The Face as an Enigma


7 FEBRUARY – 06 APRIL 2024

Kourd Gallery is pleased to announce its first show of the new year, an exhibition by three painters, Zacharias Papantoniou, Pelagia Kyriazis and Giampaolo Russo, entitled “The Face as an Enigma”.

Every painted object or person not only raises various questions of a sociological, aesthetic, historical, political, or cultural nature when viewed, but also challenges the viewer with its enigma. Yet the human face remains the greatest enigma, presenting the viewer with a challenge in the face of a flood of meanings and possible interpretations.

Eleni Varopoulou, curator of the exhibition says: “Pelagia Kyriazi, Zacharias Papantoniou and Giampaolo Russo aim at an extreme anatomy of the face with their painting proposals. In their works in oil, acrylic, pastel, drawings and mixed media, the human figure is dissolved, erased, deformed, depersonalised or emerges through volumes of colour as an indistinct creature that is born the moment the viewer’s gaze finds it”.

The works shown in this exhibition focus on the ideas of the shadow, of memory struggling to return and of the invented image of people with a mysterious, ghostly and archetypal existence. The artists distance themselves from the descriptive rendering of facial features and ignore the usual obligations of portraiture for a certain resemblance to the physical face. Instead, they express moments of expressionist nightmare and symbolist introspection. The works are purely idiosyncratic, with sensual and emotional excesses, while moving into an enigmatic realm. All three artists contributing to this exhibition live up to the title of the show: “The Face as an Enigma”. Zacharias Papantoniou uses wild, furious, and anarchic strokes of colour, Giampaolo Russo creates a sculptural struggle with the materia nuda of colour, and Pelagia Kyriazi uses delicate colour iridescences that harbour the absurd, the sense of absence and loss.


Pelagia Kyriazi

Mirror, 2010-12

Chalk and dry pastel on paper.
50 x 65 cm.

Zacharias Papantoniou

Pulp scull, 2023

Oil on canvas
70 x 60 cm.

Giampaolo Russo

Selfportrait with closed eyes, 2012
on canvas
28 x 20 cm. 


Kourd Gallery
4, Kassianis str., 114 71, Athens, Greece.

07.02 – 06.04.2024
Tuesday to Friday: 12.00 – 08.00 pm. and Saturday: 11.00 – 03.00 pm.