Září 2012

- - - ILLIADYSSEY - - - Pozvánka na výstavu, Řecko, Kréta, Galerie Xotaris/ Invitation for the Exhibition, Greece, Crete, Xotaris Art Forum

2. září 2012 v 17:20 Grafika




Exhibition of Engravings and Ex Libris
"Behold a Miracle"
By XOTARIS ART FORUM Gallery
Opening: Thursday 6 September 2012, at 20:30
Michael Cacoyannis Foundation

On Thursday, 6th September at 20.30, XOTARIS ART FORUM gallery under the auspices of the Foundation "Panagiotis Giannakos" inaugurate a thematic engraving exhibition from all over the world inspired by the homeric epics in Michael Cacoyannis Foundation, in Athens.
Homer attributes virtues and passions such as beauty, power, bravery, cunning, pain or fearlessness to both groups of fighters, Greek and Trojans. It counts for little whether they are Greeks or Trojans, defenders or attackers. Just like the traveler who stands opposite the imaginary or not problems and difficulties that time and Gods send him. Just like contrasts in mountain Olympus where every God has his own favored. Every outcome stands for an allegory: Ulysses washed up in Ithaca; you reach the end pure, but alone, unescorted. Hector lies on the bloody sand rousing the sorrow and the respect of his enemies. The poet of oral tradition narrates and recounts. He sets questions hidden in images of beauty and violence; in battles and compromises; in human hugs and abductions; in visions and fierce battles.
This magic speech that has lived all along and shall live for ever and ever, inspired thousands of artists all over centuries. In this exhibition a group of engravers, like the traveling troupes of other times, manages to express in a unique way plenty of images taken in Homer's magic words. A small troupe gathered in the valley of Arhanai in Crete from all over the world in order to lay before Xotaris, on his demand, a small treasure of images. Julian Jordanov, Hristo Naidenov, Eduard Penkov, Peter Lazarov, Peter Velikov, Hristo Kerin, Robert Baramov, Vladislav Kvartalny, Eugenia Timoshenko, Jurij Jakovenko, Roman Sustov, Chen Hao, Chen Xiaofeng, Jan Cernos, Oldrich Kulhanek, Peter Minka, Hanna Glowacka, Ruslan Agirba, Konstantin Antioukhin, Sergey Ivanov, Sergey Hrapov, Vasyl Fenchak, Marius Liugaila, Alexandra von Hellberg, Hedwig Pauwels, Maria Noble Schukina, Natalija Cernecova, Ichibun Sugimoto, Μίλτος Πεταλάς, Φλοράνς Χρηστάκη, Λεωνίδας Γιαννακόπουλος, Μιχαήλ Φαλκώνης. Many other shall follow as new engravers appear all over the world - in Greece, China, Japan, Bulgaria, Poland, Italy, France, Germany, Belgium, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, Russia, Belarus, Czech Republic, Slovenia.

The first thematic exhibition was held in Arhanai of Crete. The tour starts in Athens, in Michael Cacoyannis Foundation. Like an artistic Argo, in March it will stop in Belgrade, in the Academy of Fine Arts, and after that in the municipality of Bodio Lomnago, a small town in Varese of Italy. This same year, it shall travel to Minsk, Belarus and St. Petersburg, Russia. May this exhibition have a nice trip with new artists and new works.

The Xotaris Gallery is a cultural place where modern engraving works are exhibited from all over the world, painted etchings, miniatures and also etchings and ex-libris of the last century. Also works by great engravers such as Albin Brunovsky, Oldrich Kulhanek, Frans von Bayros a.o. as well as sketches, watercolors and limited edition books. The collection which is considered as one of the most important in Europe, belongs to the family of Eva and Chris Giannakos, whose sole purpose is to present it to the public, highlighting the art of engraving and ex-Libris in Greece.

