Dimitris Mytaras

From the Contemporary to the Timeless

In the summer of 2018, the Museum of Contemporary Art of the Basil and Elise Goulandris Foundation in Andros presented a tribute to the distinguished, multifarious and particularly popular with the Greek public, Dimitris Mytaras (1934-2017).

Τhe main characteristic of Dimitris Mytaras’ painting is the coexistence of contradictory elements which are skillfully intertwined to create the paradoxicality that runs through his entire fertile and creative artistic course. Poetry is expressed alongside violence, lyricism with brutality, pleasure with coarseness. His work is complex but also original, authentic and multifaceted and evolved over almost sixty years, as long as Mytaras’ creative career; he served his art with absolute dedication, exploring and highlighting with subjectivity and singularity the way he perceived the world around him.

Apart from a distinguished and popular painter, he was also a poet, talented stage and costume designer, illustrator, designer of decorative representations and charismatic teacher. The aim of this tribute was to highlight both his thematic multilateralism and his technical diversity and dexterity.

  • The organizational structure of the tribute was starting with his early youthful period which is characterized by an impressive maturity.
  • Then, the second section of the exhibition was dedicated to Mytaras’ special relationship with the theatre with which he was involved for over 40 years.
  • The imposition of the junta in Greece offered the artist the opportunity to change his painting in order to indict the situation. The ancient statues make their appearance in his work, followed by his well-known Grave Steles, as well as the works “Documents”.
  • Violence continued to dominate his work even beyond this dark period, through the depiction of motorbikes, accidents and landscapes altered by human activity.
  • The gradual appearance of female figures, which ultimately established his repute, offered him the opportunity to renew his palette and lent it a fresh vitality.
  • Finally, the visitor had the chance to discover the very talented portraitist Mytaras. A unity of works that runs throughout the whole career of the artist, starting in the early 1960s, up to his death.

The access we were privileged to have to the impressive, in both volume and quality, archive of the late Dimitris Mytaras, offered us the opportunity to include a plethora of unpublished information in our research, something which imbued this effort with added interest and significance. All this research is included in the bilingual accompanying catalogue, which also contains photographic reproductions of all the works that presented, as well as a long chronology of the artist's life.

About

Basil & Elise Goulandris Foundation Organisation of the Exhibition
Kyriakos Koutsomallis Director
Marie Koutsomallis-Moreau Curator of the Exhibition
Alexandra Papakostopoulou Administrative Secretary
Giannis Ketipidis Assistant Researcher
ELIX - Andreas Georgiadis, Paraskevi Gerolymatou Exhibition Graphics and Labelling
Mikri Arktos Public Relations and Communications Department
Viviane Koutsomallis Legal Council
Kelly Skaftourou, Harry Massouras Finance Manager
Vangelis Panagiotarakos Network Supervisor
Leonidas Issaris Art-store Administrator
Sotiris Piperas Security Services
Michalis Salonikis Facilities Administrator
Orphée Beinoglou Transport of Works
Karavias underwriting agency Insurance
Chris Doulgeris Photographer