GEORGE RAFTOPOULOS

George Raftopoulos was born in Sydney in 1972, the son of Greek parents. In the 1970s, the Raftopouloses found themselves to be the only Greek family in the New South Wales town of Grenfell. George had questions of cultural identity in his youth and continues to do so in his paintings today.

George Raftopoulos speaks of his painting as “mapping the memory”. He refers to his paintings incorporating fragmentary references to places he has been, events he has witnessed, and sensations he has experienced. He refers, too, to his paintings touching aspects of his race memory, aspects of his cultural lineage.

Raftopoulos’s paintings have always possessed an expressionist fierceness. He describes his method of painting as an “interactive process”, in that it is undertaken without the safety net of preliminary studies. His work of the mid-1990s was peopled by human/animal hybrids, inhabiting a world that combined playfulness with anxiety and apprehension. Line plays a key role in his current painting, and his line is both economical and swift. It is as firm and elastic as cartilage. Most of Raftopoulos’s works of the last couple of years have turned on a single colour, which sets the temper of the painting. Recently that sole colour has often been a primary colour.

Many of Raftopoulos’s paintings are inscribed with a single word, printed in the Greek alphabet. These are generally references to figures in history, particularly Greek history, whose presence or actions have influenced the outcome of events that touch us still.

As well as Greek words, his paintings often incorporate numerals, usually dual digits. Their significance remains entirely oblique: they may relate to sensitive military formations, engineering calculations, dates, or map coordinates; they may have secret strategic import, or they may be utterly innocuous. They are Delphic and inscrutable.

-Peter Pinson – Professor – College of Fine Arts – UNSW


WORKS


CV

Born 1972

Lives Works Sydney, Australia

BAVA University Western Sydney, Australia

First Class Honours, Painting, Sydney College of the Arts,

Sydney University, Australia

 

EXHIBITIONS

2016  Nishi Gallery Hotel Hotel Canberra, ACT 9-29 May.

2015 Finalist Fishers Ghost Art Prize, Campbelltown Arts Centre, Campbelltown, Australia.

2015 'MYTHIC Nation, Artereal Gallery Sydney Australia.

2015 'A Retrospective', Greek Embassy, Australian Capital Territory, March 25th Greek Independence Celebration, Australia

2014 'I Couldve been a Jockey' - BEGA Regional, Gallery, BEGA NSW, Australia

2014 'BEAUX MONDE' Mclemoi Gallery, Sydney Australia

2014 Hellenic Museum, Melbourne, Australia

2013 Hillsmith Gallery, Adelaide S.A

2012 Mclemoi Gallery, Sydney, Australia

2010 Tim Olsen Gallery Sydney, Australia

2010 Hillsmith Gallery Adelaide, S.A

2008 Tim Olsen Gallery Sydney, Australia

2008 Flinders Lane Gallery, Melbourne

2008 Annual round table Exhibition New York Arts Club Grammercy Arts Club, New York USA.

2007 Axia Modern Art Gallery, Victoria

2007 Hillsmith Gallery, Adelaide S.A

2006 Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

2006 The Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong

2006 Art Galleries Schubert, Queensland

2005 Axia Modern Art, Sydney

2005 Axia Modern Art, Mebourne 

2004 Axia Modern Art, Sydney

2004 Axia Modern Art, Melbourne

2004 Gallery Philip Neville, Darwin NT

2008 Amanda Gillespie, New York, USA

2004 Shanghai Art Fair, Shanghai China, With Australian Art Resources, Melbourne Australia

2003 Axia Modern Art, Melbourne

2003 Bark Modern Art, Hong Kong

2002 Axia Modern Art, Melbourne

2001 'Liquid', Michael Carr Art Dealer, Sydney

2001 Paris Print Biennial, Australian High Commission, Paris,France

2000 'Bilbao', Michael Carr Art Dealer, Sydney

1999 Volvo Gallery, Sydney

1998 Olsen Carr Art Dealers, Sydney

1997 Varga Gallery Bourdeaux, France

1996 Olsen Carr Art Dealers, Sydney

 

PRESS / INTERVIEWS

7/5/16 - Talking With Painters

 

COLLECTIONS

Private Commission for major yacht construction - New Zealand

Gold Coast Art Gallery, Queensland

University of Western Sydney, Sydney

The Art Trust, Sydney and Melbourne

ABN AMRO, Sydney

Impulse Airlines, Wagga Wagga

Multiplex and Walker Corporation, Wharf Nine, Sydney

Babcock and Browne, Sydney

Westpoint Corporation, Sydney

The Royal Flying Doctors Service

The Chocolate Factory, Sydney

Novell, Sydney

Westpac Property Fund, Sydney

Maddens Solicitors, Sydney

NDC Global, Sydney; Hugo's Lounge, Sydney

Landmine Survivors Network, Washington DC, USA

Prebon Yemone Brokers, New York, USA

Pitcher Partners, Melbourne

Credit Suisse, Melbourne