Artwork date:
pencil on paper
43 X 52 cm

Yannis Tsarouchis was born in Piraeus in 1910. He studied at the Athens School of Fine Arts (1928 – 1933) where, at the urging of Pikionis, he joined the laboratory of K. Parthenis until his graduation. Meanwhile, from 1930 to 1933, he was an apprentice to Photis Kontoglou and worked as his assistant. In 1934 he collaborated with Elli Papadimitriou and the Laikes Technes (Popular Arts) store, producing designs for fabrics, furniture and ceramics. 1934 was the year of his first in a series of collaborations between him and Karolos Koun on theatre and stage design. The following year he travelled to Constantinople and from there to Paris, where he studied copperplate under Hayterre and made the acquaintance of Teriade. Before returning to Greece, he travelled to Italy. He held his first solo exhibition in 1938 in Athens (Alexopoulos store) and participated in the 1st Pan-Hellenic Exhibition. In 1940 he fought on the Albanian front, and during the German Occupation he worked mainly as a stage designer. He was among the founding members of the art group Armos (1949) and took part in the exhibitions of the group. In 1951 he exhibited his work in Paris at the Galerie d΄Art du Faubourg. In 1952, an exhibition of his work was held at the British Council. In 1953, he exhibited his work at the Pan-Hellenic exhibition and at the art group Armos group exhibition and signed a contract with the Iolas Gallery in New York (1953 – 1957). In 1955, he participated in the Alexandria Biennale, and in 1958 in the Venice Biennale. In the same year he was nominated for the Guggenheim Prize and his works were presented in exhibitions in Paris and at the Guggenheim Museum. In 1961, he held a solo exhibition at the Zoumboulakis Galleries, and in 1962 in Paris at the Teriade residence, and at Iolas Gallery, in New York. At the same time, he taught stage design at the Doxiadis School (1960 – 1962) and worked as artistic consultant at Emporiki (Commercial) Bank of Greece (1958 – 1962). In 1966, a retrospective solo exhibition of his work was held at the Astor Gallery in Athens and he was invited to participate in an exhibition in Paris. In 1967, a military dictatorship was established in Greece and Tsarouchis left for Paris. In 1972 – 1973, an exhibition of his works from the Iolas Collection was held at the Zoumboulakis Galleries, followed by his solo exhibitions in Rome and Bologna, (1974) his participation in the Foire internationale d’art contemporain (FIAC) in Paris and the tribute to Theophilos, Kontoglou, Ghikas and Tsarouchis which was held at the Wildenstein Gallery (London) in 1975. In 1978, Zygos gallery held an exhibition of his drawings and in 1981, a large retrospective exhibition of his work was held at the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki and an exhibition at the Spanish Embassy. In the same year, he founded the Yannis Tsarouchis Foundation, which, since 1982, as Yannis Tsarouchis Museum, has organized a series of annual thematic exhibitions of his work. In 1982, he presented his works in a solo exhibition at the Zoumboulakis Gallery. Several solo exhibitions were held in Athens until his death in 1989 (Zygos gallery, Gallery 3, Skoufa Hall). Apart from his work as a stage designer and his collaborations with Minotis, Zeffirelli, Karolos Koun, etc., Tsarouchis also produced translations and book illustrations and wrote books on art. In 1987 – 1988, a large exhibition of his work as a stage designer was held at the Nicholas P. Goulandris Foundation – Museum of Cycladic Art. He died in Athens in 1989 while preparing to stage the play Orestes by Euripides, in his own translation, direction, stage design and costumes. Posthumously, large exhibitions of his work were held, including those in Athens (Zoumboulakis Galleries – 1990, the French Institute – 1990, 1993), and in Paris (Galerie Claude Bernard – 1997). He was a member of the Chamber of Fine Arts of Greece.

Artist's artworks