The collection is housed in a restored 1870 mansion, just as Chris Giannakos dreamed it. Just like a modern xotaris, after having traveled all around the world, in bazaars, galleries, art workshops, he decided to open this unique collection to public.
XOTARIS gallery is open as an exhibition center as well for personal or group artistic exhibitions, workshops or other events.
Xotaris gallery and the Cultural Foundation Panagiotis Giannakos organize the international Biennale under the title "Ancient Greek Tragedy", which shall be announced next year. An international congress on Ex Libris and Engravings will be held with the participation of artists and collectors from all over the world in June 2015 in cooperation with the city of Bodio Lomnago of Varese in Italy, where an international Ex Libris and Engravings congress will be held in 2014.

ἐν δ᾽ ἱστοὶ λίθεοι περιμήκεες,
ἔνθα τε νύμφαι φάρε᾽ ὑφαίνουσιν ἁλιπόρφυρα,
θαῦμα ἰδέσθαι·
ἐν δ᾽ ὕδατ᾽ ἀενάοντα.
ΟΜΗΡΟΥ ΟΔΥΣΣΕΙΑ ραψωδία ιγ' (ν) 107-109

The cave has long stone looms where nymphs weave cloth with a deep sea-purple dye, an amazing thing to see

Homer Odyssey, Book XIII 107-109

You are invited to the opening of the exhibition "Behold a miracle" held by XOTARIS ART FORUM presented for the first time in Athens, in Michael Cacoyannis Foundation on Thursday September 6th at 20:30. The exhibition shall remain open until September 30th.


For the Cultural Foundation Panagiotis Giannakos
Eva and Christos Giannakos

ILIADYSSEY

Homer attributes virtues and passions such as beauty, power, bravery, cunning, pain or fearlessness to both groups of fighters, Greek and Trojans. It counts for little whether they are Greeks or Trojans, defenders or attackers. Just like the traveler who stands opposite the imaginary or not problems and difficulties that time and Gods send him. Just like contrasts in mountain Olympus where every God has his own favored. Every outcome stands for an allegory: Odysseus washed up in Ithaca; you reach the end pure, but alone, unescorted. Hector lies on the bloody sand rousing the sorrow and the respect of his enemies. The poet of oral tradition narrates and recounts. He sets questions hidden in images of beauty and violence; in battles and compromises; in human hugs and abductions; in visions and fierce battles.

This magic word that has lived all along and shall live for ever and ever, inspired thousands of artists all over centuries. In this exhibition a group of engravers, like the traveling troupes of other times, manages to express in a unique way plenty of images taken in Homer's magic words. A small troupe gathered in the valley of Archanes in Crete from all over the world in order to lay before Xotaris, on his demand, a small treasure of images. Julian Jordanov, Hristo Naidenov, Eduard Penkov, Peter Lazarov, Peter Velikov, Hristo Kerin, Robert Baramov, Vladislav Kvartalny, Eugenia Timoshenko, Jurij Jakovenko, Roman Sustov, Chen Hao, Chen Xiaofeng, Jan Cernos, Oldrich Kulhanek, Peter Minka, Hanna Glowacka, Ruslan Agirba, Paolo Rovegno, Sergey Ivanov, Sergey Hrapov, Vasyl Fenchak, Marius Liugaila, Alexandra von Hellberg, Hedwig Pauwels, Ella Tsyplyakova, Ichibun Sugimoto, Panos Paloglou, Miltos Petalas, Florence Christakis, Leonidas Giannakopoulos, Michael Falkonis. Many other shall follow as new engravers appear all over the world - in Greece, China, Japan, Bulgaria, Poland, Italy, France, Germany, Belgium, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, Russia, Belarus, Czech Republic, Slovenia.

The first thematic exhibition was held in Archanes of Crete. The tour starts in Athens, in Michael Cacoyannis Foundation. Like an artistic Argo, in March it will stop in Belgrade, in the Academy of Fine Arts, and after that in the municipality of Bodio Lomnago, a small town in Varese of Italy. This same year, it shall travel to Minsk, Belarus and St. Petersburg, Russia. May this exhibition have a nice trip with new artists and new works.


