Thursday, December 29, 2011

Bamboo Shoots, by Heihachiro Fukuda

Bamboo Shoots (1947), by Heihachiro Fukuda (1892-1974)Stamp issued 16 August 1981, Japan
Yamatane Museum of Art in Nihonbashi, Tokyo
Fukuda was trained at the Kyoto City School of Arts and Crafts and he was a prolific Japanese artist of the early 20th century during the Taisho Era (1912-1926).  This work is from the middle stages of this long career  - many of his works reflected simple things in nature over his career.  The works were distinct as they managed to be abstract and realist at the same time.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

School of Athens by Raphael

School of Athen by Raphael (1511)
Greece Stamp issued 1978
Vatican Museum and Galleries, Vatican City (Rome)
This stamp captures a very small part of the high renaissance style fresco, The School of Athens, which is one of Raphael’s most famous works.  It was completed to decorate the Stanza della Segnatura commission by Pope Julius II. The Stanza was the first set of rooms to be decorated, and this painting was the second in the set of paintings that adorn the walls. Although it was created for a grand room in the Vatican, nearly every one of the figures in the painting can be identified as a Greek philosopher, rather than a religious character. The fresco's position as well as the philosophers' walk in direction of the Holy Sacrament on the opposite wall suggested the interpretation of the whole room as the movement from the classical philosophy to the true religion and from the pre-Christian world to Christianity.  Raphael included the likeness of Michelangelo himself in the painting, as the philosopher Heraclitus.  The stamp series was issued to commemorate the 2,300th Anniversary of the death of Aristotle.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Bust of Aristotle by Lysippus

Aristoteles by Lysippus in Rome (copy)
Greece Stamp issued 1978
This marble bust of Aristotle - the Greek philosopher and teacher of Alexander the Great - is from the Roman era and is based on a work by Lysippus (who created his bronze original in approximately 330 B.C.).  The stamp was issued to commemorate the 2,300th Anniversary of Aristotle's death, who lived from 384 to 322 BC.  Lysippus was a prolific sculptor who is considered to be one of the three greatest sculptors of the Greek Classical era, bringing transition into the Hellenistic period.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Secret Assembly of Vostitsa by Kostas Klouvatos

The Secret Assembly of Vostitsa by Kostas Klouvatos (1923-2007)
Greece Stamp Issued 1975
Folk Art

This is an engraving by an artist who is more known for his sculptures.  Klouvatos' work during the 1960s was focused on critical points in the history of Greece.  This one focuses on 26th September of 1820, where all dignitaries of Peloponnese (Moreas) gathered, and Pappaflessas (a Greek Revolutionary hero) is trying to convince them that a revolution should be launched.  Klouvatos attempted to combine elements of Greek tradition with various styles through the ages, thus accounting for this depiction of Pappa Flessas.  The stamp was part of a series that commemorated the 150th Anniversary of the death of Papa Flessas.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Papaflessas by Adam Friedel

Papaflessas, Greek Revolutionary Hero in Maniaki 1by Adam Friedel (1825)
Greece Stamp Issued 1975 

Papaflessas (Grigorios Demetrios Flessas, 1788-1825) was Greek priest and patriot who led a revolution for independence. During the Greek War of Independence Papflessas was Minister of Internal Affairs and Chief of Police, until he was killed during the Battle of Maniaki, in which he led the Greek troops against Egyptian forces led by Ibrahim Pasha. The stamp derives from a plate from a series of twenty-four portraits of figures related to the Greek War of Independence, by the Danish painter Adam Friedel.