Zachary Zorbas

ARTIST STATEMENT

The oil paintings typically consist of Greece’s countryside, dramatic landscapes, seascapes, and romantic city scenes with wild sunsets.

They prompt the viewer to escape, be alone with nature while hearing the birds chirping and wind blowing through olive groves. Feel the warmth of sun-drenched beaches, the wonder of ancient archeological sites, and imagine the sights and sounds of a night out in the city. They are painted rapidly and vigorously with a lack of precise detail while focusing on effects rather than things. The canvas is meshed with short brushstrokes, some thin and abrupt, others thick and pastose, in fairly light shades.

The first ingredient to my work is my experience traveling and exploring. The second is the effects of atmosphere and dream memories—elements such as weather, light, and sound. Lastly, emotion is important—past experiences with love and loss.

Painting is a way of screaming out to the world, “Here I am! I love! I am scared of death and loss! Remember me!”. Life is so fleeting, I always feel like it is slipping away and one cannot grab a hold of it and control things. Painting is a way of stopping the time, capturing a loved moment and storing it. The added bonus is that you can then externalize and share it with loved ones and other people. 

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Philosophy

A mindset driven by the effects of and relationship between dreams, memories and life experiences. This style is a visual representation and result of this Dream Memories mindset. In this first volume, we take you through the journey of a Greek-American traveling back to Greece to discover the beauty of his ancestry and documents it through oil paintings.

Dreams have a close relationship with memories. They both live in the eternal, ethereal realm and push and pull our physical self and state of mind in different directions. An unlimited amount of dreams can be produced by our mind both sleeping and awake. Those dreams can motivate us to have life experiences that can turn into treasured memories. Arguably, the most treasured things life has to offer. They can fill us with a sense of satisfaction that we have lived a good life.
“Memory Eternal” is an exclamation used at the end of Eastern Orthodox memorial services. This is one way of praying that the soul has entered heaven and enjoys eternal life. Dream Memories is similar in that it is a way of making a “memory eternal” by externalizing the eternal. The purpose is to leave an artifact of life experience behind in a medium that can last a very long time such as oil painting. There are paintings as old as 40,800 years. These old paintings provide insight and connection of human life from past to future.

Dream Memories is about capturing fleeting, treasured moments and storing them in a personal way for a long time to share with other people. Living out our dreams and sharing them with others can inspire others to do the same and can create a snowball effect to improve the world.

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Biography

The Venetian Harbor of Chania, Crete was where Zachary was exploring when he gained the inspiration for his new series of paintings and the “Dream Memories” concept. The old town changes at night and the lighted walls reflect an ambiance of the past.  Maybe it was this characteristic that helped him realize what he wanted to devote his painting to. After a few years of learning the basics of painting and trying to find his style in different styles and mediums, Zac rediscovered his love for travel in Greece and his painting style was consolidated by a single inspiration and special connection to his ancestral homeland.

Zac began painting fairly recently at the age of 28. He started with abstracts and portraits before finding the landscape style he is known for today. Zorbas was involved in the visual arts since he was a child, however. As a boy he was drawing and coloring constantly and as early as 14 started practicing web and graphic design. He felt that in order to be the best visual designer possible, he would need experience in as many of the visual arts as possible. When Zachary began experimenting with acrylic painting, he immediately felt a special connection which grew as he got into oils.

At the age of 24, Zorbas travelled to many parts of Greece, inspired by landscapes and ancient history. Some favorites include the mosaics and temples which he incorporates in his work as well as being alone with the nature and dramatic landscapes. Zac's grandfather John Zorbas was also a big influence as he was a jazz musician in Athens. Zac had been dreaming about living in Greece since he was a young teen and finally decided to purchase a one-way ticket to Athens shortly after graduating from college. This was the start of a relationship that fueled his artwork which continues to this day. Zachary now lives on the island of Aegina where he finds endless inspiration and  is dedicated to exploring and painting Greece for the rest of his life.

 

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"Greece is a haven... I've been around the world, I've been to the most beautiful places in the world, none of them tops Greece. The land, the sky, the water, it's good for the soul, it's a healing place.

Tom Hanks

Gallery

FAQ

What paints do you use?

My favorite paints are made by Geneva Fine Art Supplies. I really like how these feel and how the medium is mixed in already which saves a lot of time.

Do you sell originals?

I might sell at a certain price but generally I am not trying to sell original work. I am saving them for a large exhibition at some point next year so I would prefer to just sell prints. I would love to share originals more with other people though so hopefully I will figure something  out.

How are you canvases prepared?

There is an art supply shop in Athens that I use for all my canvases. They have high-quality linen canvases with oil-based primer that I like. I believe in using high-quality cavases, brushes, and paints to increase the value of the experience with the artwork.

How long does it take to make a painting?

Usually each painting takes about a month at the moment. Some can take as little as a week and some even more such as three months. I am constantly trying to figure out how to make them faster but for me the most important thing is to work on it until I feel satisfied with the outcome.

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