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About Christos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A patch of weeds along a busy road or city sidewalk often escapes attention, yet close-up these 'urban wilds' demonstrate an amazing variety of shapes, colors, textures, and patterns.

Background

Christos Hamawi is a professional artist born and raised in Massachusetts.  His work revolves around the beauty, defiance, and determination of nature and the importance of diversity, unity, and community in our lives.  He started painting at the age of 12 while visiting his Croatian relatives in the Istrian region of western Croatia.  He spent a lot of time along the Adriatic coast, which is where he first developed a fascination for nature, art, and history. He studied art in New York, at Hofstra University, where he earned a B.A. in Art History, Film, & Fine Arts with studio concentrations in painting, photography, and cinematography. He worked briefly in the field of film and animation after college, but quickly redirected his focus back to painting and Fine Arts.  In 2011 he began working with mosaics and started designing public art projects.  From 2012 to 2016 he got involved in arts education and served as an artist in residence and instructor for Boston Public Schools, where he involved hundreds of students in several permanent public art projects.  His studio, Bluebrick Studios, was named after the blue brick walls that lined his original studio in Boston's South End.

 

About The Artwork

Christos's painting is currently focused on contemporary portraits of nature and unconventional urban landscapes. His paintings, murals, and mosaics are often inspired by grasses, stones, leaves, trees, branches, wildflowers, weeds, and anything green and growing right through the asphalt in the city.  He often finds his subjects by walking around urban environments and observing how nature digs its way back in and holds on. He sees endless natural micro-worlds constantly seeding and spreading along every city sidewalk around the globe. He's intrigued by the obsession to control and contain nature and yet despite all those efforts, it always finds a way to overcome. "Nature is determined and defiant. In even the harshest of urban environments you'll find delicate green shoots crushing right up through concrete, baked by the hot sun, deprived of water for days on end, and yet thriving."

 

Christos's public art projects are largely community based and centered on themes that resonate strongly with him:  multiculturalism, diversity, unity, nature and the environment, preservation, and conservation. 

You might find him painting out on the street, working on a public art project, installing artwork in an abandoned retail space, or teaching in a classroom.

He's currently working on several new paintings as well as new mixed media public art projects. 

Christos also just recently completed a 4 year artist in residency program for the Josiah Quincy School in Boston, where he provided instruction in Art and Art History through a grant from Edvestors and The Boston Public Schools Arts Expansion Initiative.

Xtos.net is the domain name used for artwork that is created, displayed, or installed in the public realm. Xtos is an abbreviation for Christos, using the Greek letter Chi (X) as when spelling the name Χρίστος

 

Family Heritage

Christos's family heritage is primarily Greco-Croatian.  His father is a Greek immigrant born and raised in a Greek neighborhood of Khartoum in what was then known as The Anglo-Egyptian Sudan and his mother is a Croatian immigrant born and raised in Zagreb. His parents met while attending school in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. His father was studying at Haile Selassie University and his mother was attending a French school due to her father's assignment as an economic advisor for the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. After his parents married they moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts so his father could attend graduate school at MIT. Christos was born and raised outside Boston shortly thereafter.  His last name, Hamawi, is the legacy of a distant ancestor (presumably) from Hama, Syria, a 3000+ year old city with a small Greek Orthodox community.  His most recent Greek ancestors (dating back to the mid-1800's) are from the islands of Crete, Lesvos, and Serifos and his Croatian ancestors are primarily from Zagreb and Zagorje.

 

Public Art Installations, Collections, and Projects

  • Josiah Quincy School & Community Center, Boston MA: "Community Fabric" Glass Mosaic Mural. Spring 2016
  • Josiah Quincy School & Community Center, Boston MA: "Patterns of Diveristy" Ceramic/Mixed Media Mosaic Mural. Fall 2015
  • Boston City Hall: "Inner Strength" Oil on Canvas 6ft x 3 ft. Permanent Collection, 5th floor
  • Boston Children's Hospital: "Feeling Grounded" Acrylic on Maple Panel 6ft x 3ft. Permanent Collection, Main Entrance
  • Northampton Square, Boston MA: "Natural Distractions" A Selection of Custom Prints Permanent Collection, Main Entrance
  • Jook Sing Cafe, Boston MA: "Golden Bamboo" 25ft long Mural in Chinatown  Winter 2015
  • Josiah Quincy School & Community Center, Boston MA: "Dragon of the Earth" Mosaic Sculpture. Spring 2014
  • Josiah Quincy School & Community Center, Boston MA: "The Living Seasons" Mosaic Mural. Fall 2013
  • Grew Elementary School, Hyde Park Boston MA: "Natural Portals" Acrylic on Steel Panels Fall 2012
  • Westin Copley Hotel, Boston MA:  "Rising Above" 75ft+ Mural for corporatate hallway  Spring 2010May 2010
  • Boston Art Commission: Public/Street Art Project "Urban Wilds" Copley Square Fall 2009
  • Boston Art Commission: Public/Street Art "Urban Renewal" Summer St. (Downtown) Fall 2009
  • Boston Art Commission: Public/Street Art "Urban Oasis" Mass Ave & Harrison (South End)  Spring 2009

