Monday 20 May 2019

Demosthenis Skoulakis - A Retrospective: Portraits and Underground Routes

Demosthenis Skoulakis, A Retrospective: Portraits and Underground Routes

at the Benaki Museum, Pireos Avenue, Athens.


'By the end of 1984, my story with alcohol is over. It took four hard years and a tough detoxification struggle to stand back on my feet. It is no accident that by cutting out the drink, I gradually began to love myself and others. It was then that the portraits were born. The return from alcoholism to the self-esteem  of detoxification, resembles the return from dark to light. I work with amazing intensity. My work is evolving rapidly. Every day I stop painting only when my feet no longer support me... From Moralis I learned to see the essence of painting, beyond the trends, effects, useless textures and great peaks. 'The more significant a painting, the more likely it is made with the simplest means', he said and gave Rembrandt or Cezanne as an example'.

My Own Athina, 1988, (oil on canvas)

Comrade Alexis No. II, 1986, (oil on canvas)

The Young Killer, 1986, (oil on canvas)

Athina, 1986, (oil on canvas)

Self-Portrait, 1990, (oil on canvas)

The Painter, 1989, (oil on canvas)

The Teacher, Yannis Moralis, 1990-92, (oil on canvas)

The Transparency of Age, 1988, (oil on canvas)

Actors, 1985, (oil on canvas)

Actress with Scarred Face, 1990, (oil on canvas)

The Dancer, 1991, (oil on canvas)

The Dancer, 1991, (oil on canvas and nickel)

Yannis Tsarouhis, 1989, (oil on canvas)

The Hands of Yannis Tsarouchis, 1989, (oil on canvas)

Yannis Tsarouchis in the Neon Café, 1989, (oil on canvas)

Homage to Yannis Tsarouhis, 1982, (oil on canvas)

Underground Routes:

'In May 1993, a taxi strike forces me to descend the stairs of the 'underground railway'. It had been many years since I used the 'underground' and this descent made me feel like ... Odysseus in Hades. A forgotten, unknown and, at the same time, familiar world was revealed to my eyes. I was surprised at the intense need to paint this 'underworld'.

Within these paintings, the process that every passenger needs to undergo is recorded... During the journey, I record the inner labyrinths of the stations while at the same time emphasizing the intense interchange between light and darkness. Journey, both artistically and symbolically, is internal. It concerns the common destiny of people (death). And, additionally, life'.

Omonia - Waiting, 1997, (oil on canvas)

Omonia - Train Arrival, 1997, (oil on canvas)

Journey - Confinement (Red Door), 1995, (oil on canvas)

Underground - Communication, 1996, (oil on canvas)

Victoria - Train Arrival, 1996-97, (oil on canvas)

Journey - Confinement II, 1994, (oil on canvas)

Monastiraki - Waiting, 1995, (oil on canvas)

Piraeus - Arrival, 1995, (oil on canvas)

Victoria - Stairs, 1996, (oil on canvas)

Victoria - Stairs, 1996, (oil on canvas)

Neo Faliro - Stairs, 1998, (oil on canvas)

Omonia - Copper Door, 1994, (oil on canvas)

Omonia - Maze, 1995, (oil on canvas)

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