Prize Winner

SaltSpace Award

Painting & Printmaking School of Fine Art

Vangelis Gavriil

Artist statement


As an artist, I work mainly across collage, photography, painting, printmaking, textiles and video art. Through my practice I try to create a dialogue with the past and with the History of Art; I try to explore how classical recognizable paintings could be conceptually reinterpreted today, and to do so, I blend them together with my own personal images, found objects, thoughts, concerns or nostalgic memories. My starting point were famous artworks, copies of which were in my grandparents’ house. Some were embroidered by my grandmother and others were just small, cheap, printed copies that adorned the interior of the house. The two central classical paintings that stand out in my work complex, are Géricault’s “The Raft of the Medusa” and Fragonard’s “The Young Reader”.
In the first project, I used the image of destruction in Géricault’s painting as an ambiguous symbol to refer to catastrophic phenomena we often face nowadays, and I made two videos based on it. The first one began from a juxtaposition of images based upon Jeff Wall’s work. Furthermore, I juxtaposed my second video against one of my grandmother’s embroideries, as I wanted to evoke a comparison between the pixel and the stitch and point out the transition to the digital era. Conceptually, I have noticed an element of destruction in pixelated images that could also be interpreted as an element of transformation.
The second project is about Fragonard’s “Young Reader”, a painting that my grandmother also embroidered. Through this project, I delve into the interesting ways of how my grandmother could allegorically be connected to this mysterious feminine figure from the History of Art. Moreover, the painting’s theme of “reading a book”, seemed notably interesting to me, especially when put next to the transition to the digital age and the predominance of screens over books.
An important element of my practice this year, was also getting to share some of my grandmother’s embroideries with the public, thus creating a dialogue with her while paying tribute to her work, which had never been showcased anywhere but the walls of her home.

Instagram profile



Stretched embroidery resembling a screen

"The Raft of the Medusa" reworking - animation version

Special thanks to Filopappou group

"A Young Reader" by Jean-Honoré Fragonard, embroidered by my grandmother

"A Young Reader's" reworking


My grandmother's hands

"A Young Reader's" reflection

plasticine painting

Pixelated images

My grandmother's hand made of her own fabrics