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Nikos Gyftakis was born in Athens, Greece in 1981. He studied Painting, Theatrical Stage and Costume Design at the School of Fine Arts at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He also carried out musical studies at the National Conservatory from 1987 to 200, which constituted a point of reference and inspiration for the artist’s career. Since 2005, alongside his artistic career, he has been teaching Painting and Costume/Fashion Design in public and private institutions. His career has not only produced portraits and self-portraits, but his knowledge on theatrical art has also allowed him to create stage-settings and paintings for several movies and theatrical shows and at the same time, he has been curating art exhibitions.
In 2012, he was selected among the 30 finalists in the international competition “Surrealism Showdown” at Saatchi Gallery in London. Despite being a well-known artist, he is currently studying Artistic Research in Konstfack, University College of Arts, Crafts and Design in Stockholm, Sweden, where he actually lives and works.
He has taken part in many exhibitions, where he featured as key artist, such as the 2012 “Young Artists VI” in Athens, the 2014 “EFCNI Socks for life ‘14” in the European Parliament in Brussels and the 2009 “Central House of Artists” in Moscow. He has also held three solo exhibitions, such as the 2010 “Liquid Friends” in Erhoupolis, the 2007 “Nikos Gyftakis: Masks and Facades” in Athens and the 2007 “Faces” in Athens as well, and last May he represented Greece in the 5th International Maiden Tower Art Festival of Baku, Azerbaijan.
His "chaotic" self-portraits are made without angular and straight lines, and composed of mainly of curved lines and circles, creating a sense of constant transformation and distortion. This characteristic of seemingly ever transforming and dynamic portraits derives from the artist’s musical inspiration, which is combined with the artist’s knowledge and taste about aesthetics, creating each time an introvert and unique reality.
His art is a combination of expressionism and surrealism, mixed through a colour plan, which makes the theme of man the subject of line distortion. The repetitive and constant use of lines also recalls the concept of time, with its volatility and “liquidity”. Nikos makes his art focused on the theme of man because it is, as he considers it, “a gamble” and “charming” due to its features such as light and deformation that makes the subjects hard to depict through the artist’s surreal taste. The surrealism expressed by his art resembles psychedelic art, with the alternation and contrasts of bright colourful lines that characterise vivid poses and expressions
His art is a combination of expressionism and surrealism, mixed through a colour plan that makes the theme of man the subject of line distortion. The repetitive and constant use of lines also recalls the concept of time, with its volatility and “liquidity”. Nikos makes his art focused on the theme of man because it is, as he considers it, “a gamble” and “charming” due to its features such as light and deformation, which make the subjects hard to depict through the artist’s surreal taste.
Image credits: http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2013/06/swirling-psychedelic-self-portraits-by-nikos-gyftakis/