Gardener by Efrossini Chaniotis


The Fisherman & Mermaid’s Tale series
Watercolour and mixed media on paper
70x90cm (framed)


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Exhibition Statement

Having studied sculpture in Australia and painting in Greece, Efrossini’s practice naturally combined both. Her vibrant colour palette is reflective of growing up ‘down under’ and her propensity for storytelling, myth and exploration of Mediterranean themes, the indelible imprint of a rich cultural heritage.
The Painted Sculpture features figurative mixed media works which Efrossini describes evocatively as representing the meeting of Hellenism and Australianism.  “My sculptures represent a creative journey through a landscape of migration, cross-cultural education, and artistic identity.  In Australia, I learnt to think laterally to develop concepts behind my art and experiment, free from the authority that tradition bares. In Greece, I was taught discipline and to embrace art history and to seek beauty which inspired me to believe in the power of art”
The PAINTED SCULPTURE showcases 3 themes current in Efrossini’s work: The Wishing Tree, The Fisherman and Mermaid’s Tale and The Little Mykonos Project. All 3 explore the capacity for art to generate and tell spirited stories. All three aspire to evoke emotion and wonder in an adult audience and all merge the colour and compositional elements inherent in the painting medium with the figurative, sculptural form.
The influences in her work are drawn from childhood experiences of storytelling,  modern art and her Hellenic background. Her execution and themes are in her own admission: “wholly person centred, perhaps romantic and idealized”. As a Greek-Australian and as a sculptor and painter, her work deals with bringing opposites together. Efrossini is compelled to and delights in, discovering ways of creating harmony between things; a purpose ingrained in her from a young age.

The Fisherman & Mermaid’s Tale series

By alternating between mixed media sculptures and canvas paintings I have developed a method to generate stories from my art. When working on a series I approach each new piece as a clue for the next, I literally ask it questions and pay close attention to even the most unassuming visual element. This, in addition to exploring the same subject matter in both mediums, allows the narrative to take unexpected turns. 

THE FISHERMAN & MERMAID’S TALE is the second major story that features in my practice and is represented in this show by The Princess’s Throne. It depicts the moment the mermaid transforms her tail into legs and was created in response to a painting I did of the same subject.

“After spending the 1st year together with the fisherman exploring her home underwater, the mermaid develops a deep longing to know her lover’s world…The transformation took place in the centre of the palace in a sacred ceremony called The Princess’s Throne: she sat, closed her eyes, took a deep breath in and let go…”

Efrossini Chaniotis


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