Saturday, April 29, 2017

The Magic of memory at the art space “PeriTechnon Karteris”

Greek artist Spyros Lytras will present his new solo exhibition “THE MAGIC OF MEMORY”  (May 5 – June 3) at the art space “PeriTechnon Karteris”, located in the center of Athens (Irodotou str.5, Kolonaki). The opening date is Friday 5th of May at 20:00.
The well-known artist presents a work full of experiential images. The journey, which can be both a point of reconciliation and separation, the destinations, the people, the sea have the leading role in this exhibition that is inspired by memories and pictures of yesterday and today.
Mr. Takis Mavrotas notes:
“In Greek mythology the goddess Mnemosyne, the daughter of Uranus (Heaven) and Gaea (Earth), represented memory. Zeus appeared in the form of a shepherd and lay with her for nine nights in the Pieria Mountains, giving birth to the nine Muses, patronesses of the arts. A few months ago, in his Athens studio, Spyros Lytras showed me his new paintings, a mesmerizing reflection on memory.
The artist told me: “ I draw images from everyday life and conjure stories using paint on canvas. I want all my work to reflect memories and emotions”. In this brightly lit ground-floor studio in the hustle and bustle of a colourful neighborhood full of immigrants from Asia or Afrikca in the city centre, we spent hours looking at his drawings and paintings. For Lytras, each moment encapsulates the past, the present and the futire, confronting the artist with light and darkness, with his thoughts and experiences. He haw chosen to make this labyrinthine city home to his artistic endeavours, although he had other options, being born in the coastal town of Itea, where his beachfront family home on the Corinthian Gulf offers ample opportunities for gazing at the sea of the mountains, Giona and Parnassos. As a child, he used to visit nearby Delphi, the navel of the Earth, this clearly played a key role in his artistic formation, fuelling his aesthetic investigations. It was there that he discovered self-knowledge – humanity’s most important knowledge – and was introduced to the temperance and moderation of classical Greek art. Lytras grew up in a traditional family, with no direct exposure to art. The exception was his uncle, Kostas Nitsos, who urged him, at the young age of sixteen, to meet with the great Greek artists Panagiotis Tetsis and Dimitris Mytaras and ask them whether he had what it took to become an artist. Encouraged by their commendation, he went on to study at the Thessaloniki School of Fine Arts, graduating with honors.
From 2000 to date, Lytras has succinctly articulated his personal, poetic, and contemplative style, going beyond the merely descriptive, narrative and figurative to arrive at his own truth. He incessantly seeks the useful and the indispensable, the undefined and uncharted, going from discovery to discovery, sometimes empirical and sometimes emotive. The muse of his transformative quest, the female figure in central in his paintings, for instance in the imposing triptych Departure, 2017, or his famous Tangos, 2015 – 2017, affectionate scenes evoking a sense of euphoria. They are moreover animated by a shared secret, an understanding of the
hearts, the passion of love, or despair. Love between two individuals, or the haunting noise of the sea become a vehicle for the artist to confront drawing and colour, the adventure of form. Art in general refines our sensitivity. Lytras’s paintings are informed by memory and oblivion, longing and anticipation. His mission is to reveal the beauty and intrinsic value of life. Love and death, the interplay of temporal and timeless desires shape the universe of the visionary designs. He always paints in swift yet controlled, expressionistic gestures, as he acknowledges, never deviating from the bounds of visible reality towards the irrational, or violent distortion. His painting follows a circular path, in an unending dialogue between the past and present. Loving, confessional, his brushwork captures his experiences and sensations. Tirelessly exploring charcoal and acrylics, he seeks sharpness and intensity of charcoal effects in his drawings. Of course, drawing is the backbone and the basis for all his work. Tellingly, since his earliest solo exhibitions, a series of impressive drawings that focus on expressive narrativity and surprising settings has always been at the core of his work.
Lytras thinks in pictorial terms, and his reminiscences evoke his past, becoming traces and manifestations of his visions, deliberately ignoring extreme situations or unpleasant sociopolitical events. He is a profoundly humanistic artist, a sensitive interpreter of love and human experience. His ultimate desire is the emotional truth of his life, a painting of his own, with a distinct rhythm and measure. His visual output is characterized by passion and tenderness, a dynamic line and vibrant motion, a reconstruction of reality as well as imagination. Thus, Lytras’s work reflects the artist’s rigorous pursuit of painting, providing a taste of the artist’s sensual perception of the world – a vigorous affirmation that we are not bereft of time and love for humanity.”

Irodotou str. 5, Kolonaki,
GR 106 74 Athens
Τel. +30 210 8239 465 – email:
Opening: Friday 5th of May, 20:00hrs
Duration: May 5 – June 3 2017
Working hours:
Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 11:00 – 20:00hrs
 Wednesday – Saturday: 11:00 – 14:30hrs
Sunday – Monday: CLOSED


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