Institute for Mediterranean Studies

Greek artists in the West, 15th -19th century

Greek artists in the West, 15th -19th century

This program aims at a deeper understanding of Greek artists' work by way of collecting biographical evidence, identifying and documenting their work, and assessing the quality of their production. The program also seeks to investigate the identity of the artists' commissioners and their status within the new cultural environment.

The monitoring of artists' movement from certain areas to different art centers constitutes an indispensable section of Art History, which goes beyond the mere accumulation of information and has much to offer to the examination of greater issues that pertain to the encounter of different artistic mentalities or to the understanding of political matters and issues of ideology and religion.

In the case of the Greek territory and more generally of the Levant, a great number of artists moved, for a short or longer period to the East, either because of the fall of the Constantinople or due to the western hegemonies' conquest, with a view to participating to the artistic life of the receiving place or to be informed about new developments in art. Indisputably, the most characteristic case is that of Domenicus Theotokopoulos. However, both fragmentary evidence and, occasionally, more systematic works (albeit rarely monographs) reveal that the significant number of Greek artists that have acted in the East remains uncharted. To name a few: a) Petros Kontopoulos, the legendary teacher of Taddeo Zuccaro, who acted in Rome and worked in the Vatican, b) the Cypriot Alessandro Cesati, who lived and worked for Pope Paul III Farnese in Cyprus, c) the Cypriot scribe and miniaturist Ioannis Agiomavras (Santamaura), d) the painter Nicolaos from Navarino (Nicola d'Afferino) who lived in central and south Italy in the middle of 16th century and e) Ioannes Pouliatsis, a miniaturist in the region of Naples. The most well-known cases are those of Antonios Vassilakis, from the island of Melos, who worked in many public and private places in Venice and became famous under the name of "l'Aliense", and of Belisarius Corenzio, who worked, mainly, in Naples as well as in Venice, Spain, and Rome.

Apart from the above cases, whose work falls under the History of Western Art, this program purports to examine comparably artists who either visited eastern artistic centers for a certain period, or, having already excelled in their place of origin, decided to settle permanently in these regions. In this category fall, for example, Aggelos and Donatos Bitzamanos, who, coming from Crete, settled in Apulia, Ioannes Parmeniates in Venice, Michael Damaskinos in Venice and Sicily, Panagiotes and Nicolaos Doxaras in Venice, and for a shorter period in Rome, Nicolaos the so-called Tourianos in Spain, Petros Serafeim in Segovia. From this perspective, Domenicus Theotokopoulos' case is of prime importance, since the Italian period of his lifetime still remains, in certain ways, at a level of speculation.

This program aims at a deeper understanding of the artists' work by way of collecting biographical evidence, identifying and documenting their work, and assessing the quality of their production. The program also seeks to investigate the identity of the artists' commissioners and their status within the new cultural environment.


Academic Supervisor
Panayotis K. Ioannou (Associate Professor of Renaissance and Baroque Art History, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete)

Research team
Chara Kolokytha (Postgraduate student, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete)
Manos Cheretis (Postgraduate student, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete)
Marianna Karali (Postgraduate student, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete)
Yannis Tzortzakakis (Postgraduate student, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete)
Polyxeni Yannouli (Postgraduate student, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete)
Irini Matalliotaki (Postgraduate student, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete)
Degree holders of non-Greek universities, through the program “Leonardo” – ΚΕΑ.
 

Deliverables

  • Collection of archival, bibliographical and artistic material about the artists of Greek descent who moved to art centers of western Europe in the period from the 15th to the 19th century.
  • Publications
    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, Belisario Corenzio. Η ζωή και το έργο του [Belisario Corenzio. His Life and his Work], Venice – Heraklion, Istituto Ellenico di Studi Bizantini e Postbizantini – Institute for Mediterrenean Studies / Crete University Press, 2011, 590 p.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “En torno al taller del Greco en Roma”, in Nicos Hadjinicolaou (ed.), Ο Γκρέκο και το εργαστήριό του / El Greco y su taller, exhibition catalogue (Athens, Museum of Cycladic art, 2007-2008), Athens – Madrid: Museum of Cycladic art – Sociedad Estatal para la Acción Cultural Exterior, 2007, 69-95. 

