LANDSCAPES, Selections from the State Collection


Daily: 09.00 – 13.00 & 17.00 – 20.00

Saturday and Sunday: 14.00 – 19.00 – Closed on Mondays

Evagoras Lanitis Centre, Limassol

The Evagoras and Kathleen Lanitis Foundation and the Ministry of Education and Culture announce the selection of Dr. Savvas Christodoulides, visual artist and assistant professor at Frederick University as the curator of the exhibition entitled ‘ LANDSCAPES, Selections from the State Collection’ , which will be held at the Evagoras Lanitis Centre, Lemessos and will run from January 20 through February 24, 2017. With this initiative the Lanitis Foundation and the Ministry of Education and Culture aim to give the opportunity to a wider audience to engage with part of the state collection, which is annually enriched through suggestions made by the Artwork Acquisition Committee.

The curator informs:

Landscapes features works by Cypriot artists from the State Collection which address the notion of the landscape as it has been limned since the early decades of the 20th century, including the days that preceded and followed the island’s Independence.

The exhibition includes works that, owing to their malleability, semantic value and expressive adequacy, fall within the realm of the vast and inexhaustible thematic of the landscape; a thematic that is as old as the history of the Arts and yet so new that it could be considered unexplored.

If we cast a closer look into the acquisitions of the State Collection, we realise the diversity and the polysemy of the works selected by each committee involved.  Features demonstrating not only the objective correlative of the local production with the wider trends or currents, but also the need of the local artists to formulate a visual art language reflecting the local cultural principles and values.

The rural or urban set-up are sources of inspiration for the pioneers of Cypriot art.  Kissonergis, Diamantis, Nicolaidou, Kanthos amongst others, launched through their paintings a long-standing exploration of spatial data always on the basis of principles of depiction. I would suggest that they share Ralph Emerson’s view, that “art is the result of the human will over the elements of nature”.    A belief establishing that the prerequisite for every creative venture is to immerse oneself fully into nature and all its parallaxes.

During the 1950s the concepts of observation and perception of the outside space deviate from the ones that existed previously.  The art of photography seems to abolish the so obsessively sought after and purposeful fidelity of depiction which had until then been ensured through painting.  Renos Evryviades-Widson, through aspects of the island that stand out for their clarity and verisimilitude, launches a transitional period with black and white images.  Gone is the obsession to depict a subject on the basis of observation and with as much fidelity as possible.  During the years running up to the declaration of Cypriot independence, artists such as Chrysohos, Votsis and others belonging to this generation attempt a brave venture: they deconstruct the image assigning a multi-faceted style to the space which they commit themselves to interpret. This may be referred to as “geometric reconstitution painting”.  It is worth noting that the attempts of the aforementioned artists are accompanied by the work of Christoforos Savva with various unprecedented practices for that period.  Savva formulates the landscape first and foremost as an expression of some kind of materiality and his proposals are meant to induct, assign and incite subsequent artists.  The years that followed, including the post-war depression of 1974 did not cease to be fertile.  Kouroushis, Markidis and Sfikas amongst others, embellish the local artistic production with their works.  For them, the landscape constitutes primarily an impression.  The lived space becomes a value which is interpreted as materiality but at the same time it is recorded as a corollary of an innermost impression.

Many others never stop reflecting on the subject of the landscape and attempting stylistically and semantically diverse formulations. However, I wish to concentrate my selection on artists’ works from the State Collection, the majority of which appeared in the last two decades and I would focus on the following question:  How could we approach the subject of a contemporary topiography ? Certainly on the basis of the principle that landscape is a real or imaginary area.  An area that fulfills the human need, expectation or impression for an in situ and in tempo formulation.  By landscape we mean any space where each one’s ideas are connected, saved and collected.  A landscape is anything that hosts, stores or captures what has been “accumulated”, in other words materiality.  Finally, a landscape is every expression of broadness or even narrowness – social, political or other – that artists through their practices raise to a form, an image or a scripture. Many of the works presented in the exhibition define their value on the basis of the versions mentioned above undoubtedly adopting Emile Zola’s quote that «the classical landscape is dead, swept away by life and truth».

Participating Artists: Adamantios Diamantis, Anastasiadis Aristidis, Anastassiades Michael, Charalambidis Nicos, Christofides Marianna, Chrysochos Andreas, Çizenel Emin, Dymiotis Nikos, Epaminonda Haris, Eramian Peter, Evriviades-Widson Reno, Georgiou Paul, Kanthos Telemachos, Kikas Stavros, Kissonergis Ioannis, Kouroussis Nikos, Kyriacou Phanos, Ladommatos Andreas, Lianou Maria, Makrides Angelos, Michaeledes Michael, Mustafa Hulusi, Neokleous Demetris, Nicolaidou Loukia, Panayiotou Christodoulos, Pericleous Vicky, Plant Mary, Savva Christoforos, Sfikas Giorgos, Sierepeklis Zenon, Socratous Socratis, Votsis Stelios.

The exhibition will be opened by Minister of Education and Culture, Mr. Costas Kadis, on January 20, 2017, at 19.30 , at the Evagoras Lanitis Centre, Limassol.

The exhibition will run through February 24

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