Armaos - Portalaki / Route for Two

Markos Armaos – Sophia Portalaki
Route for Two

Curator: Maria Marangou
Opening: Friday, 16 March 2018, 19:30
Contemporary Art Museum of Crete
32 Mesologhiou str., Rethymnon



The Contemporary Art Museum of Crete is pleased to show the exhibition entitled Route for Two with works of Markos Armaos and Sophia Portalaki. The exhibition is about two prominent Greek artists who work persistently, discreetly and methodically, lending an exploring eye to their respective fields of focus.

The opening of the exhibition was on Friday 16 March, at 19:30 on the premises of CCA.
About the exhibition the Curator and Artist Director of CCA, Maria Marangou writes:

….Markos Armaos - Sofia Portalaki. Two autonomous art figures with different visual languages and means of expression, sharing nonetheless many formal elements that start from abstraction and lead to abstraction. One a sculptor, the other a painter. An artist couple co-exhibiting in the city of Rethymno to provoke a visual discourse between the two- and three-dimensional with a fourth dimension that belongs to both artists.

About the work of Markos Armaos’s notes:
….Eyes on Lysippus, Praxiteles, Phidias. He contemplates, admires and, of course, keeps the wound of all Greek sculptors open—to be in the bizarre situation of coexisting daily with the masterpiece.
Books, movies, information, travels and visits to the museums of the world. The modern in all its glory, while our artist seems to choose to see and study such sculptors as Auguste Rodin, Emile-Antoine Bourdelle or Degas. The work is the cast sculptural form which, over the years, acquires a stylistic autonomy; classicism and romanticism are striped of any descriptiveness, while the piece’s dynamic upward thrust sets up a dialogue with the space related questions posed by the new sculpture. Armaos’s pure, unadorned works modeled in plaster and molded with his hands take on another dimension when we take a closer look to the shadow set up by the sculptor in the foundry and the hard materials. And this is the “Work”. An austere, shiny form that may take different shapes but is always flying or running, being fully aware of the breaths provided by the well-measured voids and wholes.

…and continues referred to Sophia Portalaki’s work:
Sofia Portalaki’s “Work” has strong roots, tracing its origin to the horizon of the highland plateau, the home woven fabrics, the Minoan palaces and the observation and practice of the art of icon painting. The century of modernism passed over her but did not crush her. The study of the volumes and fine lines of her past, the study of works by the Constructivists and exponents of abstraction, the experiential learning and acquired education, her clarity of character and gallantry of spirit result in an enlarged, pure form of painting.
If we look up Kandinsky’s essay On the Spiritual in Art we’ll read about the importance of colors, their meanings and how they relate to each other. The same can be said of Johannes Itten’s texts, which exerted such an influence on Bauhaus artists. Sofia Portalaki knows, keeps abreast of, assimilates but does not stop.
Her reflection on the visible balances of monochrome compositions in blue, green, or red—colors engaged in a dialogue in two-dimensional space and adhering to rules of devotion—goes back and forth. Apart from the images she experienced firsthand during the years of innocence, she moved towards geometrizing her abstraction in representational terms. Portalaki belongs to those few artists whose works are not time specific, imbued instead with a poetic and musical quality found in completely different artists, both timewise and in terms of ideology.

…The relationship between the two-dimensional pictorial surface and the three-dimensional sculptural form, in other words the relationship of Markos Armaos’s work to that of Sofia Portalaki, reveals the close affinity between the two. Different materials and different experiences of manual work imbue the oeuvre of this artist couple with the spirit of a common approach.

The exhibition is accompanied by a bilingual catalogue.
It will run through 26 May 2018 and, as always, guided tours and educational programmes will take also place. 

Contact info:
CONTEMPORARY ART MUSEUM OF CRETE
Development Enterprise of the Municipality of Rethymno
32 Mesologgiou str., 74100 Rethymnon
Tel: +30 28310 52530, Fax: +30 28310 52689
E-mail: info@cca.gr http\\: www.cca.gr

The Poetry of Memory
Greek artists living in Berlin
21 September 2018 - 31 January 2019 
Kara Mousha Pasha Mosque
Contemporary Art Museum of Crete, Rethymno