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Ôáîßäé óôï ÊÝíôñï ôïõ Åãþ

ÊÅÉÌÅÍÏ: ÌÁÑÈÁ ×ÁËÉÊÉÁ

«ÆùÞ ’íáé öåõãáëÝá óêéÜ, öôù÷üò èåáôñßíïò, ðïõ ìå óôüìöï ôñþåé ôçí þñá ôïõ ’ðá óôç óêçíÞ êáé ðéá äåí îáíáêïýãåôáé· Ýíá ðáñáìýèé ðïõ ëÝåé Ýíáò çëßèéïò üëï á÷ü êáé ðÜèïò ÷ùñßò êáíÝíá íüçìá». ÐñÜîç Å´– ÓêçíÞ 5 William Shakespeare, ÌÜêìðåè Ìôöñ : Âáóßëç Ñþôá

ÁíÞóõ÷ï ðíåýìá ìå ðïëëÝò äñáóôçñéüôçôåò êáé åììïíÝò, óå ðïëéôéêü, êáëëéôå÷íéêü Þ áéóèç(ìá)ôéêü åðßðåäï, åñåõíÜ êáé óõììåôÝ÷åé ãéá íá áíáêáëýøåé, íá áìöéóâçôÞóåé, íá åíôá÷èåß. Ãüíïò ìåóïáóôéêÞò ïéêïãÝíåéáò, ï ÄçìïóèÝíçò ÓêïõëÜêçò, ìå êáôáãùãÞ áðü ôá ×áíéÜ, ãåííÞèçêå óôçí ÁèÞíá ôï 1939 êáé Ýæçóå óôç óõíïéêßá ÊõðñéÜäïõ (ðëáôåßá ÐáðáäéáìÜíôç) óôá ÐáôÞóéá. ÌåãÜëùóå êïíôÜ óå Ýíá ðëïýóéï êáëëéôå÷íéêü ðåñßãõñï ìå ðïéêßëåò ðñþôåò áíáöïñÝò êáé áéóèçôéêÝò ðñïêëÞóåéò: ÄçìÞôñçò Ðéêéþíçò, Óðýñïò ÐáðáëïõêÜò, Öþôçò Êüíôïãëïõ, Ãéþñãïò êáé ÅëÝíç Âáêáëü, ÏõìâÝñôïò Áñãõñüò, Ìßêçò ÌáôóÜêçò åßíáé ìåñéêÝò áðü ôéò óõíáíáóôñïöÝò ôïõ. Ðñüêëçóç: Ìéá ðñþôç ëÝîç–êëåéäß ãéá ôéò áñ÷éêÝò æùãñáöéêÝò ôïõ áðüðåéñåò. «Ç öÞìç ôïõò óýíôïìá Üñ÷éóå íá åîÜðôåé ôç öáíôáóßá êáé ôçí ðåñéÝñãåéÜ ìïõ. Ìå ôï èñÜóïò êáé ôçí áöÝëåéá ôçò çëéêßáò, ÷ùñßò ðïëëÜ–ðïëëÜ åéóÝâáëá óôá áôåëéÝ êáé ôá åñãáóôÞñéÜ ôïõò, ìå ôçí åõêïëßá ðïõ ìïõ Ýäéíå ç öéëßá ìå ôá óõíïìÞëéêá ðáéäéÜ ôïõò». ¸ôóé Üñ÷éóå ç ðåñéóôáóéáêÞ ôïõ ìáèçôåßá êïíôÜ óôïõò Öþôç Êüíôïãëïõ êáé Óðýñï ÐáðáëïõêÜ. Ìéêñüâéï: ÊÜèå ìïíïêýôôáñïò ïñãáíéóìüò ðïõ ðñïêáëåß æõìþóåéò Þ ìïëõóìáôéêÝò áññþóôéåò. Ìéá äåýôåñç ëÝîç–êëåéäß ãéá ôï ïñéóôéêü ôïõ äÝóéìï ìå ôç æùãñáöéêÞ (üóï ðáñÜäïîï êé áí áêïýãåôáé). Óôçí ðåñßðôùóç

Journey to the Centre of Ego

TEXT BY MARTHA CHALIKIA

"Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more. It is a tale Told by an idiot, Full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing". William Shakespeare, Macbeth : V.5

