GREEK ARTISTS IN NEW YORK
Cris Gianakos was born
in New York in 1934 and studied at the School of Visual Arts in New York where
he is a professor and has taught for the past 35 years. For the majority of
his career, Gianakos's interest lay in graphic arts and typographic design.
He is well known for his 'ramps,' the large wooden sculptural constructions
which he usually places in natural surroundings. In 2004, he completed a large
installation in the city of Athens for the 2004 Olympics.
The influence of Russian
constructivism, minimalism and geometric abstraction can be seen in his work,
while many references are made to ancient Greece and other civilizations. References
to antiquity include concepts of life after death, and of the soul's journey
after it leaves the body. The 'ramp' is perhaps a reference to the idea of ascending
to the heavens and also of descending to the bowels of the earth.
Collections include the Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Mass; the Brooklyn Museum of Art; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; and The Museum of Modern Art, New York.