Nikolaidis George (1924 - 2001)

Born in Maronia, Rodopi in 1924, he studied at the Physics & Math School of the University of Thessaloniki (1942-1945) and then at the Athens School of Fine Arts (1945-1950) under the sculptor Michalis Tombros, also attending classes under Thanasis Apartis.
His early works of the mid-'50s are dominated by a formalised human figure inspired by geometric and archaic art and rendered in bronze and clay. In the '60s he centres upon processing metal into austere abstract forms, to end up with a purely abstract sculpture with stainless steel as his main material. In 1975, with his art in its mature phase by then, he presents his first solo exhibition at Desmos.
The dominant trait in his sculpture is dynamic forms that combine curved surfaces with sharp elements. The empty space acts as part of the sculpture and contributes to the rhythm and motion as key characteristics of his aesthetic approach. The disciplined layout of the forms sometimes suggests an organised cosmic space or the hieratic rigidity of the symbols of some old civilisations.
In the ’80s his visual idiom seems to change in a radical way. He creates environments with life-size human figures cast in plaster and dressed in real clothes. The subjects of these works have obvious references to the cycle of human life, as evidenced by the symbolic red thread that often runs across these scenes. The human figure as it is expressed through representation may well be seen as complementary to his approach of cosmic space through abstraction.
He taught sculpture at the ASFA (1970-1991), and served as its Dean (1984-1989). He also served on the Board and the Art Committee of the National Gallery and the Visual Arts Committee of the Ministry of Culture. He was a member of Art Group A (1961-1967) and the Group for Communication & Education in Art (1976-1981).
He presented solo and group exhibitions in Greece and abroad and participated in Panhellenic Exhibitions (1957, 1963, 1965, 1967), the Biennale of Alexandria (1965, 1978), the Salon de la Jeune Sculpture in Paris (1968, 1969), the Europalia (Belgium 1982), etc. Many of his works are installed in public spaces in Greece and abroad, and others are held at the National Gallery, the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art – V & E Goulandris Foundation, the National Bank collection and in other private and public collections.