The exhibition is part of the overall project “Margarites/Daisies” with which the Municipal Gallery of Larissa-G.I. Katsigras Museum participates in the Cultural Route of the Council of Europe “Roads of Impressionism”
Wandering along the steep winding paths through the story of art , there emerges in front of us art movements that praise the female presence. Impassable, lonely and abandoned, like overgrown country walkways are the routes that lead to female creators. Those that managed to discard the smothering veil of the muse, created themselves the image that they wished to portray.
Throughout the history of art, likewise in the permanent collections of museums, the absence of women creators echoes with its wail of barreness.
Many are the women who over the passing of centuries have been involved in the arts. Their lack of inclusion however from the pages of history and the temples of culture is due to political, social and cultural inequality in a male dominated world. In the patriarchal Greek society in the beginning of the twentieth century the position of women continued to be considered as lower than that of her male compatriot, whilst in America and Europe, the emergence of “New Woman” had already started to take hold. In spite of the threats to their lives, some Greek women held no fear when fighting for equal rights with men.
Amongst them was a rising young artist, Thalia Flora-Karavia. Her talent glowed, and quickly she made her mark on the artistic canvas of the age. Her art was considered to be equal to that of male artists.
“The artistic honesty of Miss Flora is rare, even rare among artists. The artist does not exaggerate to bribe impressions. In front of every painting the observer feels that he is in touch with nature, without excessive ornamentation that other artists use to enhance nature.”
Her age however insisted on seeing men as superior and more able, and so was not able to accept her artistic equality. Art critics of the time frequently referred to her in sexist phraseology, demoting her womanly nature and her right as a woman to create.
When the male dominated world of art dictated the topics that a female artist was “permitted” to work on, Thalia Flora- Karavia carved out her own path. She studied Fine Arts in Munich along with famous artists such as Nikolaos Guzis (1842-1901) and Georgos Iakovidis, (1853-1932). She exhibited her work in the most popular exhibition halls of the time, acquiring a large commercial following. She worked as a war correspondent during the A Balkan War and the Asia Minor Campaign.
In the Katsigra Collection, her work with the title “Daisies” is categorised as an agrarian idiom of Impressionism which despite its conventional topic, hides a second, deeper meaning.
The contemporary art exhibition borrows the title “Daisies” from the painting of the same name, and revisits the work of the original artist creating a visual literacy, thereby elevating it to a synchronous artistic status.
Thirteen female artists honour the great artist, creating “impressions” of her daisies.
The Daisies that are exhibited in the atrium space of the museum experiment with the aesthetic experiences of the observer, having as their focus the awakening of their critical thinking, exploring a tangled social palette and extending their experiential delight though an abundance of image and textures.
Through a post-modern aesthetic approach, the wild flowers of Thalia’s painting are brought up to date, utilising allegorical symbolism. Tumbling between revolutionary ideas of Impressionism and their “debt” as contemporary female artists to embrace current artistic freedom, the artists in the exhibition bring to light the adversarial conditions in which female artists of other times lived and worked.
Art Historian / Visual Artist
Marianna Goudouva, Zoe Zipela, Roula Karaferi, Liana Kraniotou, Demetra Oikonomou, Maria Panagiotou, Athanasia Papatzelou, Eleni Sarli, Ifigeneia Sdoukou, Zoe Seitani, Vasiliki Soultouki, Theodora Tsiatsiou, Vivi Tsiogka
Gombrich, E H. The Story of Art. London: Phaidon Publishers, 1952.
Gotsi, Chariklia-Glafki. “The Reason for The Woman and Women’s Artistic Creation in Greece:(End of 19th Century, start of 20th Century) PhD thesis, Thessaloniki,2002.
Lippard, Lucy, 6th AICA – USA distinguished Critic Lectureat the New School
Myers, Nicole. “Women Artists in Nineteenth Century France. “ In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History, New York : The Metropolitan Museum of Art,2000.
http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/19wa/hd_19wa.htm (September 2008)
Papageorgopoulos, Dimitris, Pastaka Venia. “Thalia Flora-Karavia and Sophia Laskaridou 113 years Later”.STOArt Korai Art Space, National Insurance, Athens 2019.
Tsourgianni, Despina. “Thalia Flora-Karavia”. Peak Publishing, Athens 2018.
 Skrip, Neon Asti, Akropolis, 1906 and Panathinea, t.IB pg 93.
 She studied at private institutions in Munich as the state Fine Art Schools in both Greece and Munich did not accept female students.
 The impressionism movement appeared in France during the end of the 19th century. Its name originates from the word impression. This new artistic movement was revolutionary, as it approached lighting in a new manner , based on weather conditions. It was influenced by Japanese engravings, photography and experimented with the disintegration of the form.
 “I would like all artists to be socially responsible, regardless of their art” Lucy Lippard, Feminist, Art Critic.