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Varvara Liakounakou (PC): The sets for our school’s theatrical performances were the most creative moments of my mathematical life

Conversation with Iliana Sofia Georgiadis – Head of ACG Art Committee of our Alumni Association.

Varvara Liakounakou was born in Athens in 1978. She graduated from Pierce College in 1996. She studied at the Fine Arts in Florence between 1997-2001. In the past he lived and worked in Athens, southern Crete and New York (2001-2014). She is the co-organizer of the Mudhouse Residency, in Agios Ioannis, Crete since 2014. She lives and works in Athens and southern Crete.

He has participated in many group exhibitions, among which the most recent, “Painting ’21” at the Municipal Gallery and Old Magistrate’s Court of Agios Nikolaos, Crete curated by Ex Situ (Eleni Koukou and Theofilos Trampoulis) in 2022 and at the Benaki Museum with the theme “Medusa Art Gallery” curated by Elisabeth Plessa in 2022.

He has also had several solo exhibitions, the most recent being at the Citronne Gallery in 2022 and at the Medusa Gallery in 2017 in Athens.

Her works are in several private collections – one of which is the Collection of Sotiris Felios – as well as in the Vorre Museum.

-What is art for you?

-It is very difficult to define. I would agree with Wikipedia’s explanation: By Art you mean mental activity or creation that is significant because of its appeal to human emotions, stimulating mind and emotion.

-Tell us about some standout moments from your school years at Pierce.

-My favorite moments at Pierce were when I worked on the sets for almost every holiday play. I was given the opportunity to work with materials I had never used before and to paint on very large surfaces. Also, creative thinking helped me to come up with ideas for the necessary scenery.

-What supplies did our School give you, both for your life and for art?

-For art, as I mentioned in the previous question, my participation in the construction of the theater scenery was very important. It was a great lesson in creativity and collaboration. For life, increased hours of English have helped me as today I work a lot with foreigners and mainly Americans

-How much does music inspire you?

– Music accompanies us all in life. I can’t imagine life without melodies. But it is not a source of inspiration par excellence for me. I listen to music in my daily life. It is like the sound of the house or a wallpaper on a wall. Sometimes, I listen to it intently and enjoy it.

-Is dancing part of your life?

-I have been dancing tango for twelve years. It inspires and influences me for the subjects I paint which are mostly couples.

-Tell us about the Mudhouse Residency in Crete, which you collaborate with.

-The Mudhouse residency is an art residency for professional artists – painters, photographers, dancers, musicians, writers, etc. I collaborate with the American visual artist Jennifer Carolin and we have been running it since 2015 in a village in southern Crete. Artists from all over the world come and work in the village for two weeks. At the end of their stay, we organize an exhibition with the creations of the artists in the cultural space of the village.

-Tell us about your recent solo exhibition entitled “Union” at Citronne gallery.

– This exhibition has as its theme the union of people. I am interested in the relationships between us and the difficulty in communicating. Ultimately, union is with ourselves.

-What are you doing these days and what are your future plans?

– I continue to paint. I continue to dance and continue the Mudhouse residency. I don’t have any specific plan for the future. Certainly some exhibitions in Greece but maybe also outside.

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