Specialist, Head of Sale, Greek Sales
The Greek Sale / Panagiotis Tetsis (Greek, 1925-2016) La table orange (signed in Greek (lower right)oil on canvas)
Nourished by the Greek light, Tetsis's famed tables captivate the viewer with a festive ritual of blazing colour and, at the same time, a deep feeling of calm and reverie. Disarmingly beautiful and irresistibly seductive, the work offered is easily recognizable as a representation of three tabletops under the sun but it can also be read as a nearly abstract sum total of rounded shapes. The cascading rhythm of the composition emphasizes the picture's still atmosphere and imparts a sense of monumentality and timelessness, while the large areas of undifferentiated colour enhance the effect of unity.
Without sacrificing visual reality, the artist boldly treats colour as a structural element in building up form and deals with light as being assimilated into his painted surfaces. "Tetsis muses over colour, loses himself in its depths, and seeks to reach beneath the skin of the world of appearances, beyond colour, chroma, a word which derives from the ancient Greek chros meaning skin. A sense of unity and balance, a discreet, subtle classicism lies beneath the romanticism of colour. His eye, well-trained and scholarly, yet innocent and lyrical, contemplates the world through a strong and resolute will for life."1
1 H. Kambouridis, "A Gymnasium for the Gaze" in P. Tetsis, Thalassa, exhibition catalogue, Basil & Elise Goulandris Foundation Museum of Contemporary Art, Andros, 2006, p. 66.