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Artist's talk: Dimitra Bouritsa

Updated: Mar 19, 2023

"Drawing has been a part of my life since I was a child. However, I studied architecture first because it was thought to be a better choice for me. As a student there, I felt like a whole new world had opened up to me with endless possibilities. The art world kept summoning me, so I did Painting in Athens School of Fine Arts, as a second master's degree, and a year of Sculpture at ARBA-ESA in Brussels in between. Also, I did my internship at the National Theater, where I created 80 masks for L. Pirandello's "Tonight We Improvise," directed by Maurikius. The magical world of theater also was an inspiration, leading me to follow a scenography course. My works have been exhibited to many countries around the world as part of group shows, and many of them are in private collections at the national and international levels. At the moment, I try to stay as artistically active as possible.

Her artistic skills enable her to create scenes that are unique and

Why did you choose painting as your artistic medium?

It seemed that everything was pointing towards painting. Despite not drawing much as an architecture student, I was fortunate to meet many artists and people with various qualities in the arts through my studies in scenography, I realised that painting is a subject which I am interested in. When I started my major in fine arts, everything started to make sense during this process, and I felt that painting is my calling. Painting was regarded as a dated, outmoded form of expression within the fine arts school. To be fair, I did experiment with installations and other fields during these times, but painting is my preferred form of expression.

How do you work? What’s the role of space

I enjoy large scale paintings because they involve something physical. I'm much more excited about the large painting, because it has so much more to say and it’s a structure itself, which I find it emblematic. My ambition is to create murals, to paint entire buildings. I like to work on several projects simultaneously so they become interrelated to each other. I prefer working with oils over acrylics because the latter limit the colour's range and produce a shallow result.

The female presence is dominant in your work, is there something you are trying to communicate with the audience?

The female form in paintings appeals to me. As a woman, I identify with the female form. Women, in my opinion, are so complex, multifaceted, and mythical. My connection to the female form is instinctual. I can't depict a man, unless he is more feminine, as I want to make a statement -a statement about sexuality and gender. I should also mention that becoming a mother has helped me to appreciate women's nature even more. In my art, women are frequently hybrids, such as female versions of animals or plants. A woman's presence carries a metaphysical and symbolic significance. I am influenced by the historical representations of women, their complexity, and their different roles in society over the course of the centuries.

Could you tell me about your influences?

I always wanted to convey a message through my work. I've always been interested in telling stories with a genuine element that serve as a subliminal allegory of reality. I started by reading E. Galeano 's :Open Veins of Latin America. Especially after visiting Cuba, I was intrigued by this culture and its metaphysical component.

My work is influenced by the origins of man, the fertile woman, the movement of the population, and slavery. Το be honest I was frustrated at how Europe exploited these continents. Therefore, I was looking for a way to express my frustrations.

What inspires your work?

I am very interested in combining literature with painting. Usually I find inspiration by admiring artworks and images (from contemporary to works of the past) . Anything can inspire my work as long as it resonates with me. Literature plays an important role in my life and serves as a source of inspiration to me, since I get inspired from imaginary things. For me, everyday life seems very mundane, I'm not the type of person who is inspired by going for a walk.

Generally speaking, I'm not interested in trivial everyday events. Although I am very informed and outraged by what is happening, as an artist I don’t like expressing my anger and connecting my art to a specific contemporary event. Through my work I am trying to address the agonies and fears of human existence.

How would you describe your art?

Usually, I experiment with genres and themes that give me the freedom to express stories through my paintings. I am considering incorporating elements from Renaissance and Baroque portraiture into my work. In short, what I am doing and what I hope to achieve is to initiate a dialogue between my work and the audience. I feel that painting is my calling and is inextricably linked to my existence.

What artistic ideas are you currently attempting to explore?

I'm currently drawn to the aesthetics and clarity of Renaissance. In addition, I am investigating the impact of portraiture. At the same time, I try to compose paintings based on novels and story tails. In a nutshell, the question is: how can literature be visually represented? Recently, I started a podcast series in an attempt to express myself verbally.

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