CM: Panayiotis Lambrinidis describes his present work as an 'existential photograph' because he feels that the 'self' may be represented internally, and a selfportrait may act as anatomy. Tending to accompany every work of his with a short poem for private use, Lambrinidis writes: "I see a world 'with-in' me. I see my pieces come to life and sometimes they seem to have their own strength. At times they are good and at others evil, changing continuously - for as long as the game lasts - roles and behaviors. I am rather confused by their autonomy and their incessant appetite in crying out 'Ego', stealing from me the only way I can exist totally". This writing is obviously automatic and, though deriving from the abyss of the subconscious, it nevertheless brings out an existential truth. Lambrinidis plays a game between the one self and the many selves - a perfectly valid subject with reference to an existential situation. For his Autoportrait Lambrinidis takes a black-and-white photograph of his face in absolute profile, which he converts digitally in red tones - the warm color of blood, which retains something from the heart's pulse - in order to accentuate its biological dimension. The artist is interested not in his external appearance, but his inner world; that is the way he feels. Artistic creation is essentially a means of self-knowledge. The geography of his face - with its anatomical features - refers to its material dimension; that we are made of dust. Here the face becomes a farm for animals, just like inside the body exists the 'ego' with all its consonants and variances. The animals are nine and step on the head. It may well be that the number of animals came to the artist subconsciously, but actually the number nine visually fits well on the photograph's square format, which appeals to Lambrinidis for the shape's clarity. The body of the animals references the rhinoceros resembling the chubbiness of children, while their open mouth references the wild lion ready to attack. Here occurs an interesting inconsistency. On the one hand the animals are good and protective, but on the other they are threatening. Animals are symbols in the art of Lambrinidis, standing for fairytale, fantasy, the unreal and invisible. Such animals change roles from guardians to enemies unconsciously. The roles of good and evil are confused, like the warm color of the face is juxtaposed to the cold metal of the animals, and like existential and imaginative aspects co-exist in our inner world. Lambrinidis' Autoportrait describes the inner contradiction of human nature, which conditions our existence. Unable to do otherwise, man embraces and usurps his 'egos'. In the end - despite the lurking dangers - all that remains is the sensation of a never-ending game.
[Megakles Rogakos 05/2007]
ROGAKOS, MEGAKLES In - Situations: Artworks in Time and Space by Contemporary Greek Artists 2007 Municipal Gallery of Kalamata A. Tassos, Messinia
ROGAKOS, MEGAKLES Silent Dialogues: Multimedia Portraits Throughout Time 2008 The American College of Greece, Athens