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Peter Lyssiotis: Various works of art

The  Artist

According to the  Art Gallery of NSW,  Peter Lyssiotis is a Melbourne photographer and publisher of the small press Masterthief Enterprises. Born in Cyprus he came to Australia with his family in 1954. His first book, ‘Journey of the wise electron and other stories’ 1981, contained the dedication: ‘To my parents who taught me how to watch, and how to adjust.’ ‘Since then’, says collaborator Ted Hopkins, ‘Lyssiotis has continued to produce many outstanding artist’s books … and extended his repertoire to include film and photo experiments, typography, design, and forays into gallery spaces with photo montage.’

…From the secret life of statues’ is, in common with all of Lyssiotis’s books, beautifully produced and laden with meaning from its fabric to the images and accompanying, enigmatic, texts: the red glazed kid-leather cover is the colour of blood and fire; as Lyssiotis has written: ‘the love can become … the blood of life.’ The paper ‘is white and smooth like marble.’ ''…From the secret life of statues' rediscovers sixth-century Athens by way of Burwood east.’2 Drawing on his experiences and memories Lyssiotis brings together parts of stories, ‘like those reconstructed amphora’.3 These include the poetry of George Seferis, Jean Cocteau’s film ‘The blood of the poet’ 1930, Montgomery Clift’s facial paralysis, Luis Buñuel’s ‘L’age d’or’ 1930, among many other fragments which spark reveries to do with love and desire, the animate and inanimate. ‘The real story’, writes Lyssiotis, ‘is to be discovered between the images and the text. The outcome of the narrative is to be found outside the pages of the book …



Magrittish Blue eye

The Works of art

The University of Canberra Art Collection has three works of art that represent  Peter Lyssiotis. They cover a diverse range of subjects such as environmentalism, surrealism  and  abstract ideas.  The first, is a photograph showing a landscape with a series of vertical lines  that undulate in the near background. The image was taken at sunset  and reflects the golden colours into the muddy waters of the foreground. The title  is called 'Pollution' and it is  easy to see  how  the vertical lines could take on the form of industrial complexes with the water being the effluent.

Pollution by Peter Lyssiotis Untitled (Moon) by Peter Lyssiotis

The second work of art is untitled (Magrittish Blue Eye).  The work may look a little surreal with  fabric and other material making up the profile of a face.   The work is in direct homage to the Belgian surrealist artist Rene Magritte.  Notice the similar fabric for the scarves and the focus on small details such as the eye (the false mirror). In a similar sense,  Untitled  (the Moon), pays homage to  Rene Magritte's  reflect of life as  bowler hatted men. Here, the man is sitting  alone in a bleak landscape with just some hills and the full-moon.  Of course, thoughts and concepts around the full-moon come into play here and may suggest madness and 'lunar activity'. Both works are clever photographic  montage compositions created around 2006 and acquired by the University of Canberra shortly afterwards.

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