CHRISTINA TZANI (GR)
Through watercolour paintings, Greek artist Christina Tzani explores strong subjects that communicate conflicting emotions, often featuring children.
In treating sensitive subjects such as child abuse, she creates powerful and ambivalent artworks. Tzani´s paintings appear delicate and appealing but at the same time unsettling because of the subject choices and the contrasting colours. The dramatic expressions of the artworks is enhanced by the thematization of abuse depicting vulnerable but disturbing figures.
The images create discomfort as the viewers are appealed by Tzani’s skilled use of watercolours but disturbed by their subjects. Many of the portrayed children show bald heads or clenched hands, details which enhance their vulnerability and fragility.
The blank background strengthens a sense of isolation and abandonment which heightens the dramatic effect of the artworks. Although treating sensitive topics, Tzani’s artworks are unique in that they also highlight the resilience of the children conveying a sense of empowerment through their straight eye contact, strong hand gestures and body language.
The artworks don’t victimize the children but rather present them as vulnerable but proud survivors, as many of them confront the viewers staring directly into their eyes sometimes in an almost aggressive manner. Tzani thus plays the viewers making them voyeur of these kids as- locked by the gaze of the children and captivated by the appealing colours- they cannot look away. Tzani creates artworks that raise ambivalent feelings in the audience such as appeal, horror, guilt, fear. Thanks to her technical skills, Tzani’s children and their stories claim a place in the spotlight conveying powerful stories of abuse and survival.
Blue Titled Dark Armor I