Simos Vassilis (1934 - 2014)

Born in Lamia in 1934, the son of a religious-icon painter, he began to study at the Athens School of Fine Arts (1952-1955) under Yannis Moralis. In 1955, encouraged by the Madrid-based printmaker Dimitris Papageorgiou (DIMITRI), he obtained a Spanish state scholarship and continued his studies at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in Madrid (1955-1960) under Joaquin Valverde, where he received his Diploma in Painting and Profesorado. In 1960 he returned to Greece and completed the ASFA curriculum to graduate in Painting and Theoretical & Historical Studies (1960-1961).
After a short sojourn in Athens he settled permanently in Lamia, where he created most of his work, at the same time teaching art in secondary education. His first solo exhibition of student works was held at the Prefecture Building of Lamia in 1959.
His subjects include scenes from everyday and rural life, worker and farmer figures, animals and landscapes. His style is characterised by geometric levels and large expanses of colour dominated by dark hues. His figures emerge out of these expanses through layers of luminous levels, losing their individual traits to become monumental and idealised, as if representing an intellectual paradigm. The emphasis is on the organised set of forms and the feeling of motion achieved through the interplay of chromatic tones. The compositions are sturdy and disciplined, with a suggestive atmosphere and an introversion that reflects the artist’s existential quests.
He presented his work in solo exhibitions in Greece and Spain. He took part in many Panhellenic Exhibitions at Zappion Hall, in the 2nd and 3rd Youth Panhellenics (1962, 1964) and in many solo and group exhibitions in Greece and abroad. He participated also in all exhibitions of the Visual Artists’ Union of Central Greece (SKETKE). A retrospective of his work, accompanied by a catalogue, was held in 1997 at the “Alekos Kontopoulos” Municipal Gallery of Lamia. His book Chroma kai Mnimes [Colour and Memories] was published by Oionos in 2008.
His works can be found in the National Gallery, the Ministries of Culture and Education, the Athens School of Fine Arts, the Municipal Gallery of Larissa-Katsigra Museum, the Municipality of Lamia, the Piraeus Marine Club, the collection of the Kotopouli Museum, the Municipality of Stavroupolis and in many private collections in Greece and abroad.