A restless spirit with many activities and obsessions on a political, artistic or emotional level, he researches and participates in order to discover, to question, to join causes. The son of a middle–class family with roots from Chania, Crete, Demosthenis Skoulakis was born in 1939 in the Athenian district of Kypriadou. He grew up in a rich artistic environment which gave him many early references and aesthetic stimuli: Dimitris Pikionis, Spiros Papaloukas, Fotis Kontoglou, Yorgos and Eleni Vakalo, Oumvertos Argyros and Mikis Matsakis were among his neighbours. Challenge: a first key–word to describe his early attempts in painting. "Their fame soon began to excite my imagination and my curiosity. As a friend of their children in my age, I would unceremoniously invade their studios". This was the beginning of his intermittent apprenticeship under Fotis Kontoglou and Spiros Papaloukas. Virus: A unicellular organism which causes fermentation or infectious diseases. A second key–word about his ultimate involvement with painting, strange as it sounds. Yet in the case of Demosthenes p. 010 _


1957, Ðáñßóé, Paris

Áõôïðñïóùðïãñáößá, Self-portrait 1960, ëÜäé óå êáìâÜ åðéêïëëçìÝíï óå ÷áñôüíé, oil on canvas mounted on cardboard, 25x18 cm

Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 011


Äñüìïò óôç ÌïíìÜñôñç, Street at Monmartre 1958, ëÜäé óå êáìâÜ, oil on canvas, 61x64 cm óõëëïãÞ Ê. ÓÝôôá, K. Setta collection

¸ðåéôá áðü ôéò ðñþôåò ôïõ äéäá÷Ýò êïíôÜ óôïí Êüíôïãëïõ, ùò ìáèçôåõüìåíïò áãéïãñÜöïò –ìå ôïí ïðïßï Þñèå üìùò óýíôïìá óå êüíôñá ëüãù ôùí «Üãñéùí ÷ôõðçìÜôùí» ðïõ äå÷üôáí ï éäåáëéóìüò ôïõ– êáé ôïí ÐáðáëïõêÜ –ï ïðïßïò Ýèåóå ôéò âÜóåéò ôçò æùãñáöéêÞò ìÝóù ôïõ ó÷åäßïõ, ìõþíôáò ôïí óôéò ó÷Ýóåéò êáé ôéò áíáëïãßåò ôùí ÷ñùìÜôùí, ôùí ó÷çìÜôùí êáé ôùí ôüíùí–, áêïëïõèåß ìéá ðñþôç öõãÞ áðü ôçí ðñáãìáôéêüôçôá –ðïõ Þäç áðÝññéðôå– ôáîéäåýïíôáò óôï Ðáñßóé, ôçí ðñþôç ðüëç ðïõ åß÷å ïíåéñåõèåß. Åêåß Ýñ÷åôáé óå åðáöÞ ìå ôïí åëëçíéêü êýêëï äéáíïïõìÝíùí êáé êáëëéôå÷íþí: ÈáíÜóçò Ôóßãêïò, ÃêáíÜò, Ìßíïò ÁñãõñÜêçò, ÁëÝîçò ÁêñéèÜêçò. Õéïèåôåß ôçí åðáíáóôáôéêÞ êáé ðåñéèùñéáêÞ áýñá ôïõ Ðáñéóéïý ðéï ðïëý áðü áéóèçôéêÞ ðëåõñÜ ðáñÜ áðü ðñáãìáôéêÞ áíÜãêç. «ÕéïèÝôçóá ôï êáôÜëëçëï óôõë à la Modigliani, ìå óçêùìÝíïõò ãéáêÜäåò, ìðëáæÝ ýöïò êáé ðïôü». ÄáíäÞò ëïéðüí êáé öõãÜò, áñÝóêåôáé óôï íá ðáñáêïëïõèåß ôïí åáõôü ôïõ íá åéó÷ùñåß óå ñüëï ðñùôáãùíéóôÞ êáé êáôáñáìÝíïõ êáëëéôÝ÷íç. «Ôï Ýðáéæá êáôáñáìÝíïò, un artiste maudit!» Ëßãï áñãüôåñá ï ÈáíÜóçò Ôóßãêïò ôïí óõìâïõëåýåé íá åðéóôñÝøåé óôçí ÁèÞíá. ¼ëá Ýäåé÷íáí ðùò äåí Þôáí Ýôïéìïò áêüìá íá áíáêáëýøåé ôéò ðñáãìáôéêÝò áîßåò áõôÞò ôçò õðÝñï÷çò ðñùôåýïõóáò. Áðü åêåßíç ôçí åðï÷Þ, ìáæß ìå ôéò áíáìíÞóåéò, óþèçêå ìüíïí Ýíáò ðßíáêáò êáé ç óõíÞèåéá íá óõíïäåýåé ôç ìïíáîéÜ ôïõ ìå áëêïüë.

