Commercial galleries

Gogo Greece lightning: Gagosian opens new gallery in Athens

Gallery has had a premises in city since 2009 but will open bigger space this September with exhibition of Brice Marden's work

Gagosian's new gallery in Athens will open in September © Gagosian

Gagosian is to open a new gallery in Athens this autumn with an exhibition of marble and works on paper by the US artist Brice Marden, who has a studio in Greece. The show will run from 24 September­ to 19 December at the gallery's new space at 22 Anapiron Polemou Street in Athens.

Gagosian has had a smaller gallery in the city since 2009, when it opened with an exhibition by Cy Twombly. But now, says the director of Gagosian Athens Christina Papadopoulou, it is "moving to a larger, free-standing Neoclassical building in the same neighbourhood which offers our artists an expanded exhibition space and allows us to further engage with the local collectors and scene."

Marden had a holiday home on the Greek island of Hydra and in the summer of 1981, started painting bars and abstract forms of colour on fragments of locally-sourced marble, a pursuit he continued for the next 20 years. A selection of these marbles will be shown in the exhibition, the artist's first solo show in Greece in four decades, along with a group of Marden's ink drawings that also explore mark-making and composition.

“I can't think of a more fitting artist to open the new space in Athens than Brice Marden," Larry Gagosian says. "The marble sourced for these paintings was found on the island of Hydra, where Brice has had a studio for close to 50 years. It's almost like a homecoming.”

Papadopoulou says that, while the art market may be small, "Greece is home to some major collections of contemporary art and there’s a rapidly developing vibrant young collectors scene." The country is also home to a small but active cluster of contemporary art galleries, including Rodeo, The Breeder, Bernier/Eliades and Kalfayan Galleries, all of which exhibit at Art Basel fairs.

Meanwhile, Gagosian confirmed with Artnet that the gallery has negotiated an exclusive occupancy arrangement with the Marciano Art Foundation in Los Angeles to run the programming at its Grand Theater Gallery in the former Masonic temple in mid-Wilshire from January 2021. The mega-dealer got his start selling posters in the city and has a flagship space in Beverly Hills.