Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Maedchenland - Athens Photo Festival

 

Maedchenland, by Karolin Kluppel, as part of Athens Photo Festival, Benaki Museum, Pireos, Athens.

Kluppel travelled to India to take these delightful photographs of girls. In the state of Meghalaya, the indigenous people of the Khasi constitute the majority of the population. The Khasi are a matrilineal society and the line of succession passes through the youngest daughter. If she marries, her husband is taken into her family's house and the children take their mother's name. This guarantees girls and women in Meghalaya a unique economic and social independence unlike the rest of India. To disrespect a woman in the Khasi culture means to harm the society. A family with just sons is considered unlucky, because only daughters can assure the continuity of a clan.
 
Between 2013 and 2015 Kluppel spent ten months in the Khasivillage of Mawlynnong in North East India, a village of just 95 dwellings. She photographed girls 'attempting to achieve a balance between documentation and composition'.
 
 



























Sunday, 24 July 2016

Sites of Memory - Young Greek Photographers

 
'The past will have been worked through only when the causes of what happened then have been eliminated. Only because the causes continue to exist does the captivating spell of the past remain to this day unbroken'. Theodor W. Adorno.
 
 
 

Sites of Memory, Young Greek Photographers, at the Benaki Museum, Pireos, Athens.
 
The exhibition Sites of Memory presents a series of recent works by contemporary Greek photographers who address the subject of collective historical memory as well as its ambivalent coexistence with oblivion. Whether recording contemporary sites in which dramatic events of Greek history have taken place, or focusing on people and personal narratives, these works demonstrate that memory should not be conceived exclusively as binding us in some deep sense to past times, but as a mode of representation belonging to the present.



Simos Saltiel:



Karatasou Camp


Paris Petridis:

The photographs below were accompanied by testimonies of people who were incarcerated, or were witnesses to the events that happened at these locations. Some were heartbreaking, particularly the ones of torture.




Vardari Square, the old National Security building in Athens. Here, thousands of political prisoners were incarcerated, tortured and murdered between the onset of the Civil War and the end of the Colonels' dictatorship.




Arrianou and Olympou in Athens. Here, the poet Manolis Anagnostakis kept watch as his partisan comrades executed fascist collaborators during the Greek Civil War.

 


Hippocrome Square. Here, at the Hippodrome, the guard of the emperor Theodosius massacred thousands of Thessalonians in the spring of 390 AD

 
 

Troon and Adrastrou Str., where the brutal attack on the unionist Konstantina Kouvena took place (juxtaposed with her testimony to the public prosecutor, which I have not included. However I have written about Kouneva before, and you can read about it  here )
 
 
 


Tzavella and Mesologious Str., where 15-year old Alexandros Grigoropoulos was shot dead by a policeman in December 6, 2008, when he went to Exarheia in Athens to celebrate his birthday (juxtaposed with an eyewitness testimony, which I have not included).




60 Panagi Tsaldari Str. where the anti-fascist activist rapper Killah P (Pavlos Fyssas) was murdered by the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn in September 2013. You can read more about this here . The trial of Fyssas' killer is going on at present.


 
 

Friday, 22 July 2016

Young Greek Photographers



Young Greek Photographers at the Benaki Museum, Pireos Street, Athens.


Katerina Tsakiri - Family Affair
 
'Family affair is an attempt to portray female stereotypes in Greek society. These images are the product of my childhood experiences. I returned to the house where I spent the first years of my life recalling memories in an effort to understand the formation of my identity through a symbolic mirror. My eyes are closed so as to inhabit the space where these memories exist and were (re)born'.
 













 
 
Chloe Kritharas-Devienne: 

'These pictures are part of a project that deals with the refugee crisis. Most of them are portraits that I took during their journey through Greece and during their stay in various camps, in which I worked as a volunteer. My goal was to focus on people's faces in peaceful moments and to approach them with respect and kindness. As time passed by, through trust and understanding, I got closer to them. It was important to hear their stories and to learn as much as I could about their journey. I also wanted to avoid capturing them in moments of misery and I preferred to emphasise their optimism, even when the circumstances would not allow them to be optimistic. And although the word refugee is frequently used to refer to a mass of people moving through Europe, as if they have no individual characteristics, every one of them is a unique person with their own dreams for the future'.