and see things" 2. "Each visit to Aunt Katina's was like an ascent to heaven. I roamed the endless rooms and spent hours looking at the works of the best–known painters of the time. I wondered if I would be able at some time to paint as beautifully as Maleas, Roilos, Vitsoris or Parthenis". So it all started exactly the way it should. After his first lessons as an apprentice religious–icon painter under Kontoglou –with whom he soon clashed because of the "savage blows" to his idealism– and Papaloukas –who set the foundations of painting via drawing and initiated him to the relations and the proportions of colour, shape and tones– he attempted a first flight away from a reality he had already rejected and went to Paris, the first city he had dreamed of. In Paris he comes into contact with the Greek circle of intellectuals and artists: Thanassis Tsingos, Ganas, Minos Argyrakis, Alexis Akrithakis. He adopts the city's revolutionary and marginal aura, as an aesthetic rather than out of a genuine need. "I adopted the proper style à la Modigliani, complete with raised lapels, a blase’ attitude and drinking". A dandy and a fugitive, he likes to watch himself going into the role of protagonist and rebel artist. "I played at being un artiste maudit!". Shortly afterwards Thanassis Tsingos advises him to go back to Athens. All indications pointed to the fact that he was not ready to discover the true values of that wondrous capital. The only relics from that time, apart from his memories, were one painting and the habit of accompanying his solitude with alcohol. So he returns to Greece, rents a two–room apartment with the aid of Aunt Katina and works as stage painter for the Rontiris Theatre in Piraeus. In the afternoons he takes drawing lessons at p. 016 _


1963, ¸ëãêá Êáââáäßá, ÄçìïóèÝíçò ÓêïõëÜêçò, Elga Kavadia, Demosthenis Skoulakis

Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 017


Book of life 1970-1971, åéêïíïãñÜöçóç, Ëïíäßíï, illustration, London Opus dei 1970, åéêïíïãñÜöçóç ãéá ôïõò Sunday Times, Ëïíäßíï, illustration for the Sunday Times newspaper, London

p. 022 _


Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 023


Ôï ÐÜíèåïí ôùí Ìïñöþí Ç åéêüíá ôïõ åáõôïý ìáò åßíáé ðÜíôá áõôÞ êÜðïéïõ Üëëïõ Óôï ðÝñáóìá ôùí ÷ñüíùí åßíáé ðïëëÜ êáé ëáìðñÜ ôá ðáñáäåßãìáôá ðïõ ç éóôïñßá ôçò æùãñáöéêÞò ðñüôåéíå êáé åîåñåýíçóå ôï ìõóôÞñéï ôïõ âëÝììáôïò, ôçò øõ÷éêÞò êáé ðíåõìáôéêÞò êáôÜóôáóçò ôïõ áíèñþðïõ, ìÝóù åíüò ðïñôñÝôïõ. Áðü ôá ìåôáöõóéêÜ Öáãéïýì, ôï ÂõæÜíôéï ìå ôéò áõóôçñÝò ìåôùðéêÝò ìïñöÝò, ôçí ÁíáãÝííçóç ôçò ïõìáíéóôéêÞò èåþñçóçò ôùí ðñáãìÜôùí êáé ôïõò óïöïýò åêöñáóôÝò ôçò (Giotto, Pierro della Fransesca, Michelangelo), ìÝ÷ñé ôïí 20ü áéþíá êáé ôçí áñ÷Þ ôçò áðïäüìçóçò ôçò ìïñöÞò áðü ôïí Picasso, êáèþò êáé ôïõò Kieffer, Bazelitz, Richter, Bacon, êáé Warhol, ôï ðïñôñÝôï âñßóêåôáé óôï êÝíôñï ôïõ åíäéáöÝñïíôïò êáé ôçò ðïëåìéêÞò. Áðü ôç óôáôéêüôçôá êáé ôç ñáóéïíáëéóôéêÞ áíáðáñÜóôáóÞ ôïõ ùò ôç ìåãáëýôåñç åëåõèåñßá ðñïóùðéêÞò Ýêöñáóçò, áðü ôçí áðüëõôç êõñéáñ÷ßá ôçò áñ÷éôåêôïíéêÞò óêÝøçò ìÝ÷ñé ôçí Üêñáôç åóùôåñéêüôçôá êáé ôçí áðüäïóç øõ÷ïëïãéêþí ÷áñáêôçñéóôéêþí, ç ðñïóùðïãñáößá êáôåß÷å ðÜíôïôå ðñùôáñ÷éêÞ èÝóç. Óôçí éóôïñßá, ôá ðéï ôñáíôá÷ôÜ ðáñáäåßãìáôá êáëëéôå÷íþí ðïõ êáôÝãñáøáí ðåñéóóüôåñï áðü Üëëïõò ôá ðïñôñÝôá ôïõò –üðùò ïé Rembrand, Durer, Van Gogh, Ce’zanne, Soutine, Corinth, Giacometti, Kokoschka, Bacon–, åðé÷åßñçóáí ìå äéáöïñåôéêÝò óõíéóôáìÝíåò íá åðéêïéíùíÞóïõí ìå ôïí åáõôü ôïõò, ôï èåáôÞ, ôçí õóôåñïöçìßá. Áíôëïýóáí áðü ôï óêïôÜäé ôçò øõ÷Þò ôïõò áõôü ðïõ ïé Üëëïé áãíïïýóáí.

