Joannis Avramidis

1922 (Batumi, Georgia) - 2016 (Vienna)

Having studied at the Staatliche Kunstschule in Batum from 1937 - 1939, from 1939, Avramidis stayed for four years in Athens. In 1945, he emigrated to Vienna where he studied painting at the Academy of Fine Arts from 1945 - 1949. Avramidis was R. C. Andersen's and F. Wotruba's student. From 1966 - 1967 he taught as a visiting professor at the Academy of Fine Arts of Hamburg. In 1968, he became a member of Viennese Secession and had a professorship at the Academy of Fine Arts of Vienna until 1992.

The head, the human figure, the group - man as an individual and as a social being are his main subjects. He usually composes an upright figure in the seemingly archetypal stele form based upon the idea of the human archetype. Although his is models correspond to natural forms, they are uniaxial, thus having one head, one neck and one chest, but also only one leg. Biaxial structures have two legs, as well as two heads, necks and chests. Even in advanced abstractions, he preserves a reference to the human figure. Timelessness is most important in his works. Influences on Avramidis's art are hardly discernable. However, one could think of the sculptures of early Greek classics, other influences come from Piero della Francesca, Cezanne, Brancusi, Leger, Schlemmer and Wotruba. Drawing plays an important role for Avramidis, who uses it as a means for observing nature and for shaping anatomy and the precise design of the figure. "I would be unable to accomplish anything without studying nature", said Avramidis. The sculptural execution expresses graphic and abstract development processes in a figure. Longitudinal and cross-sections are cut out from aluminum and put together, the carcass being filled with plastic, plaster, wood, aluminum and copper.

In 1957, the internationally successful artist exhibited at the Jan Krugier Gallery, New York, in 1986, at the Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, in 1997, at the National Gallery of Athens. In 1962, Avramidis contributed to the Venice Biennale, and in 2005, his works were shown in Munich at the Pinakothek der Moderne. In 1956, the artist was awarded the State Prize of the Academy of Fine Arts of Vienna, in 1973, the Austrian State Prize, in 1985, the Austrian Medal of Science and Art.