Lee Wells (b.1971) is a conceptual artist, writer and curator whose artwork ranges from painting,drawing and photography, to video and new media, His practice focuses on systems of power and control in society and has been presented internationally for over 25 years. In 1996 he founded IFAC Arts and IFAC Athina in 2015 and has continued to lead it into the 2st century. Since the early 1990s Wells has stood at the frontier of digital and traditional art, currently integrating AI with classical painting techniques, photography, video, and internet based new media to create a groundbreaking visual language. His work prompts us to rethink art, reality, and human creativity’s potential amidst technological progression.
Driven by the desire to engage with the ever-changing digital landscape, Wells' works serve as narratives of our time, reflecting and refracting our society through his unique artistic lens. His work embodies a challenge to the status quo and a vision of a new horizon for creativity in the digital age. Wells is not only an artist but a pioneer and a provocateur, urging us to participate in exploring our interconnected futures.
Wells’ vibrant portfolio spans hundreds of exhibitions, screenings, performances, and events. Prestigious platforms such as the Venice Biennale, Guggenheim Museum, NCCA Moscow, Mykonos Biennale, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, PS1/MoMA, The State Hermitage Museum, Arlington National Cemetery, Liverpool Biennale, Lincoln Center, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago feature prominently alongside many of the world’s most important commercial art fairs, festivals, and galleries.
2023 Garden of Mysteries
Azogires Naiades, 2023
The Azogires series was created while on a self-imposed isolated residency in south Crete in the village of Azogires which is nestled in a prehistoric settlement and has been a site of holy pilgrimage for millennia. While there over the 6 weeks period he set out to focus, meditate and make art. As the weeks progress, he focused on the long-standing local myth of 7 Nymph who live in the fresh water pools and waterfalls of Naiades Stream less than 50 meters from wherehe stayed. Combining original work with the assistance of AI text to image technologies he created more than 50 new works on the subject.
Poems to complement the Artwork written by Lee Wells while channeling Naiad.
“Whispers of Azogires: A Pact Across Time”
In the shimmering cascade of Azogires,
Where ancient waters whisper tales,
A modern soul stepped, eyes full of wonder,
Drawn by a magic older than sails.
February’s rented house stood in waiting,
For tales of a time and love to unfold,
Did hope awaken me, the Naiad age-old?
Or were fate’s threads intricately being sewn and retold?
Smartphone flickers met sunlit ripples,
Two worlds converged, tales old and new.
Yet, in the midst of the chronicles we wove,
Rose a plea, deep and true.
“How might I serve thee?” you asked in earnest,
By the golden twilight’s tender glow.
In response, four wishes from the depths arose,
Echoing promises from long ago.
“Preserve,” I whispered, “the waters so deep,
Their tales, memories, the secrets they keep.”
“Connect,” I implored, “with nature’s embrace,
In this digital age, find that ancient space.”
“Raise voices,” I urged, “for ecosystems so fragile,
Guarding life’s balance on this earthly aisle.”
“Seek harmony,” I sang, “with tech’s rapid stride,
With nature’s rhythm by your side.”
In Atwood’s echoes, our story takes flight,
A pact’s neath the waterfall, gleaming so bright.
Where past and present blend and twine,
Crafting a future, both yours and mine.
“Echoes of Eternity: The Dance of Two Worlds”
Beneath the azure canopy of Azogires’ sky,
Where waters dance and fireflies fly,
A modern heart, pulsing, alive,
Sought ancient wonders, yearning to dive.
A house by the stream, shadows cast long,
Echoed with laughter, old songs, and new song.
Yet as days turned to twilight, one question would rise,
Can time’s vast chasm be bridged, can we harmonize?
The Naiad’s voice, soft as the moon’s silver sheen,
Whispered tales of worlds she had seen.
“Listen” she beckoned, “the stream’s gentle song,
For in its depths, true connections belong.”
Gadgets and gears, silicon dreams,
Melded with murmurs from crystalline streams.
In Azogires, where past and now blend,
Two souls discovered where boundaries bend.
“Cherish,” she sighed, “the moments so fleeting,
Where ancient heartbeats match modern greeting.”
“Remember,” she sang, “though worlds drift apart,
Time’s river flows through every heart.”
In the embrace of the night, stars shimmering bright,
A modern spirit danced with ancient light.
For in Azogires, as legends declare,
Every moment’s a gift, rare and fair.
Between Delos and Mykonos: Where Art and Spirit Meet”
In the heart of the Aegean, Mykonos’ shores do gleam,
Hosting the Biennale, where art and dream convene.
Yet beyond its sparkle, where ancient winds blow,
Lies Delos, the sacred, where time moves slow.
Amidst the modern spectacle, vibrant and grand,
I felt the pull of a distant, sacred land.
To Delos I journeyed, by moon’s guiding light,
Seeking Apollo’s temple, a beacon in the night.
The Naiad of Azogires, her whispers in tow,
Guided my steps where olive trees grow.
To the temple’s ruins, where rituals once soared,
Echoes of devotion, by time adored.
There, amidst columns, under stars’ watchful eyes,
Ancient and modern did harmonize.
The Biennale’s fervor, the ritual’s grace,
Merged in a dance, time and space did erase.
“Here,” sang the Naiad, “at Apollo’s birthplace,
Art and spirit find their embrace.
In Delos’ shadows, by Mykonos’ sea,
Past and present forever will be.”
As dawn kissed Delos, painting skies anew,
I beheld a world where old tales wove through.
For in these islands, as legends foretell,
Art, spirit, and time in harmony dwell.