Mr. Bonnard is visiting Athens

Maria Giannakaki

2 Nov – 5 Dec 2018 Trikala

Girl with Cage, ink, colored pencils and pastel on silk mounted on canvas, 50 x 60 cm 2018

Girl with Cage,
ink, colored pencils
and pastel on silk
mounted on canvas,
50 x 60 cm
2018

With his little round spectacles, a small, old-fashioned mustache and the lively look of a person who is discovering new things, he is wandering in the alleys around Acropolis. Before travelling in Greece he had visited several countries, among which Spain, Tunisia, Algeria and Italy; But here, in the clearness of the attic light, he made his decision. He will finish up with Paris and the artist circles once and for all and he will retire in the South of France, just above Cannes. There, he will be able to devour the Mediterranean sun and to paint carefree. And thus, excited with the idea of moving to the French provinces, the sixty-year-old, Pier feels heartened and, despite his exhaustion after the hike, he continues to use his equipment in order to take pictures of the people in Athens.

Lunch on Countryside, collage and mixed media on rice paper, 50 x 60 cm, 2018

Lunch on Countryside,
collage and mixed media
on rice paper,
50 x 60 cm,
2018

A fantastic “album” with pictures taken by the hands and the look of the famous French painter is what Maria Giannakakis revealed in her new work unit. It has never been mentioned in historiography that the artist (1867 – 1947) had really visited our country. An old album with Bonnard’s pictures from Le Kane village and the house with the orange trees in the garden is what triggered, in the Greek artist’s workshop this time, an “Athenian” tale, inspired by Bonnard.

Sweet Dreams, ink and watercolor on silk mounted on canvas, 50 x 60 cm, 2018

Sweet Dreams,
ink and watercolor on silk
mounted on canvas,
50 x 60 cm,
2018

Stimulated by the pictures and fascinated with the arrangement, the artist added local elements; where there is not the element of the Acropolis, there is the continuity of the painter’s colour palette, where the warm colours of red, brown and yellow dominate. And although she kept the element of fear, what Giannakaki saw is not his paintings, but rather his photographic conceptions. Bonnard opened the camera diaphragm and achieved a different colour quality at certain points, giving a blur in his pictures. “His pictures are a kind of personal daydream, says the painter, who has managed, in her personal idiom, to connect herself to a great extend with this feeling in the public conscience. You don’t realize from the beginning what exactly it is, but it mesmerizes you. Each figure is lost within the other, she adds, with the extend of a kaleidoscopic look which begins at the picture and flows into the canvas.

The Dream and The Dreamer, mixed media on silk mounted on canvas, 100 x 100 cm, 2018

The Dream and The Dreamer,
mixed media on silk
mounted on canvas,
100 x 100 cm,
2018

In absolutely pictorial shots, Giannakaki conceived the footprint of this life, in an attempt to transcribe not just Bonnard’s world, but his footprint in painting. His works look like a promise for happiness and with the colour they radiate, they create Heavenly bliss. The transcription of light into colour and the joy of everyday life are impressed in almost all his works. So, as a “legacy”, Giannakaki uses more colour, without denying her own graphic means such as silk and Indian ink. It’s not just an act of respect towards the great painter, but a nice game as well, which really suits her as a style.

The Boy, mixed media on silk mounted on canvas, 20 x 20 cm, 2018

The Boy,
mixed media on silk
mounted on canvas,
20 x 20 cm,
2018

Giannakaki weaved Bonnard’s story on the verge between fiction and the pictorial “narration” taught by the French master. She gave us her “tribute”, which looks more like an enlarged micro-history. They are fragments of great artistic sensitivity and shreds of detached time, whose fragmentation is also their strength. And their great narrative ability is condensed in what Panagiotis Tetsis has said: Giannakaki’s works create for many people a climate of love towards the authentic and familiar expression. In an adept way, she offers us a work unit which reminds us of old family albums, worn out by the ancestral hands. The Sunday meal, the children faces, they all give out a festive atmosphere. Her painting is a praise to joy.

Man is Tingling Renne, mixed media on silk mounted on canvas, 130 x 150 cm,
2018

Man is Tingling Renne,
mixed media on silk
mounted on canvas,
130 x 150 cm,
2018

Flowered head, mixed media on silk mounted on canvas,
20 x 20 cm, 2018

Flowered head,
mixed media on silk
mounted on canvas,
20 x 20 cm,
2018

Mother I, charcoal pastel and acrylics on canvas, 70 x 100 cm, 2018

Mother I,
charcoal pastel
and acrylics on canvas,
70 x 100 cm,
2018

The Traveller, acrylic on canvas, 80 x 80 cm, 2018

The Traveller,
acrylic on canvas,
80 x 80 cm,
2018

Child, mixed media mounted on canvas,
20 x 20, 2018

Child,
mixed media
mounted on canvas,
20 x 20,
2018

Feeding Vinette, mixed media on rice paper mounted on canvas, 130 x 130 cm, 2018

Feeding Vinette,
mixed media
on rice paper
mounted on canvas,
130 x 130 cm,
2018

Her Red Shoes, pastel and ink on rice paper, 2017

Her Red Shoes,
pastel and ink
on rice paper,
2017

Tiger, gold leaf and acrylic on silk mounted on canvas, 20 x 20 cm, 2018

Tiger,
gold leaf and acrylic on silk
mounted on canvas,
20 x 20 cm,
2018