When did you start painting?
I started painting in 1990 soon after my father’s death. He was an artist and a great inspiration throughout my life. When he died, I felt the urge to express myself in painting, in his own medium, his own language. I haven’t stopped ever since.
Who did you study with?
I took my first art lessons with the painters Rinos Stefanis, Marian Foukara and Giota Ioannidou in Pafos. Each of them opened a different path in the way I saw and understood painting. I also had the privilege to have numerous conversations on art with Andreas Chalarambides and George Kotsonis. They have given me valuable advice on my work… they still do. They were friends of my father, a community of painters in a way, and I was very lucky to have their guidance and friendship.
When did you decide that you wanted to be a painter?
You don’t decide such a thing. You simply become a painter, …it is a kind of an existential choice if you like.
Where did you study art?
I studied fine art in Athens with Nikolaos Stefos at his Fine Art Studio for three years. I then studied interior design at Akto College of Applied and Fine Arts, and later graphic design at the College of Art and Science, Athens.
What drives you in your art?
Nature is a great inspiration for me. For example, I have always been fascinated by the landscape of Pafos sea caves and particularly by the rocks there, the way their hard edges are ‘carved’ by the sea, their surfaces gradually becoming smoother. I am also driven by the everyday struggles of people in a democratic system that doesn’t seem to make any sense, by the corruption that hinders development, the vanity of consumerism, the subjugation of our dreams by the capital…
What I find interesting in your case is that, on the one hand, you are an active artist, painting and exhibiting your work, confronted with all the struggles that the creative process entails. On the other hand, you are the publisher of this newspaper, of Beach News. How do you find the time and energy do such different things at the same time?
Time is always an issue. But I think that what is important is to do what you want and what inspires you. Art for me is a way to express myself, my inner thoughts, my fears, my demons, my dreams. It is a way to communicate, just like the newspaper is a way to communicate with a broader public. I felt that there was a need for an English-speaking newspaper that would open up a space of communication between the ex-pat community, the tourists and the Cypriots. Beach News aspires to bridge this gap and I think that we have achieved to bring all these different groups of people living here a little bit closer.
Interview taken by Natalie Hadjiadamos