Prehistoric frescoes, the marks and symbols engraved in stone, are man’s first
substantiated attempt to speak about his person, placing himself in a material
environment, not haphazardly, but in a way that he himself desired.
The image, seen in this light, constitutes the Word, and Word is no longer associated
with Broca’s area of the brain.

The moment before engraving was born, there was chaos and darkness. It was
engraving that gave order to chaos and light to darkness. Art creates life and its forms;
Art as Word gives birth to life.

The exhibition of Apostolos Koustas’s work at the Hellenic American Union refers to
prehistoric frescoes and engravings in stone.

Koustas’s age sets him apart from the chaos of modernism; nonetheless he endeavors
to shape his world and looks for a fixed point of reference to set the earth in motion
all over again.

Koustas’s mentors were Sikeliotis and Katraki. Yet Koustas does not share their
references: expatriation, the Party, the Resistance or even the climate during the Civil
War. He seeks points of reference in a more distant past – at the dawn of Word and
Gesture. He turns to the elemental. He draws directly upon the points from where the
subjective takes form and becomes objective. The point from where imitative magic
describes man’s pro-gram who wants to recognize himself, while at the same time
recognizing the world surrounding him.

How will Koustas avoid the atemporal? He selects an altogether ingenious solution.
He uses the dominant material of the modern environment. He engraves on cement
slabs. He has the courage to pit himself against materials belonging to the very world
he questions. He has the courage to appropriate this material and make it a part of the
new world that he envisions and designs.

Reference to prehistoric frescos in Koustas’s work takes on a further dimension,
which is solely the choice of the artist himself. Koustas’s work exudes poetry.
Undoubtedly each plunge into the collective conscience carries poetic overtones. But
here Koustas has managed to make his engravings emerge as flowers on stone.

Flowers from within the cement.
If that isn’t poetry, then what is?

Leonidas-Phoebus Koskos - Executive Director of the Hellenic American Union