LYDIA GRAVANIS The Imposition of the Stronger 1990 - x +

CN: GraL1990stro

MT: oil on canvas in original wooden frame (130x90 / F:134x94x4)

TX: signed with brush at lower right in Greek <Gravani '90>, at rear upper right <LGravani '90>

DN: Ms. Lydia Vassiliades - 2006

LC: ACG - John S. Bailey Library

CM: Lydia Gravanis' colorful paintings currently on show at Maria Papadopoulou Gallery are an expressionist outburst of inner feelings and emotions. The warmth of pulsating colors, exuberant brushstroke, and rich surface texture of paint flowing outwards on the canvas make their own passionate statement of expression. Gravanis creates an almost fairy-tale landscape, lush and dense, which may be read as an allegory of the living world. She fills the landscape with fanciful animals, beautiful wild flowers, and even with distinguished-looking Chinese personages. The imagery is forceful and imaginative, each panel unfolding its own narrative: a yellow butterfly flying into the cavity of an old house conveying the sense of a dying soul; two tiger cats playfully attacking each other; fish swimming in deep water. A dramatic atmosphere is evoked in the painting of a group of large insects hovering over the same victim. An eerie yellow glow highlights the dark purple bodies augmenting their ominous movements. In contrast another painting depicts the beauty of two cormorants, their delicate white bodies surrounded by flowers pulsating by vivid red hues. The red landscape is a striking painting with a seductive red background, a fiery sunset ouitlining the bare branches of a tree and the graceful soar of an eagle. In another painting red highlights the elaborate robe of a Chinese who seems captivated by the fury of the tiger towering above him. Gravanis portrays men and animals to define man and his instincts. § Gravanis studied painting and engraving at the Athens School of Fine Arts and drama, later acting for ten years at the theater. She has had several individual shows, has participated in many group shows (Athens, Moscow, Cyprus and New York) and has also designed for the theater. [The Athenian 24/04/1992]