Vasilopoulou, Vivi. “An old piece of cloth.” Works & Days, part of the newspaper Ependytis, 12 March 2005, p. 18.
Just “Looking at an old piece of cloth” Barbara Mavrakaki has already dived into its history, tracked down its ulterior origin, its texture and its resistance to time and to aesthetics. She has fumbled its transparency, its sensitivity, its desire to cooperate with the present, the perspective of its future.
Besides the research concerning its origin, the artist has taken care to upgrade it, consider it precious, establish it and save it from sacrilegious wear and tear. She has looked after its dedication to partings, after transferring it from “artisanat” to “arte”. From non-existence to existing on the surface of a stretcher, from being burned to be hanging on a wall.
While “looking at an old piece of cloth” Barbara Mavrakaki, among other things, follows its step suspended between its perishable life and imperishable art, between conserving its extractiveness and its decision to survive, by excelling in a new mission.
Parallely, from the side of the artist who has created the new preconditions commes the formulation of an absolute aesthetic proposition in its non-hand-made version… going from the realism of life to the surrealism of art, from something useful to something useless, but so beneficial to the soul, the eyes and the touch, which reveres its relation with what is immaculate.
Because the work of Barbara Mavrakaki seems “untouched” by human hand, wind-borne and worn only by the touch of creation. Her textiles bear no stiches. I had no words for her works. She gave me the thread. The exhibition, in the Medusa Gallery of Xenocratous Street, lasts the whole of March.
Marangou, Maria. “A reference to the present.” Εleftherotypia, 21 February 2005, p. 24.
Finally, at the Medusa Gallery we have the exhibition of Barbara Mavrakaki, which is dedicated to Antigone. It is an extraordinary advancement of a painter who started hesitantly, with tentative results and has reached the point of presenting excellent work. The dedication to Antigone is a poetic reference realized on a piece of cloth on which the discrete presence of painting humbly composes. It is a light, almost ethereal work of patience that gains in value under the patient glance of the spectator.
Zacharopoulou, Katerina. “Veils of memory.” Nation Sunday Outing, the weekend edition of Nation newspaper, 6-12 March 2005, p. 10.
The use of cloth as the basic material for the work and ancient Greek myths as main points of reference, make the exhibition of Barbara Mavrakaki entitled “An Offering to Antigoni” a pleasant break for the eyes and for the mind.
Going down the few steps of the “Medusa” art gallery, the visitor is welcomed by the work of Barbara Mavrakaki which creates an aetherial, simple unit, flawless in its execution.
What we have here is a breath of fresh air and, at a time full of tensions of expression, political and transcultural undertones in the works of artists, this work gives us again the joy of a hand-made piece and of abstraction, thanks to an essential and light form, while memory honors the heroes, tragic and real, of ancient Greek mythology.
The basic material is cloth, the central act is printing, the defining movement is the suspension of the cloth in a space tinted with sub-white, subtle golden and peaceful gray colours.
Barbara Mavrakaki has been exercising her art for 20 years now, marking different stages along the way.
She started with frames, continued with installations and she created compositions with elements from nature. The last 10 years her basic material is cloth. Her strong point seems to be always the same: an attachment to as few gestures, lines and inscriptions as possible. Their power comes precisely from the fact that artist realizes the importance of fragments and sees the chaos of a space that, each time, she re-sets in order, as an act of defining her own idea.
It is the artist’s choice to take notes, expressing a kind of inner whisper with which we are anyway familiar, since it is a preparation for the decision concerning every single artistic act:
the solid matter
and you open up