ATHENS – ARCAthens announced via email that inaugural Curatorial Fellow of their Athens Residency, Larry Ossei-Mensah, co-curates the 7th Athens Biennale ECLIPSE with Omsk Social Club, under the artistic direction of Poka-Yio. The exhibition opens September 24 and features artists based in North and South America, the Caribbean, Africa, and Europe, many of whom will be exhibiting in Greece for the first time.
During his residency with ARCAthens, Larry Ossei-Mensah was introduced to the Athenian community in depth. ARCAthens seminars at the Athens School of Fine Arts (ASFA), hosted with Poka-Yio’s Lab, gave Larry and Poka the opportunity to share ideas and begin a creative collaboration.
Ossei-Mensah said of his Athens residency, “ARCAthens has truly been a game changer for me personally and professionally. I view this experience as another pivot point that has reshaped how I think about art, my curatorial practice and my world view. I came to Athens via this residency with the intention of learning more about the city and its art community, but I ended up leaving with more. I've developed a new network of friends and colleagues within the Athenian art ecosystem whom I look forward to continuing a deep and expansive dialogue with. I leave this residency with a renewed focus and urgency that will be a key catalyst that will drive the next chapter of my curatorial practice. I'm thankful to the ARCAthens team and Board, for putting together such a robust and thoughtful program for myself and Cullen [Washington, J., Visual Art Fellow]. I have been forever changed!”
ARCAthens Visual Art Fellow (Athens Residency Fall 2019) Tomashi Jackson will also be participating in the 7th Athens Biennale with three videos. According to the 7th Athens Biennale website, “inspired by her Los Angeles upbringing and a recent Athens residency with ARCAthens, Jackson filmed original music videos to classic throwback R&B songs.”
“During a recent residency in Athens, Jackson became interested in Greece as the birthplace of democracy, tracing how the right to vote has expanded slowly and often painfully across time and geography,” the Los Angeles Times reported.
“In a way, our residencies are ‘intercultural seed planters,’ where the fertile and supportive environment ARCAthens provides might encourage dialogue, growth, and development,” ARCAthens Executive Director Aristides Logothetis said. “In this model, IMPACT is almost impossible to predict — one cannot know when the seed planted might sprout — so we are thrilled to witness the swift blossoming of the creative seed planted through our inaugural residency in Larry’s co-curation of the 7th Athens Biennale!”
“We wish Larry, his co-curators Omsk Social Club, the artists, and the entire Athens Biennale team an inspired exhibition,” Logothetis concluded.
More information about the 7th Athens Biennale ECLIPSE is available online: https://athensbiennale.org/en/ab7-eclipse/.