Sculptress Venia Dimitrakopoulou was born in Athens where she lives and works. She graduated from Pierce – The American College of Greece in 1983, and went on to study Theater at the Drama School of the Athens Conservatoire. She also attended sculpture classes at the Athens School of Fine Arts (ASFA) with Professor Theodoros Papagiannis, and attended drawing classes at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris (ENSBA) with Professor Daniel Lacomme.
Venia has presented solo exhibitions in Greece and Italy, and has also participated in many group exhibitions in Greece and abroad. Her work is located in public spaces, as well as in private collections.
Her work Promahones, exhibited at the Benaki Museum in 2014-15, is currently installed in front of the National Archaeological Museum (NAM) in Athens. In 2017, the President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella, awarded Venia with the title of Knight of the Order of the Merit of the Italian Republic, in recognition of her work. She is a member of the Chamber of Fine Arts of Greece (EETE), and has published the book Promahones with Hatje Cantz.
What are three enduring values Pierce has taught you?
To serve, to be open minded, to act.
Describe Pierce in three words.
Connectivity, Creativity, Structure.
Which is your fondest memory from your time at Pierce?
Commencement! Students and teachers alike were happy and deeply moved, it was a moment much like when a child leaves the family ‘nest’…
What do you miss most from your days at Pierce?
Lunch time with classmates and friends!!!
If you could go back in time, is there anything that would you do differently?
I would be much more diligent throughout the academic year.
Where was your favorite spot on campus?
The library and galleries.
Who was your favorite teacher and why?
Many! Mr. Drakopoulos in Physics, Mr. Kremos in Chemistry, Mrs. Drakaki in Ancient Greek, Mr. Moustakis in Religion, Mr. Orfanoudakis… They were all so caring and committed to our progress!
After graduation, have you maintained a relationship with your school and classmates?
Most of us are still connected, and I have many friends from those days.
Looking back, how did your time at Pierce help you become the person you are today?
It shaped my personality and my whole attitude towards life!
What advice would you give a new student at Pierce?
To take advantage of these years, to profit as much as possible from all the opportunities offered!
Where do you get your inspiration from?
From everything that surrounds me: the world we live in, the grid that connects and disconnects, time present and time past, the Greek light, the gift of life…
What is your motto in life?
Feel the right timing, be patient, don’t give up.