Photis Kontoglou, THEOTOKOS PLATYTERA, 1945

Ink on Paper. Dimensions: 22 cm. x 31.5 cm.

Photis Kontoglou, the renowned Greek artist, made this drawing in 1945 as part of his proposal for the wall paintings of the altar apsis of Agios Andreas church in Kato Patissia, Athens. The church was renovated in 1950 and the mural paintings must have finished around the same time. Based on information from the rest of the documents in the folder, where this drawing was discovered, church renovations were common in post-war Greece.
The drawing belongs to Kontoglou’s mature period and is typical of his work, which heavily relies on traditional iconography and style, mainly of the late and post Byzantine period.
Apart from its obvious artistic value, the drawing’s importance is further reinforced by the fact that it is the sole remainder of the apsis decorations. Most of the actual wall paintings have been almost entirely destroyed by humidity.

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