«Åãþ åßìáé Ýíáò Üëëïò», Ýãñáöå ï Arthur Rimbaud óôéò 15 ÌáÀïõ ôïõ 1871 óå ìéá åðéóôïëÞ ôïõ ðñïò ôïí Paul Demeny, êáôáñãþíôáò Ýôóé ôçí êëáóéêÞ áíôßëçøç ôïõ õðïêåéìÝíïõ ùò ðüëïõ ôáõôüôçôáò. Ï êáëëéôÝ÷íçò äåí Ý÷åé ðéá ôç äõíáôüôçôá íá åëÝã÷åé ôïí åáõôü ôïõ. Ôï Ýñãï áíáäýåôáé áðü ôá âÜèç ôçò øõ÷Þò ôïõ êáé áðïêôÜ ôçí ïíôüôçôá ðïõ äéêáéïýôáé. Ç ó÷Ýóç ôïõ êáëëéôÝ÷íç ìå ôï åãþ êáé, ùò åê ôïýôïõ, ìå ôïõò Üëëïõò ïöåßëåé íá åðáíáðñïóäéïñéóôåß óôï âáèìü ðïõ ç åêêüëáøç ôçò óêÝøçò áðïôåëåß ìéá áõôüíïìç äéåñãáóßá.

The Pantheon of Forms The image of the self is always that of someone else There are many brilliant examples in the course of art history where painting has explored the mystery of the gaze, of man's mental and spiritual condition, through portraits. From the metaphysical Fayum portraits to the austere frontal figures of the Byzantium, to Renaissance with the humanistic view of things and its sage exponents (Giotto, Pierro della Fransesca, Michelangelo) and to the 20th century and the beginning of the deconstruction of forms by Picasso and then by Kieffer, Bazelitz, Richter, Bacon and Warhol, the portrait has been at the core of the interest and the debate. From the static, rationalist representation to the greatest freedom of personal expression, from the dominance of architectural thought to unbridled innerness and the rendering of psychological traits, portraiture has always held a prominent position. The most striking historical examples of artists who worked more than others on portraits –Rembrandt, Durer, Van Gogh, Ce’zanne, Soutine, Corinth, Giacometti, Kokoschka, Bacon– used different approaches to communicate with their self, their viewers and their reputation, drawing from the darkness of their soul what others ignored.

