- Tell us some words about the Printmaking Festival, how it was created and in what occasion?
The Athens Print Fest began in 2009. The occasion was the fact that as a Greek Printmakers Association we were forced to close an exhibition space we had and organized exhibitions from Greece and abroad. So we missed the contact we had with colleagues and the people but also the fact that it is difficult to project our work in other areas . So we decided to organize the festival in collaboration with the Organization of Culture, Youth and Sports of the City of Athens.
- How many years this institution counts till now and who are the people who work behind it?
The Festival is held every three years. This is the third. Apart from me and my collaborator Florence Christakis, all three festivals were implemented with the voluntary participation of many artists and friends and volunteers are always based on the good cooperation we have.
- What could you say that you have achieved after so many years, what makes you proud about this festival?
It’s a fact that the Festival and the constant presentations we make as Printmaking Association have given an impetus to the printmaking. People learn about the possibilities and colleagues have been active and producing new projects, developing their work. Young printmakers have found an expression step and display their works.
- How many countries are taking part in the festival and how many rooms in Athens occupy your exhibitions?
In the 3rd Athens Print Fest / Abracadabra apart from Greece, participate artists from Mexico with works by Jose Guadalupe Posada, Sweden with works by Svenerik Jakobsson, Margareta Rostin, Mischa Bjorkroos, Margon Lindberg, Nikos Terzis, Chun Lee Wang Gurt, and Ahmed Modhir, the Czech artist Jiří Sliva, from India Kavita Nayar and Yusuf, from Cyprus, Annie Erotokritos, Kyriakos Theocharous, Sabellius Michael Euclid Papadopoulos, Michael Soldier, Stathis Paparoditis and Chourik Torossian, and artists from Italy.
- Given the crisis in Greece I imagine that you have faced many difficulties in making these festivals. Which is the area that you could say that concentrates the greatest difficulty?
Certainly the crisis has stopped many things we had originally planned. But what was very difficult for us is that we could not do some forward planning. They were all in a constant standby and not planned anything in the long run. Nobody answered you about something that should be done in the future. All were arranged for the next two months at most.
- Let’s go a little further and generally speaking, tell us your personal opinion about what the dynamics of printmaking in recent years and what is the place of art which now occupies the cultural life?
In recent years, printmaking is characterized by openness. More exhibitions, more people. In this greatly helped the festivals and the new generation of printmakers who are quite dynamic. But it has a long way to make even to take the place it deserves.
- Finally, after the festival, what next? What are your future plans in Greece and abroad?
We prepare as an Printmaking Association an exhibition in autumn, and in 2017 a series of events for our 30th birthdays. More news you will have eventually.
We thank a lot the President of the Greek Printmaking Association, Mr Nikos Stavrakantonakis.
The Athens Print Fest/ Third Edition of the International Festival of Printmaking, organized by Cultural and Athletic department of the Municipality of Athens and the of Greek Printmaking Association, titled Abracadabra from 1 to 31 March 2016.
The Athens Print Fest/ Third Edition is inaugurated with the exhibition 100 years Jose Guadalupe Posada in the Art Gallery of the Municipality of Athens on Tuesday March 1 at 19.30.
Editing: Eleftheria Vonaparti – Translated by: Eleftheria Vonaparti