Yiannis Tsarouchis (Greek, 1910-1989) Irises 66 x 56 cm.
Lot 29AR
Yiannis Tsarouchis
(Greek, 1910-1989)
Irises 66 x 56 cm.
Sold for £31,250 (US$ 41,750) inc. premium

The Greek Sale

15 Nov 2017, 14:00 GMT

London, New Bond Street

Lot Details
Yiannis Tsarouchis (Greek, 1910-1989)
Irises
signed and dated '66' (upper right)
oil on canvas
66 x 56 cm.

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    Merlin Gallery, Athens.
    Acquired from the above gallery by the present owner.

    Exhibited
    Athens, Merlin Gallery, Tsarouchis, March 22 - April 13, 1966, no. 8 (listed in the exhibition catalogue).

    Whether I paint men or flowers,
    I must reveal the divine spirit that lies within them.

    Yannis Tsarouchis

    A serene still life of captivating minimalism painted with a remarkable radiance of iridescent and sensitive colours, Irises is akin to the pictorial world of folk art and reminiscent of the powerful immediacy and disarming sincerity of Theofilos's paintings. The stylised arrangement of the flowers and the flat monochromatic background, against which the fine contours of the petals and the shining part of the clay pot are highlighted, are also drawn from popular iconography types and Byzantine representational conventions.

    Reviewing the artist's 1966 Athens show which included Irises, the painter and art critic D. Antonakatou noted: "Yannis Tsarouchis at the Merlin Gallery offers proof of the influence of tradition on the work of Greek painters. This blending of ancient, Byzantine and modern Greece has permeated Greek painting for the past 25 years, until it was recently overshadowed by the invasion of foreign influences. All of Tsarouchis's favourite subjects—streets, cafes, neoclassical houses, self-portraits and flowers—were on view at this exhibition."1

    As noted by art critic A. Schina, "Tsarouchis was not really interested in the descriptive rendering of luxuriant floral arrangements. His flowers are not meant to be flamboyant and decorative. On the contrary, they reflect everyday reality, alluding, with their different colours, fragrances, textures and sense of freshness, to warm human bodies and friendly gazes, while conveying something from the period's zeitgeist."2

    1. D. Antonakatou, "Recent Exhibitions in Athens", Architektoniki magazine, no. 57, May-June 1966, p. 70.
    2. A. Schina, "Flowers and Foliage in the Paintings of Yannis Tsarouchis."
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