Greek paintings go under the hammer

More than 70 major Greek paintings of the 19th and 20th century are going under the hammer in London, June 11 as part of a Continental Paintings sale organized by international fine art auctioneer Bonhams. Bonhams, established in 1793, recently merged with fellow auctioneer, Phillips UK, and is currently emerging as a leading British art sale powerhouse. «Our European expansion is part of the growth this union has brought and we have been greatly encouraged by the receptive response of collectors in Athens,» said Caroline Oliphant, director of pictures at Bonhams, in a statement. «We very much hope that this will be the first of many such initiatives, and look forward to welcoming all our clients to the London auction in June. In our introduction to Athens, we have been greatly assisted by Terpsichore Angelopoulou, Lola Stefanidou, Philip Glyptis and Timos Economopoulos of Art Expertise.» One of the most important works in the sale is «The First Music Lesson,» by Georgios Iakovidis. Valued at 160,000 to 240,000 euros, the previously unknown work was identified from an existing painting, part of the Alpha Bank collection; it demonstrates one of the artist’s favorite subjects, the relationship between mother and child. «The Harbor of Volos» by Constantinos Volanakis is another gem presented at the sale. Characterized by a sense of nostalgia and a love for art, the sea and the busy port, the work is valued at 120,000 to 152,000 euros. Nikolaos Gyzis’s «Woman Sewing» belongs to a broader range of works by the celebrated artist, in which he deals with everyday matters, showing ordinary people at different points in their lives. This work is valued at 112,000 to 144,000 euros. Other works included in the upcoming London sale are Constantinos Parthenis’s «Mythological Scene,» and Thanassis Tsingos’s «Trojan Horse.» The works will be exhibited in Athens at the Epistrofi Gallery in Psyrri on May 22, 23 and 24, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.