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Soldier and Christ (or Saint) Blessing



Yannoulis Halepas (1851-1938)
Soldier and Christ (or Saint) Blessing
pencil on paper
AGLC 248 @ A.G Leventis Gallery

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About the artist

The artist’s family moved to Athens in 1869, and he enrolled in the School of Arts, where he studied until 1872. He went to Munich in 1873 to pursue further studies at the Academy of Fine Arts on scholarship from the Evangelistria Foundation of Tinos. In 1876, when his scholarship had been discontinued, he was forced to return to Athens, where he opened his own studio. In 1878, the first symptoms of the mental disease that was to prevent him from working for years became evident. In 1888 he was placed in the psychiatric hospital on Corfu, from where he returned to Tinos in 1902. A new productive period began in 1916, when his mother died; regarding sculpture as the cause of his disease, she had destroyed his works. He received the Excellence in Arts and Letters award (1927). He spent the last years of his life in Athens. The sculptor Thomas Thomopoulos played a significant role in bringing attention to the artist’s work.   An iconic figure in Modern Greek sculpture, in his first creative phase – the realistic one – he employed the teachings of Neoclassicism; in the second, from which works in clay and drawings survive, he developed a personal style, conveying his mental state and experiences.

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