A country, 1959
Alekos Kontopoulos studied painting at the School of Fine Arts in Athens (1923 - 1929) and then at the Colarossi and Grande Chaumière academies in Paris. He began his artistic career with a purely naturalistic approach to art, following the classic models of the 'high' art which he had studied both in the museums of Europe and in the National Archaeological Museum, where he began to work in 1941 as a museum artist. From 1949, he began to accede to abstract art, an accession which was completed in the 1950s and by which he expressed, in an ever more dramatic manner as he matured, his concern and pessimism over the destructuring of form and the object. In spite of this, in his work, his passion for art and the golden section, which formed the intellectual substructure in his avant-garde tendencies, was retained, so that architectural structure, balance of the items, inner organisation dominate in his compositions - characteristics by which the primordial idea and conception are perceived.
A Country, in which, within an abstract composition, it is just possible to make out an ancient temple on the top of a hill with a bright blue at the base which is reminiscent of the calm sea, is in all probability what the art critic Raoul-Jean Moulin analysed in an article published in Lettres Françaises on the occasion of Kontopoulos's exhibition at the Creuse Gallery in Paris in 1959. " ... Alekos Kontopoulos attempts to gain by a allusive depiction the absolute freedom to depict better the inner structure, thus succeeding in rendering the power of a colour lyricism which leads him to the discovery of the transparency of 'A Country' in expressing its power".