Vlassis Caniaris, Child, 1980, Courtesy the estate of the artist and Galerie Peter Kilchmann
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In art I’m equally interested for the aesthetic creations as much as for the attitude towards life of the creator. Vlassis Caniaris was a modern artist, politicized but never militized, who acted undisturbed for the past sixty years, from late modernism to the roots of postmodernism encompassing his exclusive morphoplastic material, the body of history and more specifically of modern Greek history, from the civil war of 1944-1949 till the dictatorship of 1967 - 1974 and the restitution of democracy to this day. His work was monoid but polyommatus, like that of mythical Argus, reconnoitering the sociopolitical scene inside and outside and taking a position on occurrence. Acting subsequently as great Art acted: comforting, but also revealing; poignant, but also construing. The distinctiveness of his aesthetic overture is in the details; overcome that, transforms a random object in morphological value that transfuses the paltry bits of precious, murmuring any personal history, any laugh or sob in the ears of eternity.
From his first informelles configurations in 1956-1957 on newspapers or drippings on canvas, Caniaris did not describe, he put forward and proposed. At the age of 30, in 1958 he presented his first solo exhibition in Athens (Gallery "Zygos"), which is historically the first solo exhibition of abstract art ever exhibited in Greece. All his works were dedicated to the departed of an appalling accident that had taken place in the mines of Marcinelle – Belgium. The contradiction is that this exhibition was ‘hit’ by pure Marxist criticism as subjective and highly formalistic and praised by the "bourgeois" critics.