Saturday, 2 January 2016

Giorgos Spiridonov | A natural talent is growing in our marble yard (VIDEO)

There is a very special sentiment you develop when you are introduced to something from its birth; and the birth of an artist is a fanatically most strong feeling when it comets to sculpture. In the case of Giorgos Spiridonov, both personally but also as a company of people we are all those who work for the Greek Marble Initiative, we have witnessed the born of a gifted sculptor from a keen technician.

To take the things from the start, Giorgos Spiridonov used to be our Technical Assistant, a function he still holds, but its rather diminutive to call him that any longer. He used to be one of us, of the Organization in the Symposiums of the Greek Marble Initiative, but now he is also a sculptor, but not only that. He is a sculptor who found himself here, before our eyes.

Based on an excellent understanding of the material, of stone, of marble, and a vast experience and deep knowledge of the mechanical tools used to chisel marble, he evolved under the influence of great masters we accommodated in our symposium, from all over the world. Jhon Gogaberishvili, Giorgie Cpajak, Edward Fleming, Kamen Tanev  are some of the exceptional people influenced the young man.

Starting off his journey in creation he copied a Cycladic art head. This is an actual finding, situated in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, re-created into yellow softstone.  The next piece is a mighty panther, lying down. Though this is also a copy, we observed a tendency towards abstraction, as several figurative elements are missing on purpose. “The column” is a dive into the comprehension of modern art; more abstraction is evident while no figurative elements are pursued. As the artist Giorgos Spiridonov confessed to us it is a depiction of the spiritual elements of the universe as they transform into various energies. “The machine” series depicted as various gears was the result of a process of creating an environment of elements. One can find gears in every corner or place all around the field where the symposium is taking place. Geometry gained on the vital place the abstraction left in his creations.  A huge human head, straying in style into the borderline between the Easter Islands giants and the Soviet era political monuments, bearing an influence mark of Georgie Cpajak with whom the young technician has being working along for sometime. It is a solid, vigorous, though somewhat wounded by time and elements of the Nature head, made in a quite banged stone. The archaic figure does  not constitute a backward movement for Giorgos Spiridonov, but it is rather a first glimpse of his forthcoming choices.

Now Spiridonov works in complete series he wishes to create. The obscure figures he creates now seem objects found in an archaeological excavation. Merging features found in Ancient Cyprus sculpture with Greek characteristics and a flair of far east dead empires as the Sumerians were, he wishes to put together the classic Mediterranean civilizations, to create new forms: his very own.

Let us add some visual experience to what we are talking about (watch the video):

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Odysseas Tosounidis | Elective affinities with the universe

In the context of our redesign of this blog these days we are releasing previously unreleased footage and concentrate photography we have released in various sources and forms in slideshows. These slideshows, apart from being published, the dates they are created, can be found in the newly founded category "More action please!" you can find in "Gallery" menu. If you require any footage of the Initiative, we will be available to provide you, free of charge, both photos and video in any format. Contact the Greek Marble Initiative co-ordinator Mr. Paris Kapralos for any information you may require.

Odysseas Tosounidis is one of the sculptors that stayed for the longer time with us. If I should speak for a dinstinct characteristic of Odysseas this would be patience and hard work. Although most of the marble sculptors are patient people, Odysseas sets a new standard. He has created as many pieces as others, but, despite the fact that he is in no way slower than the other sculptors who participated in the Initiative’s Summer 2013 Symposium, but in 5 months time! So what’s the catch, yoy may wonder... Odysseas sets a dialogue with the material -will it be granite or marble doesn’t matter, he tames it slowly to become his image his fantasy creates. All his works mirror the hardship of being as well as the balance of the universe. His first, the  “Womb”, given birth from a vast and massive, hard-and-tough black marble stone, which we were able to move only with the use  of a huge crane of heavy objects, almost 2 by 2 by 1 meters, claimed that he worked from early morning to late at night for almost 2 months to get it done the exact way he wanted every scar to be incised! The result of course is a powerfull and magnificent piece, one of the best he has ever done!

"Without being interested in the figurativeness of the form but in the emotion that the sculpture provokes in its whole viewing, he moves between tradition – with references to greek antiquity- and modernism of Henry Moore and of Constantin Brancusi. He works with all material, such as metal, wood, marble, granite which, each time, he studies in depth because he believes that the artist should respect and know very well his material. He is charmed by the sparkling of the light on the material that is why he pays special attention to the creation of the form. In particular in his smaller scale sculptures the intense polishing of the marble and the immaculate technique of carving it, create an impression of continuity with the surrounding space, while thematically he is inspired by the natural world as well as by the human figure. A different technical approach has been followed in monumental sculptures, such as the “Dryads”. It is a complex with symbolic character, whose name was inspired by the rustling of the leaves which the artist heard while carving during the night. Dryads in greek mythology were Nymphs of the forests and of nature in general, while they symbolized the anthropomorphic idea of sounds of nature that disrupt the quietness especially in mountains, caves, streams, gorges, springs. Dryads are represented as two figures that seem to converse with each other.