 
 
 













Giannis Papanikos:

'2015 will be remembered as the year of the peak of the refugee crisis. I was asked to manage the migration flow coming from the Middle East and Asia. People streamed to the small border village of Idomeni, trying to pass through a two metre gap in the territory of FYROM so as to continue to their final destination, Northern Europe. These images describe the situation that prevailed in Idomeni when the European Union decided to put a limit to the flow of refugees'.


















Maria Mavropoulou:

'The crisis consists precisely because the old is dying and the new cannot be born. In this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear'. Antonio Gransci.
 
'In this stagnant space, in this gap between eras, familiar Greek landscapes look bizarre, cut off from the real world... The horizon is hidden behind thick fog preventing us to see what's yet to come. Empty highways, solar panels, rotten watermelons and torn flags seem stuck in an intermediate state, portraying the current situation like distorted symbols of a bygone era'.







 
 
 


 
Io Chariava:
 
 










 
Fani Bitou, (part of the Penelope installation  (2013):












 


Monday, 18 July 2016

It's all lies, by Natassa Poulantza

 
 
 
It's All Lies, by Natassa  Poulantza, at Zoumboulakis Gallery, Kolonaki Square, Athens.
 
 
 
 
 
This is an interesting exhibition which I enjoyed. The exhibition comprises two sections plus the digital game-application-work 'Game of Fortune'.
 
In the first section (Out of Season Encounters) Poulantza appropriates works of well-known artists and paints them anew (acrylic on canvas) making copies. She then digitally prints  portraits of famous figures (poets, writers, philosophers) over the painted surface. The overlaying of the paintings with the digital prints cancels them out and transforms them into something completely new.
 
The second section (Missing Piece) derives from the first section and consists of unique digital prints on paper.
 
I found the whole exercise really interesting even though I was disappointed that, with the exception of one woman, all the subjects portrayed were men,  as were the artists that were appropriated.
 
 
Out of Season Encounters and Missing Piece:
 
 
 

Stalin - Lenin - Kalinin - Jackson Pollock (acrylic and digital print on canvas) (Out of Season Encounters)




Stalin - Lenin - Kalinin - Jackson Pollock  (digital print on paper) (missing piece)




Nina Simone - Roy Lichtenstein




Nina Simone - Roy Lichtenstein




Marcel Proust - Barnett Newman




Marcel Proust - Barnett Newman
 
 


Oscar Wilde - Natassa Poulantza (after Willelm de Kooning)




Oscar Wilde - Natassa Poulantza (after Willelm de Kooning)




Friedrich Wittgenstein - Natassa Poulantza (after Gerhard Richter)




Friedrich Wittgenstein - Natassa Poulantza (after Gerhard Richter)

 
 


Andre Breton - Mark Rothko
 
 


Andre Breton - Mark Rothko




Arthur Rimbaud - Andy Warhol
 
 
 

Arthur Rimbaud - Andy Warhol
 
 



William Burroughs - Gerhard Richter
 
 
 

William Burroughs - Gerhard Richter
 
 


Dylan Thomas - Vincent van Gogh




Dylan Thomas - Vincent van Gogh
 
 


Friedrich Nietzsche - Gerhard Richter
 
 
 

Friedrich Nietzsche - Gerhard Richter






Walter Benjamin - Caspar David Friedrich




Walter Benjamin - Caspar David Friedrich
 
 


Albert Camus - Natassa Poulantza (after de Kooning)
 
 


Albert Camus - Natassa Poulantza (after de Kooning)
 
 
 


Vladimir Mayakovsky - William Turner





Vladimir Mayakovsky - William Turner


 




Game of Fortune:

The digital game-application-work 'Game of Fortune' is referring to the game of chance known as 'slot machine' or 'fruit machine', and invites the viewer's participation.

The application user presses the game's start button and the images begin to roll until they fix themselves into a random combination. A unique print signed by the artist is produced when the random combination of images on the computer screen reaches a satisfactory arrangement to the user.The resulting print is for sale.




 

 


Virginia Woolf



Sergei Eisenstein
 
 


William S. Burroughs



Hannah Arendt


Apologies for the quality of some of my photographs - reflection on glass is unavoidable.