Nikos Samartzidis was born in 1957 in the Pella prefecture of Macedonia, in Northern Greece, but was raised in Athens and Thessaloniki.
Already as a high-school student he spends his free time painting. He took two years of formal classes on drawing after graduating from high school in 1975. In 1977, he became a participating artist in a small art workshop run by G. Spanoudakis in Thessaloniki, Greece, where he experimented in art. In search for his self, he traveled to Crete and came into contact with the landscape of the Aegean Sea. It charmed him so much that he remained there for three years (1979-82), although he was often obliged to work as a farmhand to earn his living…
He spent the years between 1982 and 1986 in Thessaloniki and worked as a professional potter. However, his desire to “return to nature” and his nostalgia for the outdoors and the sea made him transfer his activities in 1987 to the beautiful village of Horto, located on the picturesque Mt. Pelion, in central Greece. Besides his work in pottery, he started painting in Chinese ink, and tempera and acrylic paints. His subjects, which include Greek landscapes, especially the islands and the sea, often seem to materialize through a tranquil evening light.
Nikos Samartzidis has been living in Germany since 1990. The physical distance from his country of origin has had a catalytic effect in his art. Thus, after a late-blooming interest in ancient Greek pottery and Byzantine art, he is continuing his personal quest by exploring the options and limitations of modern artistic trends. During the last few years, he has been studying ancient Greek scripts, especially the Cretan-Mycenaean Linear B, from an art historical viewpoint. Further he is a member of the “Malkasten” Artists’ Union of the German city of Rüsselsheim.