Artwork & Exhibits
2023 Featured Capitol History Gateway Program Virtual Exhibit
Master Penworks of Tom Stefopoulos: The Hellenic Artist of the Lovejoy Columns
Athanasios (Tom) Efthimiou Stefopoulos was a factory worker, railroad man, commercial artist, and a champion penman. Art was his first love but pursuing this was difficult for a young immigrant in an adopted country where he did not even speak the language. In 1945, he was employed by the Spokane, Portland & Seattle Railroad to work as a crossing watchman under the Lovejoy Ramp of the Broadway Bridge in Portland, Oregon. It was here that the artist created the iconic “Lovejoy Columns." This exhibition considers the range of Stefopoulos' art, from pen drawings to the murals that graced the Lovejoy Columns. His style is a unique blend of calligraphic lines and Art Nouveau, and his themes span Ancient Greek philosophy to contemporary world events. In style and in theme, Stefopoulos blended a myriad of influences, a result of a life lived in multiple places and among many people. Despite a life that was characterized by movement and synthesis, however, the Lovejoy Columns represent a sense of belonging to specific place—in this case, to Oregon. Stefopoulos' art gives insight into how the artist envisioned himself in this new home.
This exhibit, presented by Hellenic-American Cultural Center and Museum, was awarded a Capitol History Gateway Exhibit Sponsorship in 2022, which is funded by the Oregon State Capitol Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit organization.
Please explore the panel below and arrow on the right to advance the panels.