Droungas Achilleas (1940)

He was born in 1940 in Piraeus. He studied printmaking at the Athens School of Fine Arts under K. Grammatopoulos and stage scenography with V. Vassiliadis (1959-64). He continued his studies in graphic design at the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London, under Anthony Gross and Bartolomeu Dos Santos (1970-73). A grant from the Ford Foundation enabled him to attend lithography courses at the Tamarind Institute, University of New Mexico, U.S.A. (1975-76).
He began his career as a printmaker, with great success, but from 1974 onwards, he turned to painting. Oil painting became eventually his main expressive medium, as his first two solo exhibitions in Athens indicated (Zoumboulakis gallery, 1974 and 1978).
Initially, he conveyed features of his printmaking style to painting, such as the poetic atmosphere and drawing precision. Insisting on technique perfection, he is led to a virtuosic figurative painting of photo-realistic style, where symbolisms and surprising illusions, create a unique surreal atmosphere. His themes are often inspired by the art of Renaissance or Baroque, and later by the ancient-greek tradition. There are also pop art influences which enable him to handle his images, either allegorically or ironically, implying a dose of subtle social criticism. His colours are pure, underlining the clarity of the atmosphere and the brightness of the objects.
In 1982, he created a 45-metre-long mural for the Athenaeum Intercontinental Hotel in Athens.
He has presented many solo exhibitions in Greece and abroad and has participated in numerous group exhibitions and international printmaking festivals in Greece, Europe and the U.S.A.
In 1994 a retrospective exhibition of his work was held at the Pieridis Art Gallery and in 2009, a retrospective exhibition of 140 painting and printmaking works was organized at the Athens National Art Gallery.