Your Word is Bond: Christos Pantieras


Po et ry 

Websters Dictionary describes it as the following:

“Writing that formulates a concentrated imaginative awareness of experience in language chosen and arranged to create a specific emotional response through its meaning, sound and rhythm.”


I believe this to be a fitting description for ‘Your Word is Bond’.

A powerful new exhibition on display at Ottawa Art Gallery (2 Daly Ave).


The exhibition is comprised of 4 inter-related installations stitched together thematically through words… recalled conversations, correspondence and eventual demise of past relationships all extraordinarily arranged by Ottawa artist Christos Pantieras.


Having had the pleasure of sharing post secondary schooling with Christos at the University of Ottawa’s BFA program, I was privy to the poetry and narrative of his older artwork. His pieces at that time were informed by his Hellenic upbringing and were incredibly personal and nostalgic. I was also witness to his process and as Peter Simpson points out in his article today (see link below), Christos is also incredibly patient.


I remember him exactly this way too, working quietly away in a dimly lit studio, methodically, serenely. The Pantieras aesthetic was being honed even then; monochromatic, corporeal and intimate with an intuitive ability to combine materials as much for their texture as for their visual and physical weight.


What Christos chooses to do with these materials is just as remarkable. Although the original functionality has been detached, the new embodied spirit is transcendent - even in it’s vulnerability. In ‘Your Word is Bond’, chairs are stripped, desks are re-configured, paper dipped in wax takes on a transparent, luminous - almost skin like quality. All are exquisitely lit with a candlelit vigil ambiance.

One feels as though, if you sat with them long enough to quiet your mind, these pieces might whisper a profound secret to you. Indeed as in the case of his wax brick wall “I miss talking to you” it will… if you share even a fraction of the patience this artist possesses.


Christos’ narrative is deeply personal but it does not belong to the artist alone. It is yours and it is mine. You already know this conversation, this place, this time, but you can’t quite put your finger on it. His work is a fleeting dream, a hazy conversation between lovers, a cobweb that floats across your face on a summer day, a dandelion seed on a breeze that refuses to be caught between your fingers. ‘Your Word is Bond’ exemplifies the epitome of ephemeral.

from Greek εφήμερος – ephemeros, literally "lasting only one day"… except in this case thankfully, the work of this exquisite Ottawa artist is on display until September 9th

Visit the artist's website:

The Ottawa Art Gallery, Arts Court, 2 Daly Avenue, Ottawa<br>22 June - 9 September 2012, Opening Reception: 21 June 2012