Perdikidis Dimitris (1922 - 1989)

He was born in 1922 in Piraeus. He studied painting at the Athens School of Fine Arts, under Parthenis, Argyros and Georgiadis (1946-1950). He continued his studies at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in Madrid on a Spanish government scholarship (1953-1956), and lived in Spain for 30 years.
His oeuvre evolved within the atmosphere of the Spanish postwar art, in close connection to avant-garde artistic groups (Barcelona's Dau al Set, Madrid's El Paso, et al), and artists, who were part of the modernist movements of the era, and openly criticized, at the same time, Franco's regime. As his early solo exhibitions in Madrid indicated (Fine Arts General Administration Exhibition Hall, 1957 and Buchholz gallery, 1958), initially his searches pertained to the structure of the image within a figurative painting style of symbolic references. However, he soon turned to abstract expressionism and developed a personal idiom, which was on the one hand based on mixed materials (collage on wood, paper or fabric, combined with various painting techniques), and the highly tensed gesture that underlines the dramatic aspect of the composition, on the other. Despite the free-hand drawing style of the figures, his colours remain harmonious and the space is arranged almost geometrically. These features will stay in the next phases of his work too.
Since 1966, his art became more clearly political by adopting techniques of critical realism. He integrated in his painting photographs with shots from the harsh international reality (in Greece too, after the junta of 1967), on clear surfaces and in a constructivist arrangement. His work returned to abstraction after 1980 (and his repatriation in 1985), with a greater emphasis on the visual function of the form and multi-panel compositions.
He also entered into printmaking and graphic arts, while in 1958, he received the first prize of the School of Graphic Arts in Madrid. He was also awarded the first prize of the Spanish Art Critics Association in 1961, and the silver medal at the Exhibition for the International Abstract Art Award in Lausanne.
He presented his work in 25 solo exhibitions in Europe and the U.S., eight of which were held in Greece after 1963. He participated in many group exhibitions and represented Spain in various international art fairs, such as the Sao Paulo Biennale (1961) and the Venice Biennale (1964, 1966). He also participated in Europalia (Belgium, 1982).
He died in Athens in 1989. The retrospective exhibition, Dimitris Perdikidis and the Spanish Avant-Garde was held at the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art in 2002.