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “Arte Veneta nelle Isole Ionie: documenti e congetture”, in I Greci durante la venetocrazia: uomini, spazio, idee (XIII-XVIII sec.), Atti del convegno internazionale di studi (Venezia, 3 - 7 dicembre 2009), Venice: Istituto Ellenico di Studi Bizantini e Postbizantini, 2009, 765-771.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, entries in Anastasia Drandaki (ed.), The Origins of El Greco. Icon Painting in Venetian Crete, exhibition catalogue (New York, Onassis Cultural Center, 2009-2010), New York: Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation, 2009, 106-115.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “Studenti greci alle Accademie di Belle Arti d’Italia (XIX secolo)”, in Francesco Bruni and Chryssa Maltezou (ed.), L’Adriatico: incontri e separazioni (XVIII- XIX secolo). Atti del Convegno Internazionale di Studi (Corfù, 29-30 aprile 2010), Venice: Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti / Istituto Ellenico di Studi Bizantini e Postbizantini, 2011, 297-321.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “Η Ναυμαχία της Ναυπάκτου στα έργα των ζωγράφων Αντώνιου Βασιλάκη (L’Aliense), Βελισσάριου Κορένσιου (Belisario Corenzio) και Δομήνικου Θεοτοκόπουλου (El Greco) [The Battle of Lepanto in the works of L’Aliense, Belisario Corenzio, El Greco]”, in Kostas G. Tsiknakis (ed.), Η απήχηση της Ναυμαχίας της Ναυπάκτου στον ευρωπαϊκό κόσμο. Πρακτικά της επιστημονικής συνάντησης (Ναύπακτος, 13 Οκτωβρίου 2012) [The impact of the battle of Lepanto in the european world. Conference proceedings (Nafpaktos, October 13, 2012)], Athens –Venice:  Dimitrios and Egli Botsari Foundation – Istituto Ellenico di Studi Bizantini e Postbizantini, 2013, 187-210.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “The Maecenas Alessandro Farnese and the Question of His Patronage of El Greco”, in Nicos Hadjinicolaou (ed.), Ο Δ. Θεοτοκόπουλος μεταξύ Βενετίας και Ρώμης / D. Theotocopoulos Between Venice and Rome, Athens: Benaki Museum, 83-135.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “Con la solita curiosità di questi tali”. Artisti e copisti nei servizi segreti spagnoli tra Roma e Madrid”, in Alessandra Anselmi (ed.), I rapporti tra Roma e Madrid nei secoli XVI e XVII: arte diplomazia e politica. Convegno internazionale, Roma 7-9 luglio 2011 (Real Academia de España en Roma), Rome: Gangemi, 2014, 315-329.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “Los ‘estigmas’ del Greco en Roma. A propósito de una obra perdida del Greco”, Archivo Español de Arte, LXXXVIII / 352 (2015), 409-417.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “Disegno, immagine e astrazione nel Mediterraneo orientale nel dialogo tra le arti”, in Sabina de Cavi (ed.), Dibujo y Ornamento. Trazas y dibujos de artes decorativas entre Portugal, España, Italia, Malta y Grecia, Cordova – Rome: Diputación Provincial de Córdova – De Luca, 2015, 491-500.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “El Greco tra i ‘madonneri’: la critica, le ideologie, il mercato. Nuove luci sul recupero del Trittico di Modena (1937)”, Studi di storia dell’arte, XXVII (2017), 151-174.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “The Modena Triptych and the Question of the ‘Madonneri’”, in Nicos Hadjinicolaou and Panayotis K. Ioannou (eds.), Perceptions of El Greco in 2014, Athens: Benaki Museum, 2017.

    • Panayotis K. Ioannou, “Qualche documentazione su La guarigione del cieco di El Greco nella Pinacoteca Nazionale di Parma (1862)”, Aurea Parma  (forthcoming).

Project Team

Panayotis K. Ioannou

Associate Professor in Art History
Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete
Curriculum vitae

Marianna Karali

PhD candidate
Department of History and Archaeology, University of Crete

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