Exhibitions and Showings

  • "Boston Art Windows" - Exhibition of nature paintings in Downtown Crossing. Boston, MA. Spring 2010 to Fall 2014
  • "Natural Distractions" Solo exhibition of nature paintings. Arclinea Boston July 2008
  • "SoWa Art Walk - Open Studios"  Boston, MA  May 2004, 2005, 2009
  • "Fenway Community Health Men's Event" 2003, 2005, & 2006, 2010 Boston, MA (silent auction)
  • "Boston Artists" Legacy Gallery Boston, MA 2004-2005 (Consignment Artist)
  • "ArtCetera" Cyclorama Boston, MA 2004 (group show)
  • "Some Assembly Required" Courtyard Gallery Boston, MA May 2004 (group show)
  • "The Dog and Pony Show" Courtyard Gallery Boston, MA February 2004 (group show)
  • "Group Art Show" Courtyard Gallery Boston, MA December 2003
  • "On Location" ICA New Group / Vita Brevis Foundation. The Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, MA February 2003
  • "Visual Feast" Kingston Gallery, Boston, MA December, 2002 (group show)
  • "South End Open Studios" Boston, MA 2001-2004 & 2009

Publications, Press, and Honors

  • WBUR / NPR Radio Feb. 4th, 2014 "Lessons From The Classroom: Visual Arts At The Josiah Quincy School
  • SAMPAN Nov. 22, 2013 Quincy Elementary School unveils ´┐ŻLiving Seasons´┐Ż art
  • Bay State Banner June 29, 2013 "Gardner Pilot Academy raises money to support school art programs"
  • South End News May 8, 2013 "South End artist brings antiquity to youth" (Living Seasons Mosaic Mural)
  • Ambassador for the Arts - Boston Public Schools/ Josiah Quincy School, 2012 - Boston, MA
  • South End News "Speaking up for urban nature" Westin Copley Mural and Urban Wilds Series. June 2, 2010
  • Public Works Magazine "Out of the Ordinary " January 2010
  • Design New England Magazine "letter from the editor" (Public Art Projects) Nov-Dec 2009
  • The Week National News Magazine "It Wasn't All Bad" Copley Paintbox - Oct. 30, 2009
  • Boston Globe - "Make more of the city a canvas for artists" Oct. 22, 2009 (Letters to the Editor)
  • Boston Globe - "Painting Outside The Box" Copley Paintbox- Oct. 15, 2009 (Front Page)
  • Boston Courant "...Signal Box Plans" Sept. 11, 2009
  • BU Today "Getting to Know Your Neighbors - South End" August 24, 2009
  • Boston Globe "Style Spy - "Arclinea's Art in Design" August 1, 2008
  • Improper Bostonian July 25 - 28th Impulses - Museums and Galleries, Exhibition at Arclinea.
  • Boston Homes July 26 - August 1, 2008 "Art in the Kitchens"
  • New England Blade "Articles of Nature" June 18, 2008
  • Boston Globe "A study in comfort, no clutter in sight" August 2, 2007
  • In Newsweekly "BSC Opening" January 18, 2006
  • Arts Media March 2004 "The Dog and Pony Show" - Review
  • Boston Globe May 23, 2004 "Today, SoWa's out in the open"
  • Boston Courant "Gateway Gala" March 28, 2005
  • Boston Weekly Dig "Sowa Art Walk" May 2004
  • South End News (Boston) "Stacy Bueschel's Courtyard Gallery" Dec. 18th, 2003
  • Congressional Record Recognition from Rep. Peter King (NY) May 4th, 1994

Community Involvement

  • Artist in Residence / Teaching Artist at Josiah Quincy Elementary School, Chinatown Boston 2012-2016
  • Teaching Artist at Gardner Pilot Academy, Boston May 2013
  • Guest Artist at Mountview Middle School, Holden MA Febrary 11, 2010
  • Worcester Square Neighborhood Assoc. Board Member, Volunteer Artist, and Graphic Designer 2004 - Present
  • Boston Redevelopment Authority: Harrison/Albany Corridor Advisory Panel (SoWa Arts District) 2009-2012
  • Massachusetts Avenue, Boston - Reconstruction Task Force Member 2005 - 2010
  • Fenway Community Health "Men's Event" art donor and/or art installation volunteer Boston MA 2003 - 2012
  • Taste of the South End, Boston: Cookbook Illustration 2005, 2006 (for Aids Action)
  • Boston Sports Club T-Shirt Design for new South End Location 2006 (to help support Washington Gateway)
  • Washington Gateway Main Street, Boston: Neck Ties Event Artwork Donation 2005, 2006, 2011, & 2012
  • SoWa Art Walk, Boston - Founding Member and Art Walk Poster Designer for 2004, 2005

Education

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XTOS.NET
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