From magazines and newspapers
…If you want to identify, somewhere in the artist’s soul, the source of his creative ability, you must look at his imaginative faculty, which is, essentially, transformation, or better metamorphosis… The artist makes use of the ability he masters, that is metamorphosis, to give back to people the memory of what they have lost. He recovers the myths and the great philosophical ideas of Esiodo, Plato, Homer by casting them into history in an oneiric dimension, by subjecting them to a continuous metamorphosis of past becoming present and anticipating the future… And with the power of imagination, his work, he contrasts and strongly opposes the contemporary rushing to consumption, to the mechanical and thoughtless use of modern technology which has turned human beings into technological primitive men. I suggest to observe art in silence and meditation: art is a gift to men that gives them back something they have forgotten, the ability to dream.
Teodoro Katinis – philosopher quoted from: Foro Ellenico – Aprile 2006 DOSSIER- ARTISTI GRECI IN ITALIA
The mythological painting of Julianos Kattinis
… The painting of this cosmopolitan Greek is a continuous and constant dialogue with man and the surrounding world by which he is entirely captivated … Landscapes, still lives and figures are always the pretext for Kattinis to unbury the past civilizations, from the Sumerians to the Egyptians , the Aztecs and Mayans. This past is the other aspect of his painting, the main radiant core from where he finds inspiration for his created world. Today it looks congenial and tomorrow it might prove a long dreamed vision. What matters are the roots where Kattinis, attentive and watchful, finds the ‘”humus” of his inspiration …
Michele Calabrese Quoted from ““rassegna mensile d’arte Il Poliedro” December 1969 by
We are following with great curiosity the development of this Greek artist’s work since when he started living in Rome many years ago.
In his last exhibition in Rome organized by the ” Centro internazionale d’Arte del Poliedro ” Kattinis has somewhat mitigated some original harshness, softening both the inspiration and certain austerity of colors.
In Kattinis’ last paintings in fact, his Italian dwelling has shown its effects in the enriched nuances of color of an undoubtedly pictorial value …
Michele Calabrese quoted from the magazine ” il Poliedro” Rome 1970
… After experimenting with the abstract art, the expressionism, the surrealism, the pop art and other modern artistic movements ( with the aim of clarifying his view of things and composing his painting at the diapason with our century) , Julianos Kattinis, strong of his memories of the Near-East and his contacts with the Bauhaus and the School of Paris, projects his ethereal figures on the map of the world, curbing his figures to better expand his field of action.
He is a man accustomed to the deformations of the human form, to the bodies moving in the space, but always faithful to the so called “Universals” belonging to the scholastic philosophy.
To him human beings are merely light shadows incorporated into cosmic forces. He observes them from different perspectives while his disillusioned gaze wanders about their possible development, and also possible misfortune, sometimes originated from their egotism and selfishness…
Victor Hakim quoted from “La Revue du Liban” n.713 26 agosto 1972
In Kattinis’ painting the research of the deep roots – expressed by interlaced images and a flourishing of pictorial creation of color (as in “The Water Woman” and “Mirage” for example) – is always a longing for the discovery and revelation of the ancient time when the joy, the hope, the game were conceived…
Natale Antonio Rossi quoted from“Rassegna mensile d’arte Il Poliedro” Roma, gennaio 1979
The ground floor rooms of Palazzo Braschi welcome the solo show of the painter Julianos KATTINIS, Greek of birth, influenced by the Middle-Eastern art, but mostly by the European culture, having fixed by years his residence in Rome . Here he has found the ideal environment for his work and his inspiration… With him we meet a creation that, by amalgamating cultures of various extractions and technique, is sometimes difficult to interpret. The aesthetic result is however extremely significant…
Renato Benedetto Rome, aprile 1972
…Like a new born Aeneas moving from the Eastern coast to Rome, after playing his games with the Olympic gods in that Greek land which gifted him with her genius, Kattinis pursues the route of imagination and memory through ideographic, alphabetic connections in a compound of different Cultures; thus creating with his hand a new mental texture. In a genuine language he rewrites the archaic enliven spirit of the exoteric East, with the eagerness of his technical and manual ability in affording frescos and graphics, painting and watercolors.