"I am another", wrote Arthur Rimbaud on May 15, 1871 in a letter to Paul Demeny, thus subverting the classic perception of the self as the hub of identity. The artist is no longer able to control his self. The work emerges from the depths of his soul and acquires the entity it deserves. The artist's relationship with the ego and hence with the others must be redefined inasmuch as the gestation of thought is an autonomous process. p. 034 _


Ç ÁèçíÜ, Athena 1986, ëÜäé óå êáìâÜ, oil on canvas, 100x73 cm, óõëëïãÞ Ìïõóåßïõ Öñõóßñá, Frissiras Museum collection

Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 035


Åßíáé èõìùìÝíïò ôï ðñüóùðü ôïõ öïõóêþíåé – óáí íá âãáßíåé Ýíá öåããÜñé áðü ìáýñï öùò ðïõ óðáóìùäéêÜ óêïôåéíéÜæåé, óáí ç æùÞ íá Þôáí ìáýñç. […] Åßíáé ìáýñç Åßíáé áíïé÷ôÞ ôñýðá ôñüìïõ, ôïõ ôßðïôå óáí íá ìçí õðÜñ÷åé áñêåôü ôßðïôå. ¸íáò ëÜêêïò ðïõ ôïí áíáãíùñßæåé, ôïõ åßíáé ïéêåßïò, âëÝðåé ôç ÷ñçóéìüôçôá ìéáò ôñýðáò üôáí åßíáé ïñãéóìÝíïò êáé ôç ãåìßæåé ìå ôïí åáõôü ôïõ…5

He is angry His face grows As if a moon grows Of black light Compulsively darkening As if life grew black. […] It is black. It is an open Hole of horror, of Nothing as if not enough There is nothing. A pit Which he recognizes, Familiar, sees The use in a hole For anger And fills it with himself...5

p. 038 _


Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 039


Ðñïò ôïí ÐåéñáéÜ, Towards Piraeus 1996, ëÜäé óå êáìâÜ, oil on canvas, 100x75 cm éäéùôéêÞ óõëëïãÞ, Ëïíäßíï, private collection, London

ÓôÜóç óôï ÔÝëïò ôçò Íý÷ôáò Ìéá Üëëç óåéñÜ Ýñãùí ìå ôßôëï Õðüãåéïò Óéäçñüäñïìïò, ðïõ ðáñïõóéÜóôçêå óôçí Aßèïõóá ÔÝ÷íçò Áèçíþí ôï 1995, êáé áñãüôåñá óôç ãêáëåñß Wigmore Fine Art óôï Ëïíäßíï, ïäçãåß ôïí êáëëéôÝ÷íç óôçí åðéëïãÞ öáéíïìåíéêÞò áðïõóßáò ôïõ áíèñþðïõ. Ôï ðÝñáóìá áðü ôïí åðÜíù óôïí õðüãåéï êüóìï, ìðïñåß íá ðñïÝñ÷åôáé áðü Ýíá ôõ÷áßï ðåñéóôáôéêü, üìùò ç äéÜóôáóç êáé ôï ýöïò áðïäåéêíýïõí ôç èåìáôéêÞ êáé õöïëïãéêÞ óõíÝðåéá ôïõ êáëëéôÝ÷íç. «Ôï ÌÜéï ôïõ ’93, ìéá áðåñãßá ôáîß ìå áíáãêÜæåé íá êáôÝâù óôéò óêÜëåò ôïõ óéäçñüäñïìïõ. Åß÷á ðïëëÜ ÷ñüíéá íá ÷ñçóéìïðïéÞóù ôïí “õðüãåéï” êáé áõôÞ ç êáôÜâáóç ìå Ýêáíå íá áéóèáíèþ óáí ôïí ÏäõóóÝá óôïí ¢äç. Óôá ìÜôéá ìïõ áðïêáëýöèçêå Ýíáò êüóìïò îå÷áóìÝíïò, Üãíùóôïò êáé óõíÜìá ïéêåßïò». Ôïí êÜôù êüóìï ôïí Þîåñå áðü ðñþôï ÷Ýñé. Åß÷å ðéÜóåé ðÜôï óôç æùÞ ôïõ êáé Ýôóé åêôéìïýóå ðåñéóóüôåñï ôçí åðéöÜíåéá. ¹îåñå ôç óéùðÞ ôïõ âõèïý ðïõ ðáñáìïñöþíåé ôïõò Þ÷ïõò êáé áõîÜíåé ôéò áéóèÞóåéò. Äå öïâÞèçêå íá ôóáëáêùèåß êáé íá áíáóôçèåß óôç óõíÝ÷åéá. Ãíþñéóå ôçí êüëáóç êáé ôï óêïôÜäé. Ç óïõñåáëéóôéêÞ ôïõ ðåñßïäïò (1986–1990) ßóùò êáé íá åßíáé áõôÞ ðïõ áíáäåéêíýåé ôç óõãêåêñéìÝíç ðëåõñÜ êáëýôåñá áðü üëåò. Ôçí áðÝñáíôç äçëáäÞ óéùðÞ, ôï óôáìÜôçìá ôïõ ÷ñüíïõ, ôçí áðïìüíùóç ôïõ Þ÷ïõ. Ôçí ðñïóðÜèåéá åöáñìïãÞò ôÜîçò êáé éóïññïðßáò óå ôïðßá êáèçìåñéíïý ðáñáëüãïõ. Óôç óåéñÜ ôïõ Yðüãåéïõ êáôáãñÜöïíôáé êáèçìåñéíÝò åðáíáëáìâáíüìåíåò óêçíÝò: åßóïäïò, Ýîïäïò, äéáäñïìÝò, åðéëïãÞ êáôåõèýíóåùí, õðüãåéá äéáöõãÞ. ÌÞðùò ðñüêåéôáé ãéá ìéá ðåñéãñáöÞ ôçò ßäéáò ìáò ôçò æùÞò óå öüíôï âáèéÜò åóùôåñéêüôçôáò; «Óôç äéÜñêåéá ôçò äéáäñïìÞò, êáôáãñÜöù ôïõò åóùôåñéêïýò