The paradox of Homer's Helen
Helen, the culprit. The myth as we learnt it at school three thousand two hundred years later, the myth as heard by hundreds of thousands of warriors and citizens in ancient Greek cities sitting round their fires before it had even been put down in writing, the myth that gathered thousands of Achaeans at Aulis ready to set sail for Troy - this myth lays the blame with Helen for the ten-year war and all its suffering.

But wait. In neither the Iliad nor the Odyssey is judgment made against Helen; she is not charged or prosecuted. Helen is above the law, beyond morality. She is a fact of life, a force of nature. Because she is beautiful! Simply, conclusively, eternally: beautiful.

This supreme praise of beauty will become the legacy of the Homeric epics to all the great stories to follow. Whether she was cause, pretext or phantom - Helen never even went to Troy if we are to believe Euripides' later explanation for her innocence - Menelaus's wife belongs to the chorus of immortal women in the epics who pleat together the rough fabric of one of the grandest war adventures of all time. The woman goddess, wife, mistress, mother, daughter, queen, slave, prophetess, spirit: all the women in the epic poems will always lend themselves as inspiration to Art because they were born at exactly the moment that life, with its infinite motifs and variations, became a narrative, became an epic.


The radiance of the epic poems
Life is beautiful because it does not submit to simplifications and dogma. No pairing of good and evil, heaven and hell, renown and deceit, the living and the inorganic, the mortal and the immortal will ever succeed in telling its story. The great poet of the Iliad and the Odyssey senses this, and teaches it. His Achaeans are only faced with their Trojans by chance - it is not the Greeks against the Barbarians. The idiocy of war strikes them both. And both can be reduced or raised to the level of the other.

History bears him out. As much today as then, the opposition between the two sides of the Aegean is fictitious. The Lydian monarchs are Hellenized and the Ionian Greeks become Lydians. Somewhere between despotism and democracy, every historical time and place has its own rating. Men, cities, empires are destroyed within the very frenzy which might have been the basis of their survival. Life moves in mysterious ways. Within this state of flux, Art develops and this continuous - ars longa - flow is perhaps man's only stability

Homer knows this. And he plays things just as life and its lyre-strings do. The bow and the lyre for the slaughter and song of his heroic fame. The allure of the Sirens' song and the danger that it will imitate the epic. Epic within epic in the scenes of the storytelling before kings and grape pickers. The offering of food as honour to the narrator-hero and as alms to the grape pressing-beggar. Boasts and punishments, primitive reprisals and "divine" justice. He has it all - in motion, in dialogue, in progress. Homer uses his art as a plough to till the soil of the art in each of us.


The awe of the hero and his return
Awe! Those fighting in Homeric armies certainly have a kind of training and experience of war, but how does anyone dare to stand before a Hector, an Achilles, an Ajax? How do the knees of the recruits not buckle in the deafening clash of battle? What god steps in and inoculates the exhausted soldier with power, strength, fortitude, valour and bravery when he has not lain down on a soft mattress for over a decade? How far from madness are the daily ravages of human lives and the pallbearer of companions? What is the person who mounted a steed to steal the "uncloven-hoofed" horses of the Trojans, five hundred years before the first horse riders and the demystification of the fearsome centaurs, made of? And how can this demigod, this - albeit fleeting - protagonist in the great historical event simply return just like that to domestic and provincial concerns? How can he come back to earth without risking destruction, without dangling mid-air or drifting off course, without taking on the metaphysical?

The Iliad narrates man's sensational journey towards the immortality of the hero, and the Odyssey the painful return of the hero to human mortality. The untrodden course leads to the question that will gestate for several centuries in the womb of the two epic poems until it is given birth to as philosophy and raised as never before comprehended science. And meanwhile, and in perpetuity this noble Homeric womb will continue to contract myths with memories of events and people's life stories so as to incubate the fruits of their artistic creativity.