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Circle of Humanness

On Friday, 6 November 2020, Ikastikos Kiklos Sianti gallery began the new season with the dynamic exhibition “Tondo or Circle of Humanness”. In this original visual event, 18 important painters and sculptors celebrate art as part of the human nature. The Sianti Gallery has presented some of our favorite artists with a challenge: to work on a round surface, encouraging them to emphasize in the center of their image. The result has an aura either of self-reliance or separation from the surrounding space, an astonishing proof of the endless possibilities embodied in the circle.

As Manos Stefanidis, art historian and curator, states: “Tondo or Circle of Humanness” explores the idea that art works in circles, as does life itself. Never-ending circles, overlapping at times, opening euphorically towards the future or disappearing under the weight of their own perfection. The circle, the perfect shape, the disc of the full moon which shines inaccessible on a starless night abounds in symbolisms. It symbolizes the annual circle, the adventure of human life – life, love and its consummation, death – and art, of course, the continuous observation of human existence, since the dawn of civilization. It is only natural that this perfect, even metaphysical shape, should challenge artists to master it, thus enclosing images, ideas, passions and agonies into its ideal form.”

The circle, rooted in Ancient Greece, finds its perfect expression during the Renaissance, when Michelangelo, Botticelli and Raphael transcended the problem of perspective, thus establishing the term ‘tondo’ by the Italian word ‘rotondo’ (round). During the years, many artists – from Monet and Picasso to Andy Warhol, Pollock and LeWitt – have used the round form in order to improve their rectangular productions. The circle, as a positive symbol of unity, has been a source of inspiration for the depiction of the world itself, bringing attention to its epicenter where everything comes together to a special focusing point. It is a symbol transcending its own outlines. And through this transcendence, it represents infinity. It is what stimulates the artistic mind to render motion, color and technique to every human notion. It is what mesmerizes the viewer when he/she comes in contact with art in its simpler, yet fuller form – reminiscing the simplicity and fullness of life itself.

As Rousseau has so emphatically described it: “Living means using my body, my organs, my senses, my abilities, every part of myself which gives me a sense of my existence. Whoever feels the most, lives life in its fullest”.

Participating painters: Christos AntonaropoulosLila Belivanaki, Dimitra Chanioti, Apostolos Chatzaras, Giannis Fokas, Nektarios Kontovrakis, Dimitris KoukosThanasis Lalas, Vivi Papadimitriou, Christina PapaioannouPavlos SamiosPanagiotis SiagrisSotiris SorogasKonstantinos TolisGiannis Valirakis

Participating sculptors: Stelios GavalasChristina SarantopoulouKostas Varotsos

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107 x 107cm
Acrylics on canvas.

Durer’s "Apocalypse" in an indistinct continuum of disconnected images as a symbolic metonymy of the historical crossroads humanity is currently facing.
An imagery exaggerating the meaning of the incident at the expense of the whole. A window recording the events of “there” and at the same time, a window reflecting the events of the “inside”.


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