Stop at the End of the Night Another series of works called Underground Railway, presented at the Athens Art Gallery in 1995 and later at the Wigmore Fine Arts Gallery in London, led the artist to opt for the apparent absence of man. His passage from the upper to the underground world may have occurred by accident, but these works attest to the artist's thematic and stylistic consistency. "In May '93, a taxi drivers' strike forced me to go down the stairs of the railway. I hadn't used the 'underground' for years, and this descent made me feel like Ulysses in Hades. A forgotten world appeared before my eyes, at once unknown and familiar". He had first–hand experience of the lower world. In his life he had reached bottom, so he could better appreciate the surface. He knew the silence of the bottom, which distorts sounds and sharpens the senses. He wasn't afraid to get trampled and then to rise again. He came to know hell and darkness. His surrealistic period (1986–1990) may well depict better than any other this particular aspect: the immense silence, the halt of time, the isolation of sound, the effort to apply order and balance to landscapes of everyday absurdity. The 'Underground' series records repetitive everyday scenes. Descent, entry, confinement, trip, choice of direction, exit. Could this be a description of life itself over a backdrop of profound introspection? "During the journey I record the inner mazes of the stations, fleetingly, Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 041


ëáâýñéíèïõò ôùí óôáèìþí, öåõãáëÝá, ìå ôçí Üêñç ôïõ ìáôéïý, Ýôóé üðùò ãßíïíôáé áíôéëçðôïß áðü ôïí åðéâÜôç, êáèþò ôï ôñÝíï ðåñíÜåé ìå ôá÷ýôçôá áðü ìðñïóôÜ ôïõò, åíþ ôïíßæù ôáõôü÷ñïíá ôçí Ýíôïíç åíáëëáãÞ áíÜìåóá óôï öùò êáé ôï óêïôÜäé». ¸íá áêüìá óôïé÷åßï ðïõ èßãåôáé óå áõôÞ ôçí åíüôçôá Ýñãùí åßíáé ç åðéêïéíùíßá. Ó÷åäüí áíýðáñêôç ç åðáöÞ ôïõ âëÝììáôïò, ôá ÷áñáêôçñéóôéêÜ ôïõ ðñïóþðïõ åßíáé êáé áõôÜ áëëïéùìÝíá. ¼ëá êéíïýíôáé íù÷åëéêÜ, âáñéåóôçìÝíá. Âïõâüò êéíçìáôïãñÜöïò êáé áðÝñáíôç ìïíáîéÜ óõíáíôþíôáé óå Ýíá óêïôåéíü åíõäñåßï ìïñöþí. Ïé äéÜäñïìïé ôïõ õðüãåéïõ ëåéôïõñãïýí ùò ÷þñïé üðïõ êïñìéÜ êáé öáíôÜóìáôá äéáëýïíôáé óôïõò ìç÷áíéóìïýò ôùí ôñÝíùí êáé óôéò äéðëÝò êáôåõèýíóåéò ôïõò. Óôï Ýñãï ìå ôïí ôçëåöùíéêü èÜëáìï Ïìüíïéá – Åðéêïéíùíßá åðé÷åéñåß åíáãùíßùò íá åðéêïéíùíÞóåé ìáæß ìáò ìÝóù ôçò ãñáììÞò ôïõ ôçëåöþíïõ. ¢ëëùóôå ï êáëëéôÝ÷íçò åðéèõìåß íá ìåôáöÝñåé ôçí áôìüóöáéñá ìéáò åðï÷Þò ðïõ ÷Üíåôáé. Ç ôå÷íïëïãßá êáé ïé åðéëïãÝò ðïõ åðéöÝñåé, åßíáé Ýíá Üëëï óôïé÷åßï ðïõ åðéóçìáßíåôáé. «Åßìáé æùãñÜöïò ôïõ óÞìåñá. Óáí æùãñÜöïò ôïõ ðáñüíôïò ‘ôñïìïêñáôþ’ ôïí èåáôÞ ãéáôß ôïõ äåß÷íù ôïí êüóìï ðïõ æåé, ôçí êüëáóÞ ôïõ».

