Angelos: Let There Be Light – artist’s cosmic retrospective at the Hellenic Centre

Art and auctions, Exhibitions, Insight, Paintings and Sculpture, People and Places — By on April 28, 2018 at 11:35 PM

Maridia Kafetzopoulou, Angelos, and Constantine Lemos,

Angelos: Let There Be Light – artist’s cosmic retrospective at the Hellenic Centre

James Brewer and John Faraclas were at an opening night with a galactic ambience. Their report:

Some 400 people, including an array of dignitaries, flocked to the private view of the “immersive” retrospective exhibition of the veteran Greek artist Angelos.

They marvelled at the transformation of the Great Hall of London’s Hellenic Centre into a canvas glowing in darkened atmosphere for the deeply philosophical themes, based on ancient Greek and universal thought, of this unassuming artist.

Plato’s Ideal State.

They paid tribute to the brilliant curation of more than “just an art exhibition” by the co-curators Maridia Kafetzopoulou and Constantine Lemos, who are founders of the company maca.space.

Among the audience on April 27, 2018 were swathes of people from many areas of commerce including dozens from shipping; a wide range of other leading personalities in the Greek community and London life; the church; the visual arts world; diplomats; civic authorities; and press and public relations.

Meteora.

It is near-impossible to describe the full grandeur of Let There be Light, but one thing is for sure: it amounts to something considerably bigger than the sum of its parts. The way the curators have employed the entirety of the space has made logistics an integral part of the narrative, bringing into play a wider editorial, the commentary by Angelos on humankind’s relationship with the planet.

The experience is musical as well as visual. Angelos for this exhibition has been partnered with the Greek composer Stamatis Spanoudakis, whose soundscapes audible on headphones alongside each painting complement the evocative landscapes and indeed stellar firepower that hits the eyes of the viewers.

Yemen

Angelos Panagiotou, who was born in Farkadona near Trikala in central Greece, studied painting at Athens School of Fine Arts and made many trips to European museum, which inspired his super-realistic depictions of favoured themes against backdrops of the starry cosmos.

In this, his first show in London for some two decades, Angelos goes beyond the image to query what is going on in the world all around us. One of his commentaries sums up the essence of his conclusions: “Our planet is transformed into a graveyard of values and ideas. Our hope is the regeneration of our ideals, which will come from those who are enlightened. At no time has mankind been as selfish and arrogant.  But we cannot save ourselves if we do not care for the salvation of others. Socrates said: ‘If you want to save yourself, you must first save the city.’”

One of many souvenir photos!

Dramatically back-lit, his images are so compelling that they hardly need commentaries – titles include Plato’s Ideal State, Meteora, Yemen, Pomegranates – the fruits of good fortune, Dove of Peace, The Harmony of Life.

The Hellenic Centre describes its Great Hall as versatile venue that is a blank canvas that can be adapted according to the event to be staged. For now, as part of the “immersion” the high ceiling itself is transformed into a fiery firmament. The shutting out of most light from the hall leaves just one intermediary between the viewers and the canvases: Angelos. It is all thanks to the ingenuity and the architectural acumen of curators Constantine Lemos and Maridia Kafetzopoulou.

Stamos J. Fafalios, Archbishop Gregorius of Thyateira and Great Britain, Deacon Meliton and  Sophie Kydoniefs

Despite the majesty and beauty of life and of a world which elicits awe and admiration and of which of all creatures only man is fortunate enough to be aware, man is moving into a new Dark Age, more contemporary, and we all bear our share of the responsibility, asserts Angelos. The curators assent, stating: “More than ever it is the duty of Art in any form, to re-energize our lost values, so that we can once again reclaim our dignity.”

At the official opening, Councillor Ian Adams, Lord Mayor of Westminster, mused on the broader questions of economic crisis and the sacred goal of a new, open world. Viewers in this exhibition had a chance to escape reality, a much-needed diversion in today’s increasingly hostile environment. The work of Angelos stimulates the senses and challenges the viewer to question today’s reality, offering hope and enduring humanity, said the Lord Mayor.

Councillor  Ian Adams, The Right Worshipful the Lord Mayor of Westminster speaking

Councillor Adams praised the Hellenic Centre for its contribution to the capital’s community, fostering the relationship through literature, music and other cultural aspects.

At the private view, the Greek shipping fraternity both that of Akti Miaouli and that of the Square Mile had a very strong presence, led among others by the Tsavliris brothers Nikos and Andreas and members of their families, and distinguished personalities including members of the Lyras, Pateras, Hadjipateras, Lemos and Monios families. The Greek ambassador Dimitris Caramitsos-Tziras and his wife Margarita Mavromichalis, Tenia Koronaiou from the Greek embassy maritime office, Nancy Andriopoulou from the Press Office, Life Action Trust’s Chrysanthi Lemos,  the president of the HESGB Dimitris Monioudis and his wife Camila de Oliveira Diniz, Teekays’s Lilian Evgenides, Elina Apostolakou, Georgia Panagopoulou, Dr. Angelika Kavouni, Eleni Meleti, president of the Friends of Municipal Theatre of Piraeus  and a long list of others were in evidence.

Andreas and Milena Tsavliris, Chrysanthi P. Lemos with Loukas Spiliotopoulos and charming friends

Guests congratulated the parents of Maridia, and the father and family of Constantine who were all present and who have lent inspirational support to the innovative curators.

Stamos J Fafalios, vice chairman of the Hellenic Centre executive board, deserved special mention for his immense support for this and other major events, as did Sophie Kydoniefs the president of the executive committee, Agatha Kalisperas the centre’s director and Christina Vagioti of operations and events and Kay Stavrinou from event sales and business development. The centre’s personnel and catering team earned much praise for their efficient and courteous welcome for guests.

H.E. the Greek Ambassador Dimtrios Caramitsos-Tziras and his wife Margarita Mavromichalis

Abigail Stuart-Menteth and Amelia Hubert from Damson Communications worked non-stop to ensure all went smoothly on the media side.

Corporate sponsor for the exhibition is Lancaster Private Equity, and media sponsors are Kathimerini, New York Times international edition, Kathimerini English edition, All About Shipping and SKAI. Honorary sponsor is Ilias Lalaounis and the Friends of Municipal Theatre of Piraeus .

Curation & Exhibition Design: maca.space

Lilian Evgenides, Elina Apostolakou, Dimitris Monioudis and his wife Camila de Oliveira Diniz

The exhibition is open until May 8, 2018 at the Hellenic Centre, 16-18 Paddington Street, London W1. Opening hours. Monday to Friday 10am-8pm* and Saturday and Sunday11am-4pm. *Bank Holiday Monday 7th May 11am-4pm.

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