45th Venice Biennale | Cyprus in Venice
45th Venice Biennale
George Sfikas
Eleni Nikita

Works: White Space, Topos, Aquatic Verticality, Homage to Niki, Energy 8, Tetraclinon-Cypress, Labarum of the Void

George Sfikas introduced to the Cyprus pavilion a series of minimal drawings, photographs and installations, which investigated notions like ‘matter’, ‘energy’, ‘light’, and ‘time’ or ‘timelessness’ in a positivistic, mathematical fashion. This work, drawing on principles of conceptual art and using methods and styles echoing the practices of Sol Le Witt and Seth Siegelaub in the late 1960s, posed questions around human existence and the need to transcend the rigidity of systems on which the world operates. On a more intimate level, it also condensed memories from the artist’s childhood in Cyprus. The overall installation was designed by visual artist Niki Liodaki; so was the bilingual (English-French) catalogue, which had been conceived as an integral part of the project and was one of the most innovative publications of the Cyprus pavilion. Sfikas, now based on the island of Syros, Greece, has reconstructed for this show part of the Venice installation, incorporating all the fundamental elements of the work and repaving his minimalistic path into a dense world of concepts.

George Sfikas

George Sfikas (c.1943, Nicosia) lived and worked in England and Greece. He studied painting and sculpture in London at the Camberwell School of Art, Martin’s School of Art and the Institute of Education of the University of London. He presented his work in Cyprus, London, Paris Biennale and New Delhi Triennale. Sfikas represented Cyprus at the 45th Venice Biennale of Art.

  • Eleni Nikita

    Born in Nicosia. She studied Social Sciences at the University of Geneva. She is a Ph.D. of the University of Athens in the history of Art. She worked at the Center for Social Research (1971-1977) and in the Cultural Services of the Ministry of Education and Culture (1977-2009), which she served as director from 2003 to 2009. She was for many years the representative of the Ministry of Education and Culture in the Committee on Culture the Council of Europe and various committees of the European Union. He was also Secretary General of the Cyprus National Committee of UNESCO from 2001 to 2009. He is the author of many studies, works of art criticisms and books on modern art. Her book “Christoforos Savvas, the beginning of a new era in Cypriot art”, was honored with the 2009 State Prize of Literature in the essay-research class. He was honored by the French government with the Order of the Knight of the Order of the Academic Phoenix and by the Austrian government with the Honorable Cross for Arts and Sciences. She is a member of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) and the Society of Historic Art of Greece. Since 2012 she has been working with the Leventis Art Gallery as a curator of the Cypriot collection of the LA Leventis Foundation.