Zoomorphism | Reimagining Personal Mythologies
Curated by Dr Kostas Prapoglou
On April 3rd, Hermès is pleased to announce the reopening of its store on the coveted corner of Voukourestiou Street and Stadiou Avenue. In celebration of its annual theme “Object Sense”and to mark the reopening of Hermès’ landmark Athenian boutique, the Maison commissioned artist Socratis Socratous, a long standing collaborator of HERMES, to bring the store’s windows to life with a specially designed installation.
The installation revisits the recurrent theme of zoomorphism as found in Mediterranean cultures and combines it with the Maison’s imagery and philosophy. Each store window is metamorphosed into a unique habitat reminiscent of an oneiric mythological scene, where ancient iconography converses with Hermès’ creations and their inherent aesthetic qualities. Constructed with diverse materials such as iron and bronze, Socratous’ objects engage in an active dialogue with those by Hermès, and generate a stimulating and thought-provoking narrative that ebbs and flows betweenthe imaginary and the real.
“The exuberant participation of animals–now transformed into objects in Socratous’s story–enunciates their role in the expressive mode of Hermès through its innumerable patterns andscenes emerging throughout its history. Criss-crossing between the domains of the imaginary and the real, the artist indulges viewers in a playful yet mystical atmosphere, where objects come to life.At the same time, the limitless human imagination that always integrates zoomorphic representations into everyday life suddenly takes the shape of three-dimensional works that gradually evolve into ritualistic artefacts. And as in the case of rhyton, the opening of the brand new Hermès store in Athens fabricates the connection between the functional hypostasis of the essence of the object with the ceremonial and celebratory aspect of life itself” as quoted by DrKostas Prapoglou, curator.
The craftsmanship of Hermès objects featured with items that emphasise the relationship between ancient iconography and a modern aesthetic, invite us to discover Hermès’ culture and its constant quest to pursue creativity and excellence.
Socratis Socratous (b. in Paphos, Cyprus) lives and works in Athens, Greece. Socratis Socratous’ work has been exhibited internationally at distinguished museums and institutions including Centre Pompidou, Paris; BOZAR, Brussels; Anne and Gordon Samstag Museum of Art, Adelaide, SouthAustralia; State Museum of Contemporary Art, Thessaloniki; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens; Kunsthalle Athena, Athens; Venice Biennale, Thessaloniki Biennale; Riwaq Biennial. Socratis Socratous is represented by The Breeder.