FEATURED: Kostis Grivakis – Artist

I don’t know if recycling ever gets boring, or if we ever fall out of love with our favourite paintings and portraits by renowned artists, but just in case, here’s someone who can kill two birds with one stone. (Metaphorically speaking of course, because when you think about it, stoning birds is quite mean.)

Konstantinos “Kostis” Grivakis is a Greek artist and art teacher who has a knack for turning everyday used household items into… art. And lots of it! Not only is he a recycling genius, but he also makes collages of famous figures in traditional Omani dress and settings, which results in something either quite amusing or exceptionally stunning (see: collage of Elizabeth Taylor). Grivakis also creates collages of world-famous works of art mixed with popular landmarks in Oman.

Kostis Grivakis - Monet's Water Lilies in Muttrah, Oman collage
Collage of Claude Monet’s “Water Lilies” and Muttrah, Oman
Kostis Grivakis - Omani Harry Potter collage
Collage of Harry Potter in Nakhal, Oman
Kostis Grivakis - Pencils in Sardine Cans Recycled
Little cities made from recycled small colouring pencils in recycled sardine tins, painted by hand
Kostis Grivakis - Wooden Figures Omani Couple
Wooden Omani figures, handcut and handpainted

There is a great deal of detail in what at first glance appears to be simple and, in a sense, minimalist artwork. Upon greater study of his paintings, you realise that what your eyes were initially drawn to are the soft blending, depth of hue and intricate use of patterns. The first time I saw one of his collages – a portrait of Sultan Qaboos – I couldn’t tell if it was done by hand or not. Like most of his painted figures (recycled or of handcut wood), it was.

Kostis Grivakis - Sultan Qaboos collage portrait 2
Handmade collage of Sultan Qaboos of Oman
Kostis Grivakis - Deodorant Bottles Recycled
Omani figures made from recycled deodorant bottles
Kostis Grivakis - Monet's Water Lilies in Wadi Bani Khalid, Oman collage
Collage of Claude Monet’s “Water Lilies” and Wadi Bani Khalid in Oman
Kostis Grivakis - Omani Elizabeth Taylor collage
Omani Elizabeth Taylor
Kostis Grivakis - Old Suitcase Recycled
Old recycled suitcase that Grivakis found in a trash can, turned into a little Omani town.

Grivakis’ style is sophisticatedly cartoon-like, and there’s a warmth that comes from what he creates – I wouldn’t be surprised if every single piece was made with a smile on his face.

An artist who is “inspired by [Oman], the most beautiful place in the world and its amazing people,” Grivakis likes to “recycle everything and turn everyday stuff [into] little pieces of art.” He also has plans to open his own shop in Muscat in the future, “where everything will be created by me”.

Kostis Grivakis - Omani Wooden Figures
Group of Omani wooden figures
Kostis Grivakis - Omani Harry and Meghan collage
Collage of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex as Omani people
Kostis Grivakis - van Gogh's Starry Night in Grand Mosque, Oman collage
Vincent van Gogh’s “The Starry Night” in collage with The Grand Mosque in Oman
Kostis Grivakis Artist
Artist Kostis Grivakis with his collage portrait of Sultan Qaboos

I’m really glad that Kostis Grivakis works with children, because he is on par with them in terms of imagination. He (as we all do) learns a lot from them, but I am sure that they learn a lot from him because he is exactly what they need: an artist with an innovative and exemplary approach, who is conscientious enough and capable of mixing recycling with art; one contributing to the celebration and preservation of culture. An artist with a seemingly bottomless reserve of creativity.

You can find Kostis Grivakis on:


2 thoughts on “FEATURED: Kostis Grivakis – Artist

    1. Hi Sally,

      Thank you for your comment. As mentioned above, and as far as I am aware, Kostis Grivakis does indeed have plans to open a shop in Oman in the future. For more information in the meantime, you could get into direct contact with Kostis through one of the links provided at the bottom of the post. He is very interactive on social media, and I am sure that he appreciates your interest and would be happy to help/update you.

      Best wishes,
      Eleanor, OMOH


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