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Aegean: Identities + Journeys

About the exhibition

The social and historical reality of today is raising questions and creating acute concerns which we do not fully comprehend or do not comprehend at all. The times we are living through as individuals and as citizens force us to examine issues beyond our experience, and frequently our awareness. In this country, the need for answers, for an analysis, is palpable and increasingly urgent. The transcendent intervention of Art is of the greatest importance.

As an agent in cultural management, Citronne Gallery aims to function as a forum for the exchange of artistic ideas and views. With this in mind, this year we chose a theme, always current, recently enlarged and magnified. The Aegean, our sea, has a long history of life and movement, peace and wars, survival and voyage, work and experience. The exhibition “Aegean: Identities + Journeys” brings together artistic viewpoints on this subject, expressed by nine contemporary artists called upon to provide commentary: Yiannis Adamakos, Michalis Katzourakis, Demosthenis Kokkinidis, Alekos Kyrarinis, Tasos Mantzavinos, Emmanouil Bitsakis, Constantin Xenakis, Sotiris Sorogas, and Jannis Psychopedis.

The artistic works exhibited are accompanied by poems, or extracts of texts, chosen by the artists as an additional representation of reality. At the same time, the poems are independent of the artistic work: that is, they are not the inspiration for the art, but the artists’ stream of conscious commentary on their varied memories and responses to the Aegean. The artistic and the poetic function as a diptych which highlights the crucial significance of the Aegean to the history and the definition of the Greek identity.

Demosthenis Kokkinidis

Demosthenis Kokkinidis
Demosthenis Kokkinidis
June 16, 2007 - July 4, 2007

Virvili Square
18020 Poros Island

(+30) 697 9989 684

Opening Hours
11.00-13.00 & 19.00-23.00

About the artist

1929 - 2020. Demosthenis Kokkinidis was born in Piraeus in 1929. He studied at the Athens School of Fine Arts (1952-1957), with Yannis Moralis and Spyros Papaloukas. He was a founding member of the “Omada Technis Α” group (1962-1967) and the “Association for the Communication and Education through Art” (1976-1981). He was elected professor of the Athens School of Fine Arts (1976) and served as Dean and Associate Dean of the School (1979-1982). He lives and works in Athens.

About the exhibition

Kokkinidis, as a person as well as an artist, is thoughtful, laconic, and essential. His work as well as his thought are characterized by sharp economy of means, verbal or visual. He implies ideas and narratives. His paintings have always provoked different levels of reading, and the work presented in Poros is no exception.

On a first level, what ties this work together thematically is the visual reference - to a greater or lesser degree - to the sea. In his paintings, sea and water become the suggestion of voyage, obtaining a symbolic meaning where the need for decoding is even more intense. The paintings do not refer to the visual reality but are intense mental images of the artist's reflection on both his art and life. As he says, he intended “to demonstrate our primal and enigmatic relationship with the sea; the existential impasse and fear of mortality as well as immobility as a stance for contemplating time.”

Kokkinidis's paintings are not windows to the world but mirrors. They reflect a metaphysical world, in an effort to approach the meta ta physika (“beyond the things of nature”) essence of things.