Ioanian/ Heptanese school of painting

The above school was founded by Panagiotis Doxaras (1662-1729) and continued by his son Nikolaos Doxaras (1705-75). They too have a street named after them.

During Panagiotis’s life he was rewarded with land on Lefkas from the Venetians who were currently ruling. This was a reward for his services in the army. This enabled him to focus on his art and he didvided his time between where he was born in Corfu although his family was from Kalamata, Corfu and Zante.

The Heptanese school shows a gradual evolution of style away from the previous Byzantine influences towards a more Venetian style. There still religious in content but new techniques are being introduced to differentiate them from previous works. The major factor here was the introduction of oil paint instead of mixing with egg white and the move towards a Western Renaissance style in the realistic depiction of faces in portraiture.

Panagiotis also wrote on the subject of painting which was so controversial it wasn’t published until after his death and is still being debated today albeit in scholarly circles that concentrate on 18th century art.

Nikolaos, having been born in Kalamata, returned to Lefkas to join the army base here and continued painting in a style inspired by Leonardi Da Vinci and the other Italians greats in an effort to modernise Greek painting for a new era. His work is on display in Zakynthos and in the National Art Gallery of Greece in Athens.

The Heptanese school of painting also contains works by Spyridon Ventouras (1761-1833) whose work has sold well at auction previously.

There are many schools that are called Ionian/ Heptanese so you have to follow them with what they refer to ie Painting, literature, Philosophy and Music.

For a look at my other work see here Series links.

Best wishes


Kostis Palamas Greek poet 1859-1943

He was born in Patras but received most of his education in Mesolonghi which is where the infamous British poet Lord Byron ended up.

He went to university in Athens to study law, economics and political science but left shortly afterwards to become a journalist.

He is a well known poet Kostis Palamas as he has had his work translated into English by Theodore Stephanides which helped to increase his fame abroad. He is extremely popular because whenever the generation of the 1930’s is mentioned “Angelos Sikelianos, Odysseus Elytis C G Karyotakis,George Seferis, Nikos Kazantzakis , “etc his name turns up. Here is the view of a Greek so you know why this happens Kostis Palamas.

He is another one of those well connected people who has university buildings named after himself in Athens.

He wrote the Olympic hymn which was used in 1896 and every year since 1960.

At his funeral Angelos Sikelianos led a riot of 100,000 against the establishment to try to overturn the government.

This is the tenth post in the series of Greek but mainly Lefkádian writers and poets which includes a bonus post from Sententiae Antiquae on Sappho.

Aristotle Valaoritis

C F Cavafy

Angelos Sikelianos

Lefkadia Hearn

George Seferis

C G Karyotakis

Ioannis Valaoritis

Odysseus Elytis

Andreas Emberikos

Other series include Greek Authors, Painters, Musicians, Famous Greeks, Foreigners who have an interest in Greece and Rural Villages in Lefkás. All the links can be found here Series links.

Best wishes


Lawrence Durrell

I have already written about the Durrell’s TV series featuring Lawrence and his family mother Louisa, brother Gerald, sister Margo, and brother Leslie here.

Since Lawrence was a prolific writer through out his life I thought he desired a post all of his own. His personal website is here Lawrence Durrell.

I have read parts of Bitter Lemons of Cyprus and I just love the peek into the world of yesterday. The language he uses is phenomenal. Yes some of the terms are now dated and obscure but if you ever needed an education in the English language you couldn’t go wrong by borrowing a few of his terms. You may sound archaic but there is always a time and a place for formal English.

Lawrence lived and worked all over the world during his life so he wrote about the lives and environment of where ever he happened to be with great authenticity. He spoke Greek which greatly assisted with his integration as there were no learning resources in those days and the locals most certainly would not have known English.

His works of which I have some start with Prospero’s Cell which is an account of his life in Corfu. It also includes more well known work such as the Alexandria Quartet based in Alexandria Egypt which links in with C F Cavafy as they knew each other. He even features him in some of his work.

The Avignon quartet is written in the same manner about his travels in France. We are now coming to the works that I know little about having just read about them for the purposes of this post but I will eventually get around to reading them.

His continued employment with the British Foreign Service meant that a posting to Rhodes enabled him to write Reflections on a Marine Venus.

Another assignment to Belgrade allowed him to publish The White Eagles over Serbia.

A bit further along in time he makes a Sicilician Carousel about the aforementioned island. He also comes up with the Greek islands.

So it’s a real journey around the Mediterranean from the birds eye view of an English subject. This was before everyone was required to learn English for business purposes and the days of widespread tourism. So you get to see what the culture was like before the traditional values got watered down with western values.

For more details about his personal life you can read his Wikipedia article Lawrence Durrell.

This is a new series I have started on writers who have an interest or have written about Greece.

Virginia Woolf

Henry Miller

Lord Byron

Eva Palmer-Sikelianos

Other series include Greek Poets, Authors, Musicians, Famous Greeks and Rural Villages in Lefkás. All the links can be found here Series links.

Have you ever wanted to live in an previous era to see what life was really like then?

Best wishes