Katerina Diakomi
The work of Katerina Diakomi centres on a linear drawing, with simultaneous forms from life, which is thoroughly attractive. The austerity of the means she employs does not prompt us to look for the richness of painting. The beauty of the materials exempts itself in favour of ascetic aesthetics. The means that she uses are the bare necessities: paper and pencil. As the line joins and separates, it intertwines in labyrinthine patterns with a wealth of ramifications. What remains on the white paper is the sparseness of the outline, of the line itself. By means of the power of the line’s plasticity, Diakomi draws patterns of transition in which the lines hover between an inner and an outer space. With her pencil she draws linear images whose reading remains a conundrum in the interests of the complexity of their design. As her lines interweave, they create a complexly confused skein of thread. Diakomi, like another Ariadne, draws with pencil to paper making convoluted formations which take on the appearance of a biological organism whose reading remains an enigma. The artist seems to working with references to textbooks of anatomy and marine microorganisms [Fig. 7: 42 – “10 Untitled”]. Nevertheless, in spite of whatever references there might be to biological and organic features, the poeticism of her style takes precedence. The result can be likened to a perfectly studied, yet at the same time, spontaneous form of expression, in which consistency and the concept of the conscious choice of the linear point co-exist with the natural impulse of the hand. With unrestrained accuracy, patience and self-discipline, Diakomi draws organic complexes, the fruit of her imagination, thus shaping a soft environment that is in constant movement thanks to its linearity, which consists entirely of curves [Fig. 7: 43 -“14 Untitled”]. No angle serves to overshadow its aggressiveness. Her monochrome drawings spread like cells or labyrinthine tissues. By the energy of the line, its tension and its dynamic expression, Diakomi builds up her vocabulary of design, which is abstract in the extreme. Everything seems soft, light, far removed from any kind of monumentality. Her lines, like chords, are tensed, relax, and spread in elaborate frets. The delicacy and clarity of her lines, with their fluctuating tension, is a demonstration of her skill. We recall the episode that Pliny narrates of the competition between Apelles and Protogenes as to who could draw the finest line. With a minimum of means, Diakomi builds her personal vocabulary, which by a disciplined persistence enhances its linear organisms [Fig. 7: 44 – “16 Untitled”]. The complexities of lines are the result of a concentrated action that borders upon obsession, as it takes its starting-point from the minimal. Her monochrome drawings are in competition with the attractiveness of the timbres of her water-colours. Her vocabulary of design in its abstractiveness is full of tension and pulsation.
In parallel with her drawings, Diakomi applies to her works of sculpture the forms that result from her pencil. One sculpture is made of many fine wires like fibers that make the transition from the two to the three-dimensional. Hovering in this way, the work resembles a light primary tissue. The shadows that appear constitute perfect chiaroscuro. The other sculpture is of clay, wire, paper, copper piping and white gesso. On the white surface of this imperfect, primitive organism, she has intervened with a linear drawing in pencil [Fig. 7: 45 – “32 Untitled”]. Diakomi succeeds through the minimal in creating endless designs, not letting a single day pass without a line.