Valerios Caloutsis
Valerios Caloutsis has demonstrated extraordinary artistic talent experimenting with various techniques, materials and themes. Firstly devoted to abstract painting, where his dominant concern was the research of textural forms, achieved by gluing a variety of materials. The use especially of mirrors, lenses and polished aluminum parts that produced light reflections, led him in 1966 into the discovery of kinetic expression. In this phase of his kinetic art, his main concern was the relationship between light, movement, and space. The nature of his work was geometric, 3-dimensional and environmental.
His figurative tendency developed strongly between 1972 and 1975 then led him in the series “Naturmatic”, dating from 1976, where he makes use of a number of materials and techniques including photography, pencil and gouache drawings, light and movement structures, electronic devices for sound as well as dead and artificial elements of nature, such as plastic flowers, dried leaves, and stuffed birds. What the artist wants to relate in this mixed-media cycle of work is the alarming prospect of nature’s destruction and reproduction by artificial, technological means.
In his works produced in the 1980s, he focuses on landscapes, seascapes, rock and stone formations. Starting from a photograph, he proceeds to collage and an assembly of photographs which he then rephotographs; adding pencil, ink, or color, he creates a new landscape that is both real and surreal.
Valerios Caloutsis (Crete, 1927–2014) studied painting at the Athens School of Fine Arts (1947 to 1950). In 1950 he went to London where he continued his studies in painting at the St. Martin’s School of Art and took courses in scenery design at the Guildhall School of Drama and Music. In 1953 he moved to Paris and after two years of studies in mural painting at the École des Beaux-Arts, he began to develop his own expression as a painter.
One-person exhibitions include: Galerie 93, Paris (1957, 1958); New Vision Centre, London (1960); Redfern Gallery, London (1961, 1962, 1963); Hilton Art Gallery, Athens (1965); “Kinoptics”, Redfern Gallery, London (1968); “Communication 73”, Desmos Gallery, Athens (1973); “Naturmatic”, Desmos Gallery, Athens (1976); Nees Morfes Gallery, Athens (1986); “Erosions”, Desmos Gallery, Athens (1991); “Erosions II”, Nees Morfes Gallery, Athens (1996); “Transformations 1950-2000”, To Milo, Athens (2004); “Anatropes 1954-2004”, Municipal Art Gallery, Chania, Crete (2005-2006); Oplostasio/Technis, Athens (2014); “Kinetic Communication”, RCM Galerie, Paris (2017); “Transformations of a Landscape – A Retrospective”, Contemporary Art Museum of Crete, Rethymno (2019); “Naturmatic”, House of Cyprus, Athens (2019).