…Different cultures gather together, in his artistic work, where the East and the West melt and combine , where the first can be admired in the turgid color and impressive light, while the last encloses the whole dialectics of the European avant-garde, with Picasso and his opening to the European profound transformation.
His works convey a vigorous synthesis, the sense of a compelling personality, original and poetic, far from being crystallized, where the matter and the forms of his images are taken by a sudden dizziness. Consequently the organic nature of their morphology becomes an expanding frantic universe reaching the most concise and hallucinatory outcomes that gives life to a new reality… All this underlines the fantastic and metaphysical elements, combined in harmony with the personality of Julianos Kattinis…
Carlo Franza, quoted from the magazines “Leader for chemist” and “leadership medica” May 2004
Julianos Kattinis is Ulysses’ offspring. His life is studded with adventurous migrations, and his paintings are a heap of preys brought away from his natural lands of conquest. Sumptuous fragments of the East surrounding pure shadows of the Olympic myth, exotic flowers under the crystalline skies, stately figures whose deep gaze reveals their ineluctable destiny, among irascible landscapes springing from a volcano…
Ugo Moretti quoted from the Art Magazine “La Sponda” November-Dicember 1989
Among Manciano, Saturnia and Montemerano, among Pitigliano, Sovana and Sorano, Julianos Kattinis has listened to the echo of a civilization and has turned them into art, painting three frescos, unique in the world. The four elements: Water, Earth, Fire and Air, The two worlds, Heaven-Mirage. Their common note, the thread conductor that indissolubly unites the three frescos seems to be the idea of binding past, present and future. Kattinis has understood that we are at the threshold of a new civilization and that the humanity feels the need of the ancient wisdom so as to move its footsteps toward the unknown future. This initiative basically aims at offering an excellent product not to be compared to the other operators’. A product (in this case a high quality reception ) situated inside a context where the work of art has a role of protagonist. The project enhance the quality of Pianetti Farm, as well as the whole area.
The Newspaper of the Art Supplement the Sponsors’ Newspaper N:227 Dicember 2003
Since around eight years the Tipografia Aquila has sponsored the Greek artist of international fame Julianos Kattinis. At the beginning the collaboration between the Tipografia Aquila and the artist consisted in financing invitations and manifestos for the artist’s solo shows, and later in the execution of his graphic works (handicraft lithographs) at no cost. Recently the Tipografia Aquila has organized and is holding creative and cultural solo shows of Kattinis’ works in Italy, along with the printing their catalogs. Under the guide of the Maestro, the owners of the Tipografia Aquila have given life to a charity project, creating an original hand-made lithography (50x35cm color ) of Madre Teresa of Calcutta in Rome. The whole printing, almost 50 samples, has been given to the Madre Superiora of Mother Teresa of Calcutta House in Rome, on June 2003 . With the support of the artist, the Tipografia Aquila has contributed to spread the knowledge of classical and modern graphic techniques that constitute the core business of the enterprise. Besides, the items realized for Kattinis’ shows aim at promoting the production and the name of the Tipografia Aquila.
The Newspaper of the Art Supplement the Sponsors’ Newspaper N:227 Dicember 2003
… Kattinis’ etchings are authentic graphic patterns, a sequence of unreal images that merge distant time and space civilizations
The technique used by the artist offers a mixture of different solutions, which the “purists” of gravures would not easily admit.
Nevertheless the result of this unusual amalgamation of etching and engraving, often enriched by pastel and watercolor, are very lively and enjoyable works. They combine an “archaic” flavor and a fluent line, where
Cinzia Folcarelli from the art magazine “Terzo Occhio” Bologna, dicembre 2003
Everything in modern Western art, even art foremost in the vangard, can trace its lineage on one side or the other to the classical art of ancient Greece. With that premise, this young and energetic Greek painter naturally feels that any aspect of modern art is part of his birthright for him to adopt as he pleases.
