20 Cavafika prosopa in gray

The “20 ‘Cavafika’ prosopa in grey” is a collection of 20 sculptures, 20 persons – prosopa.

Like the previous collections “Aliktypa persons” and “12 persons in grey”, the “20 ‘Cavafika’ prosopa in grey” are sculpted in leftovers of the famous Parian marble, latypes of Lychnites, and they are carved with the same tools used by the Ancient Greek sculptors.

I was reading, recently, the book “The Winged Victory of Samothrace. Rediscovering a Masterpiece”, LOUVRE editions 2015. The authors, on p. 101 write:  .. The boat and its base were sculpted in Lartos marble from the island of Rhodes. The statue on the other hand is entirely in Parian marble. An interesting fact … was that the blocks of the statue – the body, the wings, and the drapery – do not all come from the same quarries in Paros. The right arm and the block constituting the upper part of the body (that originally included the upper torso and head) are all sculpted from the most beautiful marble to be found on the island, indeed the most beautiful marble in the Greek world; the famous Lychnites marble from the Grotto of the Nymphs and the Pan or Northern Nymphs quarries. ….. (p. 102)… The artist used only the best – the most translucent – Parian marble, for the flesh of the Winged Victory”.

Paros is a fortunate island, producing Lychnites. My love for the scattered little clippings, which one finds in the surrounding area if one recognizes them, is justified.  

The latypes, used for this collection, have a grey surface.  The hundreds or even thousands of years, that these latypes were left on the surface of the Parian Earth, exposed to the variability of weather, have covered the great whiteness and transparency of the ancient Parian marble with a layer of grey algi, a sign of antiquity.

It was a fascinating process, to remove that “ancient rust” with my chisel, and to do to emerge, through the grey, the faces of this collection.

The names of the sculptures of the collection “20 ‘Cavafika” prosopa in grey”, refer to persons from the poetry of the Alexandrian poet K.P. Cavafy.

Simos Varrias, my son, created excellent photos of these 20 sculptures.

Aristides Varrias