John Christoforou (1921 – 2014)
John Christoforou was born in London in 1921. He was a French painter of Greek heritage. John Christoforou never knew his mother, who died shortly after he was born. In 1930, he left Greece with his father. An orphan by the age of 11, his neighbour was the first to notice his talent for drawing. He studied at the Athens School of Fine Arts and went back to England where he joined the Royal Air Force for five years. He turned to painting in 1946 and had his first exhibition in London in 1949, at the Twenty Brook Street Gallery.
John Christoforou married his wife Ruth in 1956 and they both settled in Paris. From then, he started working with Galerie Rive Gauche until it closed. Christoforou is considered to be an instigator of the « Nouvelle Figuration » artistic movement. In 1974, two retrospective exhibitions of his works took place. One at the Randers Kunstmuseum, in Denmark – where over a hundred of his works were displayed – and the other at the Musée Galliéra, in Paris.
His expressionistic and tormented works explore various themes, such as crucifixions, angels, childbirths, scarecrows, etc.
He died in 2014 at the Le Kremlin-Bicêtre Hospital.
« In this hopeless, decadent, miserable, evil, poetryless and soulless world we live in, it is rather surprising that there still is a shade of something which looks like Art… »