Oils, drawings, prints and multiples at this exhibit prove not only how eclectic he is at relating Greeks to Braque, Picasso, Chagall, Klee and so on, but how adept he is at adjusting his choices to Grecian art as the ideal measure of man. The ancient Greeks have a mythological term for it too: Procrustean. In other words, if it falls short, stretch it, if it overextends, trim it.
Kattinis has limitless imagination and prolific technical command, which lets him treat solemn themes with seemingly irreverent levity. Included in the show is a recent series of panels on the theme of Olympic Games, another classical descendant, to be submitted to an international exhibit in Barcelona later this year. In these Kattinis romps as free as a champion allowed to break training. He says they are meant to honour both athletes and sedentary spectators, without whom the games would be less than a full measure of man.
John Hart DAILY AMERICAN Sunday – Monday, May 25 – 26, 1975
…if it is true, as he says, that there is no art without philosophy of life, then the painting of Julianos Kattinis can illustrate better than any word the Westanschaung that is behind is work , while it guides his hand on the canvas. The dreamy shapes, the bewitching colors, the references to classical mythology and metaphors of contemporary life, everything is linked to his extraordinary life adventure….. In the strong colors and dreamlike suggestions of his painting some models of the past are identifiable with his work. They communicate the spirituality of a Byzantine icons, and above all, the aspects of the Mediterranean identity, where Greece, the Middle East, Italy can be found. But, most of all, they are permeated with Kattinis’ philosophy… art munificently given
Manuela Mirkos journalist quoted from “ Foroellenico” Rome Dicember 1999 edited by the press office – Ambassy of Greece
Kattinis etchings from the album “The Etruscans”
The great event of the Jubilee 2000 occurs during the 45th year of Julianos Kattinis’artistic activity, a painter imbued with several cultures which flow into his art and merge into an expression of strong emotional tensions.
The experience of Kattinis travels along the history and civilization of Greece, of the Middle East, explores the cultural traditions of the Mediterranean countries, to convey them towards new forms of painting, towards the western cultural world. Thus Art becomes a message of meeting and amalgamation of different and multiform Cultures, Art becomes the noblest expression of Human needs…
Quoted from the magazine “La Sponda” Rome, January 2000
Julianos Kattinis The account of a life for art
“A picture is like a kiss. It cannot be repeated. Art is not a common job, it is a vocation, a passion. You do not know why you paint … Yet today you see endless copies of the same work repeated for commercial reasons, to keep up with current trends. My paintings are unique, and each image is different from the others. Also my prints are edited in a limited number…”
My interview with Julianos Kattinis occurs in his studio of viale Castrense within a messy pile of works, a creative chaos similar to his unconscious, that gives life to his astonishing paintings …
Diego Zandel quoted from the art magazine “Segni d’Arte” III bimestre 2005 – Rome
The gallery “La Pigna” has recently hosted a solo show retrospective of the paintings of Julianos Kattinis, a Greek artist resident in Rome since more than forty years.
The show exhibits forty oils on canvas that embrace the whole artistic career of the painter, covering the period from 1962 to 2006. Kattinis’ works, fascinating and enigmatic, are together archaic and modern. Characterized by a strong symbolic component, they are the space in which the mysteries and ancestral rites of the world are performed; the fertility rite, the sacred union between the male and female aspects of the cosmos, between man and woman, the sky and the earth ..
Marta Manzoni quoted from “Terzo Occhio” Bologna, dicember 2006
The brush, or rather the soul, of the painter Julianos Kattinis emanate Mediterranean life.
