Artist's description:

A Kiss a magical expression of love and represented in art in many forms throughout history.
This is Theo's interpretation bringing it up to date.
And as a customer quoted on Theo's website, defining his style.
' The most iconic of Theo's works. The romance of the fifty's with the most ancient of backgrounds. Signifies the birth of democracy together with the birth of modern free thinking.' Andreas Economou April 21, 2016

Many of Theo's paintings have inspired short stories, and here is one written by Theo.

A Kiss Is Just A Kiss.

I couldn’t help overhearing… No, that’s a lie, I was making it my business to overhear. I edged closer to the couple – they were standing in front of the Acropolis. The man stood tall, gaunt with his trilby hat and red tie, she was a vision in crimson.
Me? I was playing the tourist, snapping away at the ruins.
I heard him say, ‘This monument, it just leaves me in awe.’ He turned to his companion and she smiled at him – she couldn’t have been more than 25.

‘I feel the same,’ she said, ‘to think this civilization gave birth to democracy as we know it.’
He interrupted her, ‘One can only imagine the speeches held in this place that formed ideas for future generations to this day.’
Personally, I had no interest in these overrated, broken down columns that had seen better days. I was more interested in the couple and in particular the black suitcase by their feet.

They kissed passionately, like long lost lovers that hadn’t seen each other for an eternity. Well, he had been locked up for five years, managing to escape exactly one week ago. True to his word, he took the rap and she took the cash and, with five years to plan his escape, this was their arranged rendezvous. It was my job to know these things. I was a journalist and a good one at that.
They were travelling under fake passports and had managed to keep one step ahead of the law. I had inside information from my boss and had managed to track the couple down to here. Working for a major newspaper, information came to me quite easily. I had hatched a plan to make a few bucks, but I had to play to his vanity if I had any chance of success.
I saw him looking at me out of the corner of his eye.
‘Hey you,’ he waved a finger at me. I froze. Had I ventured too close? ‘How ‘bout a photo of me and my girl?’ He smiled agreeably. I breathed a huge sigh of relief.
‘I was admiring your camera, that’s pretty fancy.’ He reached over for it. His jacket pulled open a little and I caught sight of the colt .45 nestled in a shoulder holster. I acted like I hadn’t, but it was too late. I looked up and the barrel was three inches from my face.
‘Why the hell are you following me?’ he hissed.

‘Wait, wait,’ was all I could stammer. I had to catch my breath. I swallowed hard, ‘I know who you are.’
His eyes narrowed. I knew I had to come clean, ‘I know all about your robberies. I know you were the perpetrator of much of the organized crime five years back.’
He almost looked proud of himself.
I continued, ‘I know you turned to crime after your parents died and left you homeless.’ His face turned dark. Shit! I was losing him. My voice went up an octave but I pushed on, ‘Yes, you could kill me in the blink of an eye, but I’m here to make you a proposal.’
Now I was talking his language. He relaxed a little, nodded for me to go on. ‘I want to write your life story. Your reputation can live on. This capitalistic system has been abused by big businesses and government officials for too long. Someone has to speak out against such an uncaring system and that someone is you. It hasn’t escaped the people’s attention just how much money you’ve thrown back to the poor. Like a modern Robin Hood, your story needs to be told.’

My plan was working. I could see he was thinking it over.
He lowered his gun. He reached over to the suitcase and opened it, and as I suspected, it was full of hundred dollar bills. He pulled out five thousand dollars, waved the wad under my nose, they smelled crisp and new.
A wry smile appeared on his face. ‘You consider yourself smart, don’t you Vincent?’

How the hell did he know my name?

‘You work for the Daily Trumpet, it’s always been your main job. As a young man you were arrested for three misdemeanours. You went straight after getting caught with stolen goods in a car park ten years back. You’ve thrown yourself into your job after losing your wife in a fatal car accident. Your boss is Peter Falco and I arranged for him to assign you the task of covering my story.’
He slid his gun back into the holster as he continued, ‘Did you honestly think that you succeeded when the police failed? Hah! Truth is, no one follows me unless I allow it. Turns out you’ve been working for me a lot longer than you can imagine.’
I was stunned, my heart was pounding, it was all true, how transparent my life has become, he had me figured all along. The money was still in his hand and I couldn’t take my eyes of the notes.
‘Take it’, he said. ‘I hate to disappoint you but you’re no different to anyone else. We’re all motivated either by fear or greed, and you, my friend, are driven by both. You will write my biography, but it’s going to be under my terms.’
‘Of course, but I want to portray you as the modern Bonnie & Clyde.’ I insisted. He seemed to like that and he immediately struck a pose with his arm around his lady. She mimicked holding a machine gun pointing at his chest, reminiscent of Bonny Elizabeth Parker during the Great Depression. I had read him right, after all, he was thrilled by the thought of infamy. We had a deal. I took the money and hastily stuffed the notes into my coat pocket.
‘Well, how about a kiss with your girl for the book.’ I proposed. They embraced and I took the shot.
That’s now the cover of our best-seller. Wherever he is now, he is still making money from crime, taking the hard-earned cash from those folks who have a fascination for the macabre.
Funny, the idea for the book started on the steps of the Acropolis – a symbol of democracy for over 2500 years. After all these centuries, look where it has led us.

Materials used:

high quality professional oil colours

A Kiss Is Just A Kiss (2012)


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This artwork is sold by Theo Michael from Cyprus

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