through the corner of my eye, as they would be seen by a passenger as the train speeds by, and at the same time I emphasise the sharp alternation of light and darkness". Another element he examines in this series is communication. Eye contact is almost non–existent, the facial features are also distorted. Everything moves slowly, languidly. A silent movie and a vast loneliness meet in a dark aquarium of forms. The underground tunnels act as spaces where bodies and ghosts are crushed under the train gear and the two directions. In the work with the phone booth Omonia – Communication he tries desperately to communicate with us over the telephone. Moreover, the artist wants to convey the atmosphere of an era that fades away. Technology and the new options it brings is another element he emphasises. "I am a painter of today. As such, I ‘terrify’ viewers by showing them the world they live in, their hell".

p. 042 _


Ïìüíïéá – Åðéêïéíùíßá, Omonia – Communication 1994, ëÜäé óå êáìâÜ, oil on canvas, 170x110 cm, éäéùôéêÞ óõëëïãÞ, private collection

Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 043


ÁðïóðáóìáôéêÞ Áöçãçìáôéêüôçôá Ç ó÷åäüí åãêõêëïðáéäéêÞ áöçãçìáôéêÞ ðáñÜèåóç óçìáíôéêþí óôáèìþí ôçò éóôïñßáò ôçò ôÝ÷íçò, óå óõíäõáóìü ìå ôç óáñêáóôéêÞ êáé óõíÜìá âáóáíéóôéêÞ ïðôéêÞ êñéôéêÞ ôùí ãåãïíüôùí ðïõ ìáò ðåñéâÜëëïõí êáé äéáìïñöþíïõí áÝíáá ôï êïéíùíéêïðïëéôéêü ìáò ìåôáìïíôÝñíï óýóôçìá, åìðëÝêïíôáé, óõíáíôþíôáé êáé åíßïôå áõôï–áðïâÜëëïíôáé áðü ôïí êáìâÜ–åñãáóôÞñéï ôïõ ÄçìïóèÝíç ÓêïõëÜêç óôçí ôåëåõôáßá ðåñßïäï ôçò äïõëåéÜò ôïõ (1997–2005). ÐåéñÜìáôá åðï÷þí, ôÜóåùí, óõíäõáóìïý åêñçêôéêþí ðñïóùðéêïôÞôùí ðïõ Üëëáîáí ôçí ðïñåßá ôçò ôÝ÷íçò êáé ôçò óõíåßäçóÞò ôçò, óõíõðÜñ÷ïõí êáé áõôï–áðïêáëýðôïõí ôá êëéóÝ ôïõò ìå ôç âïÞèåéá ôïõ åýóôï÷ïõ ÷åéñéóìïý ôïõ äçìéïõñãïý êáé óêçíïèÝôç ôïõò. Áõôü ðïõ ïé õðüëïéðïé ôï êÜíïõí êáëõììÝíá –ôï íá ðáôïýí äçëáäÞ óôçí åõñùðáúêÞ ðáñÜäïóç êáé íá ÷ñçóéìïðïéïýí åéóáãüìåíá óôïé÷åßá äß÷ùò åðåîåñãáóßá– ï ßäéïò ôï åêìåôáëëåýåôáé, ðåéñáìáôßæåôáé êáé óõíäéáëÝãåôáé ìå áõôÜ, ìåôá÷åéñßæåôáé ôéò åéêüíåò ôçò éóôïñßáò, ôéò ìéêñÝò êáé ìåãÜëåò óôéãìÝò ôçò, åêöñÜæïíôáò ôáõôü÷ñïíá ìéá íïóôáëãéêÞ äéÜóôáóç, Ýíá Üèñïéóìá åìðåéñéþí, áëëÜ êáé ìéá ðñüèåóç íá áðïìõèïðïéÞóåé ôçí éåñÞ éóôïñßá ôçò ôÝ÷íçò êáé ôï ìïíïìåñÞ ôñüðï ðïõ áõôÞ ãñÜöôçêå áíÜ ôïõò áéþíåò. Ó÷åäéÜæåé ôï èåìáôéêü êáé ÷ñïíéêü ôáîßäé ôïõ, åêìçäåíßæåé ôéò áðïóôÜóåéò, äñáðåôåýåé ãéá áêüìá ìéá öïñÜ. «Áðü ìéêñüò ó÷åäßáæá ôï ôáîßäé