…It has been an amazing experience for me to admire the paintings this charming young gentleman born on a boat (what a destiny!) They wholly mirror his way of thinking. Mondogreco has met him several times, not only in his warm an friendly home in Rome …
Julianos Kattinis, who will exhibit works never shown before at eCampus University of Rome on September 16th, is an ardent supporter of the Mediterranean world. He claims that everything, absolutely everything, was born t here , neither in Scandinavia nor in America. That is why we use to call it “mother earth of the Mesogheios ,…
Because the mother- woman is an icon of the Mediterranean cradle of civilization. It is not a futile invention of dreamers or intellectuals, but the fundament of a society deprived of his cornerstone, the paedia of the ancient Greeks…
Fracesco De Palo quoted from ” Mondogreco” Rome, December 4th, 2013
Kattinis has many fervid friends and admirers. I arrive, the last to tell him my astonishment for his temerity and broad mindedness. We hide ourselves when Kattinis stands out of the trench. By looking through his artistic curriculum, one immediately realizes that he has a vocation for epos, adventure, which do not reveal themselves in a sequence of monotonous expressions, but by strokes and cuts, by flashes and fragments: Kattinis detests stagnation and therefore aestheticism; he hates indecision and therefore pure intellectualism. His symbol is neither Achilles who is tricked by a tortoise, nor Narcissus forgetting his face in a fountain. His last works show me a passionate soul, a proud intellect who does not dream, but thinks and explores
Leonardo Sinisgalli poet, essayist and critic of art from the album ”Gli Astronauti” Roma 1972
The magic of Julianos Kattinis’ painting is clearly dictated by the immediate assemblage of different images reproducing the reflection or perception of the surrounding reality expressed as an inner reality.
For Kattinis the spiritual universe is the irrational universe, a creating vortex towards delirious connections between the surrounding reality and inner emblems.
The gesture that accompanies his hand all along a dreamlike mental path is something that springs from the impulse to transform – accompanied by a solemn and still dominant music – memories of facts laboriously expressed, lived and collected into magical impressions…
Julianos Kattinis: one of the most modern and spontaneous artists of his generation, rich with extremely vivid and impressive ferments, an above average artist, sometimes exceptional and lonesome.
Sandra Giannattasio journalist quoted from the album “Gli Astronauti” Roma, aprile 1972
The spiritual intellect in Julianos Kattinis’ paintings and engravings emerges from his positive creed towards humanity. The figure of man, simplified and reduced not in its visual intelligibility but rather in conformity with an archaic creative principle, is the dominating theme in all the artist’s works. In his formal and graphic representations – singularly original and distinctive – Kattinis fixes man out of his temporal significance and consciously places him both within and without the problematic of his time. Therefore the psychic and physical situations he propounds do not merely transcend the commonly human and eternally valid elements; even more, they are made dynamic by his explorations into those areas of tension generated by the process of civilization in which man is called upon to live…
Heins vo Mackowitz Innsbruck dicembre 1972 Quoted from the album “Gli Astronauti “ed. Il Poliedro
Julianos Kattinis, Greek of birth and blood, is an oriental Pilgrim that has finally found his landing in Rome, after having stopped for a long time in Damask, in the Cairo, in Innbruck and Munich, with inevitable visits to Paris. To choose means to abandon, in the sphere of art, the potential that belongs to each one of us for an univocal decision. Kattinis has done it after expressionistic, fabulous, symbolic initiations, by admiring Caravaggio’s skies in Rome; since then he has endeavored to pull out from the carpets and from the oriental frescos turgid figures of life, women and men of flesh and blood, chrysalises that monstrously swallow, bulky figures and chimeras…
Pietro Bianchi Quoted from the album “Gli Astronauti “ed. Il Poliedro Rome 1972
A mass of quivering bodies advances out of the night, beating the air in a sudden sprinting flash , great horses belonging to the phantom riders of the past, galloping along unexplored, hidden regions which lead to the uttermost ends of the possible universe.
With his powerful imagination Kattinis travels with them in the universe of time, forging new links between spiritual and physical events of the past and the vital energies of the present, projected towards the future. Images of the two wheeled chariots emerging from the Etruscan paintings and the winged horses flickering from the roofs of their temples are shaped up, in a rapid succession of creative moments, into a symbolic figure of animal, man, wheel, screw propeller, turning quickly into a shuttle that spits fire and sputnik that cuts the air in its endless race towards future purposes. The shadow of a charioteer-pilot rides and leads a wheel rotating in the air, similar to the floral disk of rose windows adorning the façade of great cathedrals, and symbolizing kinship among men and with the whole of creation; in its rush towards boundless aims, this centaur-machine darts along the dusky sky, driving a message of everlasting faith in progress and civilization.
