He paints landscapes and architectural structures in search of the human footprint.
Text: Evi Kallini
«Art was a means of escape for me, as well as a way to make sense of the world. Painting is evolving into a language that expresses things which can’t be fully interpreted and can’t be stated otherwise.»
The human mark, architectural and sculptural forms all merge unexpectedly in the painting landscapes οf visual artist Vasilis Avamidis, whose art is being received with critical acclaim throughout Europe and across the Atlantic during the past ten years.
Born at Kilkis in 1981, Avramidis studied in the workshop of Yannis Fokas and Vangelis Pliaridis, at the School of Fine Arts – Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. In 2011, he earned his Master’s from Central Saint Martins in London, while his first exhibitions were held at the Artforum Gallery of Pantelis Tsatsis in Thessaloniki.
His works have been featured in numerous London galleries, such as “The Contemporary London”, “James Freeman”, “Jacob’s Island” “Matt Roberts”, and he has participated in exhibitions such as “Saatchi’s New Sensations and the Future Can Wait”, the London Art Fair and START of the Saatchi Gallery. Avramidis’ art has also been showcased in Copenhagen and Berlin, while he also collaborates with the Slete Gallery in Los Angeles.
In 2017 he took part in the group show “The Sky’s gone out”, presented in the Arthouse gallery in London with his painting “Tour Guide” (2017, oil on canvas), a quintessential sample of the artist’s technique through which he depicts natural landscapes with light effects reminiscent of studio, night photography or a 17th century Dutch still life painting. In 2018 he took part in the ‘Early Modern Matters’ group exhibition at the James Freeman gallery in London, and his most recent work is entitled ‘Host’, a solo exhibition at the Hiro gallery in Tokyo.
Avramidis chose to paint landscapes and architectures, which, as he says, “the presence of the human mark transforms them into places and environments. The human mark, in this case, is the architecture, usually of a later period such as the ‘70s, which may still be encountered in the form of ruins. My landscapes are not real, they’re based on environments whose existence is impossible.”
Even though his landscapes are uninhabited and void of the human presence, he tries to create environments that are charged with a sense of anticipation, exude a sense of some unknown purpose and ultimately create a pause that’s out of sync with the rest of the world.
While studying in London, he immersed himself into the essence of his art: “My point of reference, as a visual experience, even today, comes from London, but I’ve come back to Thessaloniki, where I can remain productive and focused. It’s an inexhaustible, beautiful city and, in spite of the current economic circumstances, it’s still home to artists who produce work with the same intensity and angst as before. “