Greece in USA is a non-profit organization with a global reach that promotes knowledge of contemporary and ancient Greek Culture while fostering international cultural cooperation, experimentation and social engagement. The organization’s extensive programming includes commissioned artists’ and curators’ projects, residencies, educational and ecological initiatives and the commitment to cultivating a sensible culture of innovation and thought leadership.
We are dedicated to offering innovative and unique programs in education and the arts, all exploring the evolving diversity and richness of Greek and Cypriot cultures. The non-profit organization seeks to generate new thinking about the arts and promote cross-cultural dialogue through partnerships and new platforms of creation.
The organization promotes international exchange of practice and knowledge in the arts – visual and sound art, dance, architecture, theatre – research on the methods used in curatorial and performing practices and investigation of points of intersection between the arts, science and the public sphere by means of interventions, collective actions, educational programs and publications.
Greece in USA aims to collaborate and build long-lasting partnerships with leading institutions and individuals who actively engage with Greece and its culture and to convey a comprehensive and distinctive representation of Greece and Cyprus by producing cultural and educational programs that encourage intercultural dialogue and enable cultural involvement.
OUR PRINCIPAL GOALS ARE:
> To shape and envision the image of contemporary Greece in the United States beyond existing stereotypes
> To recalibrate the assumed center of Greek national narratives to include those who have often been denied historical recognition.
> To transform the way Greek histories are told and produce projects that reflect the vast, rich complexity of Greek culture.
> To support Greek inspired cultural practices by welcoming and nurturing new ideas and influential perspectives
> To commission, produce and present contemporary Greek and Cypriot culture that grapple with many of the pressing social and political issues of our time
> To foster Greek scholarship and cultural research within the American educational system
> To develop a transatlantic network for the exchange of culture and ideas
> To strengthen the development of structures in cultural policy & leadership and foster worldwide mobility.
Greece in USA is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization registered in the State of New York, tax-exempt ID no. 85-0828531. Contributions to Greece in USA are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.
Greece in USA‘s launch is under the auspices of the Greek Ministry of Culture.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Antonios (Tony) Backos has over 23 years of experience advising on and completing transformative corporate transactions and fundraisings for non-profit organizations, public companies and startups in the United States and Europe. Backos has also served executive roles in public and private companies, law firms and advises stakeholders active in cultural affairs, including artistic directors and charitable institutions focused on theatre and other arts. Currently, he is a mentor to Endeavor Greece and an advisor at The Port, a marketing consulting and business advisory firm in Greece—two institutions which work with Greek businesses to build enterprises that reach the United States and global audiences. Backos is also COO and co-founder of Bluewater Acquisition Corp., a TSX Venture-listed capital pool company. He served on the board of the Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce in New York, was a member of the founding Board of the North American Marine Environment Protection Association, and also served as a lecturer at the ECSP Business School. He holds a BA and BS from the University of Pennsylvania and the Wharton School, a Masters degree from the LSE and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.
Nicholas Karytinos is the founder of Tacet Creations in New York City. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture and Masters of Architecture in Urban Design from Cornell University and has taught at Cornell University, Roger Williams University and has been a juror at Columbia University, Harvard, RISD, among other universities. Karytinos’ architectural installations have been showcased at prominent cultural venues such as the Museum of Science and Technology Leonardo Da Vinci, in Milan, under the patronage of the Greek Consulate-General in Milan and ’T’-Space NY, a non-profit organization founded by Steven Holl and operated by the Steven Myron Holl Foundation that has presented artists Pat Steir, Martin Puryear, Richard Artschwager, Ai Weiwei and Carolee Schneemann. Karytinos has collaborated with the architectural practice Forward Slash ( / ) ARCHITEKTUR who was the winner of the competition to design the Performa 15 Hub for Performa Biennial in New York, the leading arts organization dedicated to exploring the critical role of live performance. Karytinos researches perceptual leaps through architecture incorporating the ecological and visual and his designs have been selected as the official participation of Greece in the 21st Triennale in Milan, Italy, responding to the theme “21st Century. Design After Design” and “Sustainability”.
ADVISORY COUNCIL FORERUNNERS
Nektarios Antoniou is the Director of Culture at the National Cathedral of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. President of The Treasury NYC, curating and producing the annual “Icons of Sounds” Concerts Series at the Historic Cathedral of the Holy Trinity and Executive Director for the Axion Estin Foundation best known for presenting the Byzantine Pop-Ups at the Metropolitan Museum of New York. As the Founding & Artistic Director of Schola Cantorum, he has presented and recorded several programs, including the Grammy Nominated “A Story of the City: Constantinople-Istanbul” for Dunyainc, the Boston based musicians collective-of which he is a founding member and fellow ensemble conductor. For a decade he served under the auspices of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture & Education, teaching, researching and curating programs for the Conservatory of Northern Greece, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, the Mount Athos Center and the Dimitri Mitropoulos Conservatoire. At Yale University he served as the Lead Editor for Music for the Yale Palimpsest magazine, curated the music installations for the Yale Art Gallery’s alternative audio guide, introduced and procured the summer greek art studio at the YALE ISM. He is the recipient of two consecutive ‘Yale Institute of Sacred Music Director’s Prizes’ awarded by Margot Fassler, the Yale ISM Director and President Emeritus of the Medieval Academy of America. He was hired by the BSO President and Harvard Professor Dr. Nicholas Zervas to reconstruct, edit and translate, the earliest known manuscript of the legendary NYS Maestro Dimitri Mitropoulos’ Autograph Notes on the History of Music Morphology which was published by Livanis in 2011. Among his most celebrated contributions is his voicing the installations as principal cantor and director of his Schola Cantorum for the celebrated UCLA/USC Soundscapes of Byzantine Thessaloniki project “Of Bodies and Spirits”. Nektarios is a member of the celebrated Beyond Music organization headed by Tina Turner. Production credits include music for award winning documentaries and films.
