Konstantinos Volanakis
Pushing out to sea
oil on canvas glued on wood
50 x 87 cm
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In this work, Volanakis focuses mainly on human activity and chooses to depict a snapshot of the daily life of fishermen. His depictions usually focus on scenes of fishing with nets or torches, but this time he chooses a phase of the fishing boat’s preparation before the fishing begins. In addition, the main subject takes up almost the entire surface of the painting, having been painted on a large scale, and allows little space for the description of the surrounding scenery. The scene takes place in the shallow waters of a bay. Near a sandy beach with moored boats, Volanakis depicts fishermen toiling to push a fishing sailboat into the water. The detailed rendering of this particular moment is impressive; three men with their feet in the water pushing the boat hard towards the sea. Two are pushing with their hands and one with his back, while a fourth man on deck is holding the rudder. Their figures are reflected on the water and, together with the boat’s shadow, colour the sea accordingly.


Marilena Z. Kassimati (curator), Constantinos Volanakis: Poet of the Sea, exhibition catalogue, Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation, Hellenic Maritime Museum, Athens 2009, pp. 140-141, 183 (1864-1883).

Takis Mavrotas (curator), Constantinos Volanakis: The Father of Greek Seascape Painting, exhibition catalogue, B&M Theocharakis Foundation for the Fine Arts, Athens 2018, p. 53.

Thodoris Koutsogiannis (curator), Constantinos Volanakis: Nostos of the Sea. Artworks from the Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation collection, exhibition catalogue, Municipal Art Gallery of Chania, pp. 84-85.

Sotheby’s / London, The Greek Sale, 10/05/2007.

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