Marlen Karletidou Pantheon Gallery
Nothing but the best
Tell all artists. Take granny and all the children too. Here is such a positive exhibition. The colour of the work is glorious.
The application of materials superb. Brilliant use of every thread, paint, instant idea; as if the works started alive and
still are. The subjects imaginative, positive; filling the gallery with joy and happiness. As if Vincent had had a cheerful
childhood and the sunflowers were there everyday. See the images on this page.
With this glorious exhibition Cyprus painting has switched. No more tears now.
This exhibition continues until the May 30. No excuse.GO.
Nicholas Panayi at Apocalypse
Suddenly Apocalypse Gallery is full of male nudes. And it’s all art.
To celebrate such a tremendous breakthrough the Arts Page has requested a special article.
Dr Antonis Danos has written on “The anxieties of the body: Spirituality and eroticism in Nicholas Panayi’s
“The art (mostly painting) by Nicholas Panayi is anthropocentric, better still, it is somatocentric. The human body,
specifically the nude male body, constitutes the nucleus and framework, as well as the agent of both the formalistic and the
conceptual, thematic and ideological parameters of his art. Yet, in spite of this long, constant negotiation of this theme,
Panayi’s painting has avoided the trap of mannerism and of barren repetition, due to his equally persistent exploration
of form and materials.
Formalistically, the nude human figure - the epicentre of his work - alludes to the ideal, heroic male nude of Classical
Greece and its variations during the Hellenistic era, as well as to the revival of this tradition, both within the Italian
Renaissance and within European Neoclassicism (late 18th – early 19 c.). The male bodies in the works by
Panayi are imbued with the – anatomically and philosophically – ideal proportions of Classical Greek art. At the
same time, however, they manifest, and are subjected to, emotions, expressions, conflicts, passions and, at times, catharsis,
which are not encountered in the Classical era. The quality of ‘noble simplicity and calm grandeur’ of Classical
Greek art, as J.J. Winckelmann would say centuries later, was replaced, in the Hellenistic (and Roman) times, with expressions
of pathos, passion, pain and psycho-emotional tensions. At the same time, the art of these later eras retained, to a degree,
the earlier physical idealisation of the nude male figure. This combination was revived and transformed during both the Italian
Renaissance the Neoclassicism.
This mixture is also encountered in the figures in Panayi’s works, where it functions as the vehicle for the spiritual
and emotional anxieties of the artist, which are also ecumenical: the course from birth to creation and to death; the spiritual
journey from darkness to light; the existential absurdity of the human condition; the metaphysical- religious agony.
The last element, in particular, is reinforced by Panayi’s frequent adoption of the triptych, which alludes to the
corresponding Christian tradition. The triptych arrangement was also
utilised, in many works, by Francis Bacon, one of the most important cases of anthropocentric-somatocentric artists in
the 20thcentury. As in Bacon’s art, the ecumenical anxieties-agonies in the works by Panayi are, before all
else, the artist’s own.
This is particularly apparent in his most recent works, where the struggle of the figures towards light, salvation or truth,
constitutes a visualisation of his own, internal struggle.
The forms that emerge from, or branch out of each other, or that hide within each other, derive from the painter’s
own internal conflicts and anxieties
As far as the technique is concerned, Panayi’s art contains elements and influences from
areas of 20thcentury modern art. His technique derives, on one hand, from mild, post-Impressionistic expressions
in the early 20thcentury, and on the other, from Expressionist painting’s revival in the 1980s. His persistence,
however, with the idealised, ’heroic’. nude male figure keeps his art at a distance from the more angst-ridden,
deformed renderings of the above expressions, referring us, instead, to the older traditions of Neoclassicism, of Italian
Renaissance, and of Hellenistic art.
It is precisely this relation in his work that brings me, in conclusion, to another important element in his pictures:
eroticism. The erotic element was the main characteristic of the human figure, especially, the nude male body, both in the
calm-grandiose, idealised forms of Classical Greek art, as well as in its more expressive variations in the Hellenistic era.
It was also a strong element in the Renaissance revival and development of the ancient tradition, despite the now-added Christian
element (greatest example, perhaps, Michaelangelo’s art), and in Antiquity’s re-invention in European Neoclassicism
This very eroticism imbues many of the paintings by Nicholas Panayi: an eroticism which is both spiritual and physical,
which is as much ideal and perennial, as it is tangible and contemporary”.
Alexandros Michaelides Gloria Gallery
What a dazzling week? And now for something completely different. And very, very new. Alexandros was born in Oxford in
1983 and was brought up in Cyprus and for his young years had achieved a great deal. Gloria’s was packed for his opening.
He remarks that he aims to combine diverse elements and techniques in order to create homogeneous compositions. To this purpose,
he uses geometric architectural shapes, organic forms and strong colours.
There is enough imagination and talent in this exhibition by Alexandros to knock many of our other exhibitions sideways.
What imagination. Full of ideas. The town is collecting again. Cyprus art continues. Bravo.
Hope you caught up with De Profundis last night at Larnaca. Also Maria Tourou at Gonia. Ioanna Phillipou, and Souvenir
of Kyrenia, in Nicosia.