castle of Roccascalegna in Mortiza, Delphi, Geraki in Laconia) and three- dimensional proposals / studies (Augusto Imperatore square, Meteora, Epidaurus).

A gigantic cone of glass and metal is the core work / intervention by Costas Varotsos at the Greek theatre of ancient Cuma, the first Greek colony in the West. This sculpture connects the two parts of this exhibition in their complementary rationale.