Saturday, 17 May 2014

Λαός

Καραγκιόζης και Μπάρμπα Γιώργος
Chapter 4 of Lawrence Durrell's Prospero's Cell - 'Karaghiozis, a Laic Hero' - was when I came across this. Α good six years ago. I shall now try to learn more. We have a poster for a local performance of the shadow puppets in Corfu Town, which Lin framed to hang on the wall of Oliver's room. Karaghiozis Καραγκιόζης faces Barba Yorgos Μπάρμπα Γιώργος - both descendants of entertainment that began in the Ottoman domain as Karagöz and Hacivat. This will be like parsing Punch and Judy for a Greek friend.

'Laic' is a word I've been struggling with, translating the references I was given the other day to articles about the 'Laic' sculptor Aristides Metallinos. It comes from the Greek λαός meaning 'the common people' but without the disparagement attached where class and caste are familiar dynamics.  Lin and I were at Emeral being treated by Angeliki, and her cousin Tasos, to coffee and cake...
Coffee and cakes at Emeral
...and a sheaf of twenty year old photographs of the laic artist lent by Angeliki's parents - son and daughter-in-law, Andrea and Anna. The pictures are totally absorbing; some of them copied for me by Tasos.
Του λαἲκού λιθογλύπτη Αριστείδη Μεταλληνού
Angeliki had set up the meeting. We had no car so she drove us to and from Emeral, letting us shop for groceries at the nearby cash and carry that's replaced Sconto at Tzavros. She is gently familiarising us with the history of her grandfather. Until now we'd had just one slightly fuzzy face but now I see him closer.  There he sits working with his familiar hat - rather like the shepherd's beanie worn by the island's patron saint. The marble rests on tyres to absorb the blows of the chisel...


...other tools to hand on an upturned cardboard milk box. The references are ones I value even if I must wait to read the articles...and indeed have the wording of my references corrected:
Dear Tasos. Can you have a look at the way I have written out - in Greek and English - the references to the work of Aristidis Metallinos that we talked about when we met at Emeral last Tuesday?  Send me corrections, please. 
1. Γιάννη Μ Μαρή (1978) Βιογραφικό - Αριστείδης Ζαχ. Μεταλληνός, Απάνθισμα Γραμμάτων και Τεχνών, Επιμέλεια Εκδόσεως, Αθήναι, σελ. 611-617
1. Yianni M Mari (1978) Biography - Aristidis Zach. Metallinos, Anthology of Literature and Art, Epimelia Publications, Athens, pp. 611-617

2. Ευρυδίκης Αντζουλάτου-Ρετσίλα (1985) ‘Θέματα Κέρκυραἲκής λαογραφίας στο έργο του λαἲκού λιθογλύπτη Αριστείδη Μεταλληνού’, Δημοσιεύφθηκε στο Περιοδικό Μυριόβιβλος, τεύχος 7, σελ. 37-47
2. Eurydice Antzoulatou-Retsila (1985) ‘The folklore of Corfu in the art of the laic stone-sculptor Aristidi Metallinou’, article in Miriovivlos Periodical, issue 7, pp. 37-47

3. Ευρυδίκη Αντζουλάτου-Ρετσίλα (2005) ‘Θέματα Κέρκυρα ι κής λαογραφίας στο έργο του λαἲκού λιθογλύπτη Αριστείδη Μεταλληνού’ στο Πολιτιστικά και Μουσειολογικά Σύμμεικτα, Εκδόσεις Παπαζήση, Αθήναι, σελ.47-70 [ISBN: 960-02-1860-9]
3. Eurydice Antzοulatοu-Retsila (2005) ‘The folklore of Corfu in the art of the traditional stone-sculptor Aristidi Metallinou’, in Eurydice Antzοulatοu-Retsila (editor), Culture and Heritage Combined, Papazisi Publications, Athens, pp. 47-70 [ISBN: 960-02-1860-9] 
If you see any accents in the wrong place, or can edit my translations, do let me know, Tassos. I have the impression that articles 2 and 3 are perhaps the same, with the first one in the periodical Miriovivlos being re-published in the 2005 collection, edited by the author of the article in the periodical. Are the two articles the same, or is the second that appears 20 years later, re-written? Best wishes, Simon, Σάïμον και Λίντα Μπάντλεϊ
Tasos reminded us that thirty years before the result of the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest, his grandfather had carved a similar persona, titled 'Ο Κάτερος'...
...which tends to challenge the perspective on Aristides Metallinos as primarily a 'laic' artist. But we will come to that in time.
**** ****
My latest restoration...

...the legs and frame of an orphan table from beside the wheelie bins below the village, part legless, topless, speckled with wood-worm holes, covered in flaking paint, with no drawer handle.  I found part of another old table - blackened by sun, a castaway in the woods...

...from which I salvaged three beveled planks. Removing rusty nails, I tied them firmly to my bicycle with my leather belt, and cycled homeward realising that my jeans, wide-girthed, had become precarious. To prevent their falling I cut a length of cable hanging from the fence of an abandoned garden as a make-shift belt. The planks fitted perfectly. Where an edge and one corner were missing I cut out the right shapes from the third plank and scarfed them in with glue and screws. Leg-ends were replaced and the table levelled; joints pulled apart, glued and screwed; paint scraped off and the whole well sanded. Lin dug out an attractive handle for the drawer.






While working I was visited by a Jewel beetle



The clouds that come with this wet, chilly weather, continue to afford us incomparable cloudscapes; a view seldom seen in summer when heat haze obscures the spectacle of our delectable Ionian 'lake' and the undulating mainland of Albania and mother Greece.
One evening in the middle of May

No comments:

Post a Comment

Back numbers