16.02.13 27.04.13

Xippas Athens Past

It is difficult to classify the work of Minos Argyrakis. The entirety of his artistic creation has something elusive. Maybe because he used to be impulsive and work effortlessly, refusing any compromise. The insight of his works seems almost prophetic today. By the power of his sincere and simple lines he presents the most severe criticism with the greatest lightness, treating with caustic humor every value system and unveiling the hypocrisy in all facets of public life.

Minos remains passionately independent. By combining the satirical with the dreamy in his own unique way, he depicts everybody’s most intimate thoughts and desires.

Alain Jouffroy, in the preface of the book Minos ou l’humour de la liberté, published by Galilée, writes about Argyrakis: “Insisting as he does with energy and humor on the beauty of paganism, he has kept its spirit alive. A society which finds sex shameful is a vehicle for dictatorship.” However, always according to Jouffroy, “There is modesty in his false immodesty, and a lot of melancholy hidden in his laughter.”

Minos Argyrakis was born in 1919 in Aidini, Asia Minor. He lost his father in the Asia Minor Catastrophe and came with his family to Athens. Thanks to Pinelopi Delta he graduated from the Athens College and later became a student of Yannis Tsarouchis. He worked as a journalist, caricaturist and scenic designer but he was a painter above all. He traveled and spent a long time in Europe and the United States, but he would always return to Greece. He was a close friend of Tsarouchis, Moralis, Gatsos, Elytis, Takis, Theodorakis but especially Manos Hadjidakis. The fruit of this friendship was the renowned “Street of Dreams” and later the “Pornography”. Minos Argyrakis passed away in 1998.

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