I practice a research that focuses on the
relation between body, sound and image and I am interested in the sculpture tangibility of the bodies, the prolonged duration and the aesthetic precision.
It is about a study of abstraction where its strength consists on the intensity between human subject and visual object, between time and space, movement and sound. An important area of creation is the approach of art and philosophy as well as art and science.
The choreographic research consists on a mechanistic approach of movement using at the same time the body as a canvas, as an abstract surface, so that the movement can be in the image and the movement can vibrates the image.
The kinetic vocabulary of the company focuses on the development of a personal choreographic language which deviates from the recognizable forms of contemporary dance and usually takes a hybrid form.
My performances do not tell a story. The scenic installations that always make
up the starting point of the global composition are characterized by the
creation of timeless spaces, by the creation of situations and fields which are
interpreted more by the unconscious and less by the logic.
The company’s works, often like choreographic installations in movement, approaches the scenic space like an exhibition room, the performance itself like an exposed object and propose to the audience the role of the visitor. I could say that my pieces are more likely « performances that dance » than dance performances »…
Choreographer, Dancer, Performer
Spyros Kouvaras was born in Greece and he is choreographer, performer and artist based in Paris and in Athens. He studied Graphic Design and History of Art at AKTO-ART AND DESIGN College in Athens, contemporary dance and choreography - performance at the National Dance Center of France and he also graduated from the European Academy of Physical Theatre in Paris.
In 2008 in Paris, he established Synthesis 748 Company and in 2010, at the International Visual Theatre, Spyros Kouvaras powered by the Ministry of Culture of France and by the National Dance Center of France, creates the solo dance performance «L’Isolement dans un Espace Infini», a piece for a naked body and 100 meters of gelatin, which was performed in France, in Greece, in Germany and in Sweden.
In 2012 Spyros Kouvaras, powered by the National Dance Center of France in Paris, creates the «You cannot enter twice the same river», a video dance project for 2 bodies and musical composition in natural environment. This video dance is already exhibited and projected in France, in Greece, in Italy, in Belgium, in Argentina and in Colombia.
In 2014, coproduced by Espace André Malraux in Paris and powered by the National Dance Center of France in Paris, creates at the the Athens School of Fine Arts, the duet «Nova Aetas», a choreographic installation for 2 bodies, 3 cubic meters of dry logs, 400 gr. of yellow sand, 250 gr. of blue gravel, musical composition and video art. The project was already exhibited and performed in Germany, in Greece and in France.
In 2015, coproduced by Owl Art Space gallery in Athens, Spyros Kouvaras creates and performs «OPUS I # temporality», a choreographic performance for the visual project MetroLogos, curated by A. Nasioula and S. Kyriakou. «OPUS I # temporality», is a dance piece for 1 body, musical composition and 15 visual, mixed media installations and has already been exhibited and performed in Greece, in Germany and in Biennale of Colombia.
On the same year, again coproduced by Owl Art Space gallery, creates the site specific performance, «Anaskamma # 1: Untitled (Memory)», a choreography for 3 bodies in an archaeological location. The performance was created based on the thematic Transitions / Space – Time, for the visual project MetroLogos of Owl Art Space gallery, curated by A. Nasioula and A. Skourtis.
In February 2016, the art@CMS-programme of the CMS Experiment at CERN (CH), invites Spyros Kouvaras to create a choreographic performance for the audio-visual installation of INFN, The Gift of the Mass, based on the Higgs particle. So thus, Kouvaras created «10-22 sec», an interactive solo choreography for 1 body, 3 movement sensors and musical composition, which has been exhibited and performed in Athens International Science and Art Festival, in April 2016.
In July 2016, Synthesis 748 Company and Spyros Kouvaras, coproduced by John F. Costopoulos Foundation in Greece as well as by the National Dance Center of France in Paris, created «3 mountains not to climb», a choreographic installation for 3 bodies, musical composition and 14 objects. The piece had its premiere at Roman Odium in Greece, has also been performed in Athens at Michael Cacoyannis Foundation and during 2017-2018 will be performed in various countries in Europe.
In April 2017, Owl Art Space gallery invites Spyros Kouvaras to co-curate the 6th thematic exhibition of the visual project MetroLogos, in which choreographers, performers, composers and visual artists create and present their works at the gallery. During the exhibition, Spyros Kouvaras creates and performs «Aequam», a choreographic performance for 1 body, stone, nails, painting color, text and musical environment. «Aequam» has also been performed in Athens at the National Museum of Contemporary Art in the frame of the Performance Philosophy School of Athens Symposium II, which was co-organized by the National Museum of Contemporary Art and by the Performance Philosophy International Network.
In April 2018, Spyros Kouvaras creates "Waste Land-AFTER", a choreographic installation for 5 dancers and musical composition. The project was funded by the Greek Ministry of Culture and by John. F. Costopoulos Foundation as well. "Waste Land-AFTER" had its premiere at Contemporary Theatre in Athens the 13th of April.
Spyros Kouvaras is selected contemporary artist of the International Network, Pépinières Européennes and he is powered for his projects by John F. Costopoulos Foundation, by the Ministry of Culture in Greece and also by the National Dance Center of France in Paris and by Owl Art Space gallery as well.
BIBLIOGRAPHY (presentation of S. Kouvaras’ works in art editions)
1. LANDESCAPE CONTEMPORARY ART REVIEW 2017
2. CONTEMPORARY PERFORMANCES ALMANAC 2016
3. PEPINIERES EUROPEENNES 2015 – PARK IN PROGRESS PROJECT
An Interview of Spyros Kouvaras
# How you use the elements of the slowness and abstraction in your work?
This deceleration, as well as the reduction of movement straight to time with the physicality of the performer, results reveal the body in postures which are unnatural and unusual. This creates further abstraction on the work and on the way that we see the body as a fragmentary form, and finally as a force that affects you.