Tressa Berman, Ph.D. is an anthropologist and curator that specializes in art and heritage. Author of two books, her contributions to international art writing include for Australian and New Zealand Journal of Art, Art Papers and New Art Examiner (USA), Arte Al Limite (Spain), Oi (Vietnam), and an occasional column for Cultural Weekly, Los Angeles. She has held teaching and research positions at Arizona State University, California College of the Arts, San Francisco Art Institute, University of Technology, Sydney, the California Academy of Sciences, and as a guest lecturer for a range of museums and cultural centers. As an arts organizer, she was Founding Director of BorderZone Arts (San Francisco) and served as Arts Conference Director for the International Conference on the Arts in Society, working with major arts festivals, including Documenta, the Venice Bienale and the Edinburgh Festivals. As an arts and culture consultant, she has contributed to UNESCO heritage documents, and as special advisor and curator on Indigenous and global art programs and cultural exchanges. Currently, she works as a consultant and creative coach through her Institute of Inter-Cultural Practice. She brings mindful leadership values and practices to her collaborations, and is currently at work on a collection of poems, essays and photographs documenting her work as a visual ethnographer.
Rachel Katwan is an arts administrator living in Brooklyn, New York (ancestral lands of the Canarsee tribe of the Lenni Lenape). She currently serves as the General Manager for Pomegranate Arts, a Creative Producer dedicated to the realization of international performing arts projects. Rachel previously served in various roles at the Brooklyn Academy of Music from 2004-2016 and was a key team member on the internal producing team for some of the Academy’s most ambitious programming initiatives including the citywide Si Cuba Festival, Muslim Voices: Art & Ideas, The Bridge Project international tours, three seasons of RadioLoveFest, and the annual DanceAfrica festival.
Kliën’s choreographies have been performed and situated in many countries across the world. Commissions include New Museum (NY), Ballett Frankfurt, Martha Graham Dance Company, ZKM (Karlsruhe), Tanzquartier Wien and Volksoper Wien; exhibitions include IMMA (Irish Museum of Modern Art), Benaki Museum (Athens), and Hayward Gallery (London). During his work at Ballett Frankfurt, Kliën also acted as artistic consultant to William Forsythe. He received a PhD from the Edinburgh College of Art in 2009 and, as a committed teacher, has been lecturing about his findings at numerous distinguished academic and non-academic institutions. He has been co-founder and Artistic Director of the London based arts group Barriedale Operahouse (1994—2000) and Artistic Director/CEO of the visionary Daghdha Dance Company (2003—2011). From 2012-2017 he worked as an independent artist in Greece. In 2017 he was appointed Professor at Duke University and is now living in North Carolina with his family, where he leads the Laboratory for Social Choreography at the Kenan Institute of Ethics.
Andreas Takis, Director of The Metropolitan Organisation of Museums of Visual Arts of Thessaloniki – MOMus and assistant professor of Philosophy and Methodology of Law at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.
Prior to joining Greece in USA, Eva has worked for ATOPOS cvc, a nonprofit cultural organization in Athens. During her period of employment, she participated/contributed in the organizing of various art performances. In her most recent position, she was employed by Minas Designs in the context of a photography exhibition ‘Clarity of Shapes’ at the Benaki Museum. With a BA in International and European Studies, and an MSc in Culture and Conflict in a Global Europe, from the university of London School of Economics and Political Science, Eva’s will is to explore the broadness of arts environments and the interconnectedness of culture between the political and public realms.
Odette Kouzou (1994) is a curator and researcher based in Athens, Greece. She holds a Masters’s Degree in Performance Studies from Tisch School of the Arts / NYU (2019) in the United States and a BA Degree in Art History and Theory Department from Athens School of Fine Arts (2017). Her curatorial research and practice focus on contemporary and performance art cases, operating through the lens of various feminisms and critical studies. In 2020 she was nomitated as an emerging curator for the NEON Curatorial Exchange 2020, an initiative organised by the Whitechapel Gallery in London and supported by NEON Organisation in Athens. She has worked and collaborate with both institutional and independent organizations such as Snehta Residency, Ύλη [matter]HYLE, Art Athina 2019 and Documenta 14.