By Clara Guarany- from the Album “ THE ETRUSCANS”
From the catalogs
My dear Kattinis,
I let “the insiders” give an opinion on your work; such a committed and important exhibition deserves the critical support of signatures much more qualified than mine. I can only tell you that your poetic work, fluctuating between memory, dream and desire, charms and at the same time bewilders me. I hardly believe that any other work of art has ever influenced me with such a deep and lasting sensation as the one offered by the slow, meditated, often difficult interpretation oh your metaphysical world. What else can I ask you – an artist of our time – but to steer and accompany my thought? Still I want to tell you something. The album of etchings accompanying your exhibition is splendid: in it the amusing inventiveness, together with the excellence ot the technique, highlights the significance of this new experience in your artistic life. For this reason I wish you the success that you deserve.
Roma, 1972 by Gastone Favero ( from the catalog of the solo show of Kattinis, museo Palazzo Braschi
Engraving as a source of love
Julianos Kattiinis’ engraving is a feisty turmoil of signs and colors arranged in combined patterns and shapes nearly confined within the limits of their physical stage ( the artist reveals a particular liking for a wide- sized matrix ), theatre of their performances, without restraining the propelling fluctuation of the nimble forms quickly moving with harmony within the space of their performances…
The Mediterranean inheritance of Kattinis makes its latent appearance in its multiform stylistic derivations where geographical and cultural distances in space and time disappear in a continuum of his imagination, where pictures merge into anthropological sequences of historical, metaphysical and constructive moments of a collective memory…
Two interconnected attitudes mostly emerge from his creative wandering in time and space: a strongly symbolic vision in his etchings that draw their inspiration from cosmological totems , and a lyric evocation of the beauty and magic of nature in the celebration of its expanding beauty…
Kattinis’ rich and multiform corpus of printing, hundreds of single works, suite and albums, covers the whole prospect of graphic techniques. Besides he has often introduced personal variations either with his own involvement in the drawing of the matrix, or directly with his personal touch on the accomplished single work. Thus enriching the expressive potentialities of the traditional techniques…
But what mostly characterizes Kattinis’ scheme of printing, revealing his vision of the world, is his informal method used in combining and manipulating different graphic and chalcographic techniques within the same piece of work.
Of coarse, Kattinis is very well acquainted with each technique, but he mostly likes to play with the clear-cut delineation of a solid line which easily scans the wide surface, generating pure profiles of object and human shapes in a topographic space. They seem, in an approach of love, to turn up from the eyes and the hands of an ancient Greek pottery decorator.
In my opinion, such a remarkable artist, with the spirit and destiny of a dream story teller and his rich personality, achieves his best creations in the multifaceted surfaces of overlapping drawings and layers of colors in perspective. Here the press deeply engraves the sheet creating the morphologic images of nature, thick and penetrating under the touch of your fingers . A physical place where your gaze plunges, overwhelmed by a universe swinging between myth an history.
Nicola Micieli quoted from the catalog “CONFRONTI DA MUSEO” 4 Maestri dell’incisione Bologna 2003
…Julianos Kattinis is a genuine artist, who, although seldom expressing it, preserves a magic component, that, at first sight, can also disconcert , but later on powerfully captivate. Because Kattinis belongs to the “becoming” life; he is out of the reality in which we are living, projected towards a future in which we’ll live soon, if progress will run with the current speed … with his temperament and the artist’s nature that distinguishes him, he paints life that men will live tomorrow, in the future, devoid of clairvoyance, by way of a rational intuition …
Rolando Renzoni from the catalog of the solo show of Kattinis, museo Palazzo Braschi
…the sequence of figural images – as virtually offered by Julianos Kattinis – does not interpret aspects of reality: women, horses, birds and trees are captured by our eyes in their inner meaning. They may be said to live in an oneiric space, thus conveying the Platonic spirituality of “the inner dialogue of the soul with itself”.
