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DESTE Foundation Project Space, Slaughterhouse, Hydra

6 JUN 2021

How a remote island was turned into a contemporary Art mecca.

In the small harbour of Hydra, Greece next to the white yachts and old fishing boats you can find an extravagant yacht clothed in a kaleidoscopic pattern of black, yellow and blue. The yacht’s eye-catching exterior was designed by Jeff Koons - the most expensive living artist - and it belongs to Dakis Joannou, the Cypriot collector and founder of the non-profit art foundation Deste.

One of Deste’s popular projects (“deste” in Greek means to look) has been the conversion of a slaughterhouse on Hydra into a contemporary art space. “Hydra has always been a haven for artists, writers, and musicians, and the slaughterhouse building, even when it was in operation, was an intriguing sight and Project Space remains a specially charged, mysterious, and evocative site”, says Regina Alivisatos, the administrator of the foundation.

This summer the exhibition “The Greek Gift” coordinated by Massimiliano Gioni will take place at the Hydra slaughterhouse. Expect a series of new and existing works, alongside found objects and impromptu responses from a variety of artists such as Jenny Holzer, Elizabeth Peyton and Matthew Barney amongst others. Whilst the following summer, in 2022, Jeff Koons himself will arrive on the island in a much anticipated blockbuster exhibition.

Finally, we ask Ms. Alivisatos, what’s the first thing that a visitor should do when they enter the Deste Projectspace Slaughterhouse and she replied “To simply enjoy the show!”.

 

'The Greek Gift'

DESTE Foundation Project Space, Slaughterhouse, Hydra
June 22, 2021 - October 31, 2021
Daily 11:00–13:00 & 19:00–22:00

'The Greek Gift', © 'Deste' Foundatioon
'The Greek Gift', © 'Deste' Foundatioon
Dakis Joannou yacht at Hydra's Island harbour designed by Jeff Koons, © Seesawtravels
Dakis Joannou yacht at Hydra's Island harbour designed by Jeff Koons, © Seesawtravels

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Written by Nassia Matsa. London-based, Athens-born writer on culture and tech with published work in Financial Times, Wired and Vogue. She is also a model with campaigns for brands such as Prada, Balenciaga and Burberry among others