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Religious and non- religious painting (from late 18th century up to 19th century)


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In order to thoroughly examine the art of painting in the Prefecture of Larissa and its development over the last centuries, we should include religious and non-religious painting.

A prominent figure and the only representative of Thessalia in the field of religious painting, was Nikolaos Argiropoulos, born in Nikea during the period 1865-1870. His work (despotic icons on chancel screens, main altar entrances, prie-dieux et al) are still found in churches of the area of Nikea, Anatoli of Agia, Ambelakia (he is the main «painter of Kissavos»), Megalovrisso and Elafos, proving the value of his art. He also illustrated churches in Pilio, Limni of Euvoia, Halkida, Athens, Elefsina and the church of the greek community in Marseilles. He also did non-religious paintings for the Favre mansion at Metaxohori of Agia. During the second half of the 19th c. in N Thessalia and mainly the region around Olympus the popular religious painter Konstantinos (his last name is unknown) from Karia of Olympus painted portable icons of large dimensions.

The names of non-religious painters make their appearance in Larissa and the wider area, at the end of the 18th c. They were Ioannis Zerbinos and Anthia Ikonomou. A century later, in the late 19th early 20th c., the popular craftsmen and artists decorated house ceilings, copying European classicism, while still retaining their popular naive style. Also, travelling self-taught artists, following the example of famous Theofilos Hatzimichail, decorated shop walls with a popular sort of style.

A well-known artist of that period was Michalis Pandolfi (1886-1968) of italian descent, who came to Larissa after the disaster of Minor Asia and illustrated the shops in the fish market of the town with marine and pastoral subjects. The Folkloric Institute of Larissa took the initiative to donate 6 of his murals to the Municipality of Larissa.