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Stephen Antonakos at French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) curated by Greek curator Lola Koutoudi

Stephen Antonakos

On view February 24–April 2, 2022
FIAF Gallery

“Essentially a classicist in the Constructivist tradition, Antonakos has revealed the poetry of neon.”
— Irving Sandler, Art Historian, NY, 2009

Stephen Antonakos (1926–2013) called his work “real things in real spaces in the here and now.” There are no representations, allusions, symbols. Throughout his work, the forms, colors, and compositions are clear — but their experience in time and space is open and various. The crucial placements of his incomplete geometries allow the forms to be completed in the viewer’s imagination — to be sensed kinetically as well as visually. He considered that the viewer’s experience was what completed a work of art.

FORM COLOR SPACE is an ideal presentation of two important, related directions in Antonakos’s work from the mid-1970s: a Neon Wall and three strong drawings.

View the exhibition and enjoy a glass of wine at the opening reception on Thursday, February 24, from 6–8pm. At 7pm, art writer and editor David Ebony and Naomi S. Antonakos, Director of Stephen Antonakos Studio LLC, will discuss the exhibition in a conversation with Dr. Sozita Goudouna.

Exhibition curated by Lola Siena Koutoudi.

Stephen Antonakos was born in the small Greek village of Agios Nikolaos in 1926 and moved with his family to New York in 1930. In the late 1940s, after returning from the US Army, he established his first studio in Manhattan’s fur district. From the early 1960s until his death in 2013, he worked and lived in studios in SoHo. His work with neon since 1960 has lent the medium new perceptual and formal meanings in direct 3-D indoor installations; painted Canvases; Walls, back-lit Panels with painted or gold surfaces; Rooms; Chapels; and the architecturally scaled Public Works in the USA, Europe, and Japan. Other important practices include the conceptual packages; collages; Travel Collages; Artist’s Books; the silver and white Reliefs; prints; and, since 2011, several series of framed and 3-D Gold Works.

Since 1958, Antonakos’s work has been seen in hundreds of solo and group shows in New York, around the USA, Europe, and Japan. For almost every exhibition, he created new work. He received the Prize for Art from the American Academy of Arts and Letters (2009) and Lifetime Achievement Awards from the Neuberger Museum, Purchase, NY (2000), the National Academy Museum (2011) and the Greek America Foundation (2011).

Lola Siena Koutoudi

Lola Siena Koutoudi is the curator of this exhibition. Born and raised in Athens, Lola studied Art History at NYU. While living in NY she fine-tuned her art knowledge and experience. She has overseen and worked closely with various art collectors including George Terasaki, the legendary collector of objects from the indigenous cultures of North America. Among her recent projects is a global exchange program between artists and Greece.


David Ebony is currently a Contributing Editor of Art in America. He was formerly its Managing Editor. His monograph on Stephen Antonakos will be published by Rizzoli in the spring of 2023. A senior editor at Snap Editions, NYC, David is the author of “David Ebony + Art Books,” a regular feature column for Yale University Press online, and a frequent contributor to artnet News and Garage magazine, among other publications. He received his MA in art history from Hunter College, New York, where he studied with theorist Rosalind Krauss, and artist Robert Morris. David Ebony is also an independent curator; among his recent exhibitions are “Grasshopper: A Judy Pfaff Survey,” at CR10, Linlithgow, New York, in 2016; and “Metropolis,” at Edward Tyler Nahem Gallery, New York, in 2015. He is the author of numerous artist monographs, including Julio Larraz (Rizzoli/Alecta, 2021); Enoc Perez: Liberty and Restraint [Dallas Contemporary/Mousse, 2019]; Beatriz Milhazes (Taschen 2017); Arne Svenson: The Neighbors (2015); Anselm Reyle: Mystic Silver (2012); Emily Mason: The Fifth Element (2006); Craigie Horsfield: Relation (2005); Carlo Maria Mariani (2001); and Graham Sutherland: A Retrospective (1998). He lives and works in New York City. a


Dr. Sozita Goudouna is a professor, curator, and author. Dr. Goudouna’s book Beckett’s Breath: Anti-theatricality and the Visual Arts was published by Edinburgh Critical Studies in Modernism and released in the US by Oxford University Press. Dr. Goudouna holds a PhD from the University of London, and an MA from King’s College London and RADA Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. She has had a distinguished 20-year career in the cultural sector, serving in many executive roles prior to becoming the director of the non-profit Greece in USA in 2020. Her internationally exhibited projects include participations at the New Museum, Performa Biennial in New York, Documenta, Onassis Foundation New York, French Consulate NYC, Hunterian Museum, Benaki Museum, Byzantine Museum, EMST Contemporary Art Museum among others.

She is head of operations at Raymond Pettibon Studio, adjunct professor at Pace University, and visiting professor at City University New York (CUNY) and New York University. She has taught at New York University since 2015 as the inaugural Andrew W. Mellon Curator fellow at Performa Biennial in NYC. She has also taught at the New School, SUNY, Roger Williams University, and the University of the Peloponnese among other universities. Prior to joining Performa, she was the three year artistic director of the 1st EU-funded research and exhibitions program in Athens, under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture. During her directorship, she curated and commissioned projects by Martin Creed, Santiago Sierra, Lynda Benglis, and Roy Ascott.

She collaborated in 2014 with Marina Abramovic for the production of “Seven Deaths”. She is the founding director of the US non-profit Greece in USA for the promotion of contemporary Greek art. Sozita served as treasurer of the board of directors of AICA Hellas International Art Critics Association and as member of the board of directors at ITI International Theatre Association UNESCO.


Mon–Fri: 10am–6pm
Sat: 10am–4pm
Sun: Closed


FIAF Gallery
22 East 60th Street, 1st Floor
New York, NY 10022

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