With its slowness and its gradual development, the choreography suggests us a situation of «waiting», where the form is captured easily. As the images change, the relation between space, duration and movement grow strongly and the audience is able to get to it in his own way.
What was the idea of the « OPUS I # temporality » and how challenging the established relation between the performer, space and audience?
The OPUS I # temporality began as a discussion between me and Alexandra Nasioula, visual artist and curator at Owl Art Space gallery, and through our conciliation decided to explore the idea of creating a performance which would take the form of a « live, choreographic installation. »
The place where you will be presented with a performance affects the establishment of the project? How different is the hiring of a project in an exhibition room than in a theatrical context?
Yes of course. Although there is always a clear line in my work, no matter of its presentation framework (theater, public space, museum or gallery), all my works tend to be relatively "quiet." The sculpture tangibility of the body is always present, as well as the immobility that we acquire as performers-dancers, and the paradox of this choreographic immobility. What changes is the duration, is the idea if there is a clear start and end of the performance, and certainly the approach to the audience.
It is a co-existence in space and time through sound and energy. Assuming that the energy of the visual work comes from the inner entity and diffuses outward, while we focus on the same time our attention to the moving body, which is also pushed by an inner vibration outwards, we realize that these two energy lines pulsate.
Source: LIFO magazine: issue may 2015 / Athens – Greece
# On Friday the 22nd of July, the choreographic installation, 3 mountains not to climb, of Spyros Kouvaras and Synthesis 748 Company, had its European premiere at Roman Odeum in Patras.
Synthesis 748 was established in Paris in 2008 and since then has produced 8 hybrid, dance performances, which have been presented in theatres, festivals, galleries and museums in France, Germany, Greece, Sweden, Argentina, Colombia and elsewhere.
As the performance’s brochure informs us, the choreographer, inspired by F. Nietzsche’s “The Birth of Tragedy" created an environment of a Live installation in movement.
The ancient Greek tragedy comes from the tragic dance. In the beginning, it was only the dance, the drama was added much later. With the rhythmic tones of the dance the soul is enlivened by the tragedy. Between the world of Dionysus and the reality, a chasm of oblivion is opened and the dithyrambic dance is the living fortress against the onset of reality and conveys the spirit of the audience in a Dionysian flare. Dionysus is the tragic hero who appears in many forms as a fighting hero and is simultaneously entangled in the tentacles of the individual will.
The performance was mainly addressed to an audience familiar to contemporary dance and art. Kouvaras created a timeless space without a precise identity and through movements of precision introduced us to a ceremonial atmosphere, in a contemporary ritual. Basic elements of the tragedy, such as man’s struggle, the rise and fall of the human being, appear on stage. The choreography is also enhanced by the original music, the lighting and the use of the 14 objects which sometimes take organic forms.
Source: 26th of July 2016 – www.afternoiz.com / Greece
# More than 200 people last weekend saw the modernist, symbolic performance « Nova Aetas » at Espace André Malraux in Herblay. It was there the contemporary dance company Synthesis 748 from Paris, introducing us a new dance vocabulary. A conceptual dance piece of high esthetic at the limits of the performance art. In a scenic space, which was extended even out of the stage and was composed by dry logs, gravel and colored powders, the two dancers placed in timeless video looked more like a part of a choreographic installation. The piece started with a dance “prelude” at the foyer of the theatre during the entrance of the audience. On stage the minimalistic choreography of the beginning, worked with great precision, is deconstructed gradually and in combination with the original music composition of Giorgos Kouvaras created an organic relation with the audience, which led us in a hypnotic atmosphere of high tension during 50 minutes. I could say that Spyros Kouvaras’ work, balanced between a piece of dance and a contemporary art exhibition and as the choreographer told us after the performance, « in « Nova Aetas it is important not to seek to understand what the choreography represents, but initially to call upon the subconscious ».
Source: Danseur magazine 02.05.2014 / France
# Spyros Kouvaras (born in
Greece) set the dark antithesis with L’isolement dans un espace infini.
He placed a character wrapped in a clear and tight gelatin, he dances
in a space that constantly changes color and light, animating even the background and always acting coldly.
Impressive animality in the movement, the gestures of the hands are like hooks, a human being as an artificial Homunculus, vestige of a disaster who wanders aimlessly searching for something…
The music of Giorgos Kouvaras becomes more and more intense, enriched with percussion, with wind instruments, pulses and with strings.
The blackouts become progressively longer and longer to the permanent darkness. And even when the choreography remains conventional for few moments - rolls over the back in a circle, head circles, walking on the same place - Kouvaras creates the oppressive atmosphere of a limbo.
Source: 02.10.2012 -Tanznetz / Germany
# Spyros Kouvaras and his Company Synthesis 748 is a new revelation of the Greek choreographic landscape in 2010. He left us best impressions after two performances at Apollon National Theatre in Patras last weekend.
An original innovated choreographic and dance language of great precision, at the limits of the performance some times, which examined the problematic of human’s isolation in modern society.
The young choreographer and dancer who lives and works in Paris, performed during 50 minutes wrapped in tight gelatine -extra ordinary design by Korina Kotsiri his artistic partner -, in a high volume scenic space which changed colours constantly. This special light design by Nicolas Damien on his costume material gave us hallucinatory phenomena.
The contemporary original music of the performance composed by George Kouvaras, Spyro’s brother, let us “travel“ in an electroacoustic space which vibrates the stage with high intensity, even at the moments of the silence..!
L'Isolement dans un Espace Infini will be also performed in Athens from 14-17 of May.
Source: 11.05.2010 – Peloponnesus newspaper / Greece