êé üëï Ýóêõâá ðÜíù óôá Ýñãá ôùí Üëëùí æùãñÜöùí, ìå åêåßíç ôç äßøá ôïõ îÝìðáñêïõ íáõôéêïý üôáí êïéôÜæåé ÷Üñôåò êáé öùôïãñáößåò [ìÞðùò ôåëéêÜ ï ðáôÝñáò ôïõ ôïí åðçñÝáóå ìå ôïí Ýíáí Þ ôïí Üëëï ôñüðï ðåñéóóüôåñï áðü üóï íüìéæå;] áðü ÷þñåò åîùôéêÝò, ìáêñéíÝò, ÷ùñßò íá õðïðôåýïìáé ðùò åß÷á Þäç îåêéíÞóåé. ÊÜèå Üíèñùðïò Ý÷åé ôïõò äéêïýò ôïõ äñüìïõò ðïõ ôïí ïäçãïýí óôçí áõôïóõíåßäçóç. ×ñåéÜóôçêå íá ðåñÜóù üëá üóá ðÝñáóá ãéá íá êáôáëÜâù üôé Þìïõí åäþ êáé êáéñü ìÝóá óôç âÜñêá. ¸ìåéíá Üíáõäïò».

Fragmentary Narrative The almost encyclopaedic account of major milestones in art history, combined with the sarcastic and tormenting visual critique of the events that surround us and constantly shape our socio–political post–modern system, are brought together, enmeshed and sometimes self–ousted from the canvas/studio of Demosthenis Skoulakis in the latest period of his work (1997–2005). Experiments to combine eras, trends and forceful personalities that changed the course of art and its perception coexist and reveal their clichés under the dextrous manipulation of their creator and 'stage director'. What others do surreptitiously, basing themselves on European tradition and using imported elements without processing, Skoulakis consciously exploits: he converses and experiments with them, employs images of history, its major or minor moments, and at the same time he expresses a nostalgic aspect, a sum of experiences but also a tendency to de–mythisise the sacred history of art and the one–sided way in which it has been written over the centuries. He plans his journey over subjects and time, abolishes distances, escapes for one more time. "I had been planning the journey since childhood, always pouring over the works of other painters with the thirst of an out–of–work sailor who looks at maps and photographs [could it be that, one way or another, his father influenced him more than he thought?] from distant, exotic countries, without suspecting that I had set off already. Every man has his own routes to self–awareness. I had to go through everything I did before I realised that I had been in the boat for a long time. I was left speechless". p. 044 _


27ç Éïõëßïõ 1890, äåýôåñç åêäï÷Þ, (Van Gogh – ãéáðùíÝæéêç ãêñáâïýñá), July 27th 1890, second version, (Van Gogh – Japanese engraving) 2001, ëÜäé óå êáìâÜ, oil on canvas, 149x199 cm

Demosthenis Skoulakis _ 045

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