Dambassina Lydia (1951)

Born in Thessaloniki in 1951, at the age of 15 she moved to Lyon where she finished school and took painting and music lessons. She studied painting in Grenoble (Ecole des Beaux-Arts) and psychopathology and pedagogy at the Université Paris V and the Université Grenoble Alpes. She worked for five years with the Centre of psychiatric Epidemiology in Paris (1984-1989).
Her early works, in painting and woodcarving, were exhibited in Thessaloniki (Zeta Mi Gallery, 1984) and Athens (Psychiko Art Gallery, 1986). Her psychiatric studies and her quests in extra-painterly fields are variously reflected in her art: she creates comprehensive visual environments, rigorously structured through a minimalist approach, which exude a feeling of cold distance. Her photographic images, often on a large scale, are always staged in a precise frontal layout, while her environments are frequently accompanied by video projections. In her 2007 exhibition Family Story (Eleni Koroneou Gallery) photography goes together with reports from the Greek and French daily press; this idea recurs later in her large 2012 installation Party’s over – Starts over (Thessaloniki Centre for Contemporary Art and Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, 2012). This installation was about contemporary society’s cultural, economic and moral crisis, a theme she has been exploring since 2008 and to which she returns in her next solo exhibition The Gini factor (Yeni Cami, Thessaloniki 2016). In her latest work, Mors (Larissa Municipal Gallery, 2018), she creates a visual environment of installations, photos and videos in which she explores the subject of death and loss.
She has presented her work in over 20 solo exhibitions in Greece and Europe, and has participated in dozens of group shows in Greece and abroad. Her works can be found in public and private collections.