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FROSSO MICHALEA (Greece, Larissa 1936-2002 / act: Athens)

Frosso Michalea Frosso Michalea was born in 1936 in Larissa, Greece. She graduated from Pierce College, and in 1953 studied painting at the Athens School of Fine Arts in the workshop of George Bouzianis in 1953. She received her degree in sculpture from the École des Beaux Arts of Geneva, Switzerland, (1954-1958) under M. Weber and H. Koening.

Michalea's investigations into the search for abstract tendencies - basically abstracted human forms with references to prehistoric Greek sculpture and Cycladic figurines - lasted a little while. She was soon to indulge decisively in abstract sculpture, following a concise direction towards researching into the morphology. Michalea's entire work reveals that her choices were not commanded by the fashionable tendencies of non-figural art, which was gaining increasingly more of the Greek artists in the 1960s. Rather her work demonstrates a continuous engagement in the attempt to merge life with art. Her works in the period from 1964 to 1970 are characterized by solid forms, mainly in porous stone, sharing clearly a strict structure and inner discipline. Her series Dialogs A and B from 1970 to 1975 put into effect her skills in composition and juxtaposition of layers, primarily in a vertical manner and using wood in the main. On the way to her next series, Landmarks-Mutations from 1980 to 1985, infiltrated the element of a dialectic element of subject matter, such as individual and society; nature and intervention. From a morphological viewpoint, Michalea's latter series demonstrates a mastering in the relationship between verticals and horizontals. Her series of work from 1985 to 1994, such as Movement in Space and Time and Trees and Birds reveals a turn of her investigations into materials and the use of space. In this instance her sculptures are made of tinted sheets of steel, which evoke movement inspired from nature. Typical of Michalea's method is the multitude of sketches and maquettes in preparation of her final work.

Frosso Michalea has presented her work in the following personal exhibitions: Kouros Gallery, New York (1959); Astor Gallery, New York (1970); Zoumboulakis Galleries (1975, 1980, 1985, 1989, and 1994); Michalea: Stone Sculptures 1964-1968, Iolas & Zoumboulakis, Hilton Hotel, Athens (1976). She has also taken part in the following group exhibitions: Panhellenic Exhibitions, Athens (1963, 1965, and 1967); Small Scale, Merlin Gallery, Athens (1965); Young Sculptors, Home of Letters & Arts, Athens (1966); 1 st Open Air Sculpture Biennial, Filothei, Athens (1966); Parallel Events, Hilton Hotel, Athens (1972); XXIII Salon de la Jeune Sculpture, Unesco, Paris (1972); Sculptures dans l' Architecture, Ivry, France (1972); Ora Cultural Center, Athens (1973); Homage to Cyprus, Zoumboulakis Galleries, Athens (1974); XXVII Salon de la Jeune Sculpture, Marne la Vallée Ferme du Buisson, France (1975); International Sculpture Exhibition, National Gallery of Bulagria, Sofia (1976); Avge Festival, Athens (1977 and 1980); Fiera Internazionale di Arte Contemporanea, Bari, Italy (1977); 4th International Triennial Exhibition of Small Sculpture, Budapest, Hungary (1978); Tre Grekisak Utställningar, Konstakademien, Stockholm (1978); Contemporary Sculpture, Athens Conservatory (1979); Europali, Galerie Hasseldt, Belgium (1982); Athens: Capital for 150 Years, National Garden of Athens (1984); Memories-Reformations-Investigations, Athens Conservatory (1985); La Sculpture Grecque Contemporaine, Maison de l' Architecture, Paris (1991); Metamorphoses of the Modern, National Gallery - Alexander Soutzos Museum, Athens (1992); Century, Municipal Gallery of Athens (1995); and Sculpture, Thessaloniki (1997).

Frosso Michalea died in 2002 in Athens.

[Megakles Rogakos 06/2006]

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