Carlo Giacomozzi from the catalog of the solo show of Kattinis, museo Palazzo Braschi Roma 1972
…each picture evokes a full speech without suspended words, a world of sensations springing from his middle-eastern experience as well as from the European and mostly from the Italian culture. The power of our Renaissance is easily evoked by the cleanliness of sign and the apparent simplicity of the line.
Kattinis belongs to one of the post-crisis periods which overcomes most of the present cultural commitment, mostly manifest in the artistic field. He talks with his versatile imagination to the endless human worlds: an inside dialogue with the outside world, direct and without the use of a false logical speech, in a dimension where even the last dream-censorship falls to make way to an undeniable reality …
by Rolando Meconi from the catalog of the solo show of Kattinis, museo Palazzo Braschi Roma 1972
Julianos Kattinis, born of Greek parents in Damascus, after extensive travelling, and finally settling down in Rome, returns to Greece through the myth. His dimension of “Oriental pilgrim”, of “Ulysses” is fundamental to understand his complex cultural components. His painting on gold, blue and Byzantine emeralds palettes, tells us tales and dreams of a recovered and recomposed past, were we find Icarus and Galileo, the Aegean Sea’s colors, and also faces and lines of Picasso and Chagall, in a process of continuous, deep intellectual metamorphosis. .
By Alessandro Tosi From the catalog “ Cantami o diva…” Pisa – Montecatini Terme 2002
“A remark on the works of Kattinis by Helene Gizi”
… The art of Kattinis today reveals an ecumenical symbolism in the domain of the idea of history that pursues the myth of truth.
His art isn’t often precise but it contains an inner and higher truth, because the logic of art is not easily accessible.
Perhaps because his works contain realistic elements in their secular and universal path. ..
The art of Kattinis today has a purpose: the man with his characteristics in the faces, in the colors, shapes, as if it were made by an artist from an ancient tragedy …his colors, at times strong or soft, enlighten elements of the Mediterranean richness…
Helene Gizi quoted from the catalog Atene, february 1977
“The mystery is the most beautiful experience we can have” this unexpected sentence by Albert Einstein brings us closer to a key component of the art of Kattinis. It is the fusion of rationality and mystery, culture and instinct, which leads to the creation of his works …
… Kattinis’ women, protagonists of his art, are archaic goddesses who preserve in themselves the full force and power of the Mother Earth, love but also the destructive force of Nature .In their faces of enigmatic sphinx echoes the mystery of the desert. The fixity of their gaze, that goes beyond the appearance, toward something deep and remote, comes from the Byzantine icons. Their sacredness, generator of life, is connected with the pantheistic belief of the artist …
… The key to understand Kattinis’works belongs to the artist, but also to each one of us, to our sensitivity and receptivity. It may be the reason why Kattinis never titles his works, to let us identify them with our own world.
Cinzia Folcarelli estratto dal catalogo galleria “La Pigna” Antologic solo show 1953 -2006 Rome, October 2006
Each work of art of Julianos Kattinis, a Greek artist living in Rome since 1970, is a revealed narrative full of appeal, suggestions and references. Here life experiences and mythology interweave, creating a flowing of images, emotions melting on the surface of the canvass. Kattinis’ paintings dizzily enthrall us into a whirl of symbols, an enigmatic, ancestral, mythological world. Each millimeter of his painting surface is thoroughly worked, nearly embroidered. Layers of signs and colors overlap, intersect and melt, thus creating a dreamy and sensual web of atavistic and cryptic symbols. Kattinis participated in the XXXII International Biennal of Art of Venice in 1964. He has exhibited in prestigious centers and galleries in Italy and abroad. In particular he was invited for a solo show at the Museum of Palazzo Braschi – Rome 1972-, and at the National Museuum of Piraeus Athens – Greeece 1977.
Cinzia Folcarelli exhibition e Campus college July 2016