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'The Truth is in the Soil' Solo Exhibition by Ioanna Sakellaraki

GALERIE ERSTERERSTER | OPENING & ARTIST TALK: 7TH OCT 2020 7 PM | ON VIEW: 8TH - 13TH OCTOBER 2020 11 AM - 18 PM | CURATED BY MAYA HRISTOVA | FACEBOOK EVENT | Im Rahmen des EMOP - EUROPEAN MONTH OF PHOTOGRAPHY 2020

The Truth is in the Soil

Greece is home to a tradition of ritual lament that dates back to ancient times. Considered an art, moirologia, can be traced to the choirs of the Greek tragedies, in which the principal singer would begin the mourning and the chorus would follow. Over the centuries, it became a profession exclusive to women. Those who were especially adept at this improvisation, and could endure the physical and emotional traumas of the work, were hired by families to lead in the ritual lament. Today in the villages of Mani Peninsula of southern Greece, live some of the last professional mourners of the country.

Ioanna Sakellaraki, graduate from the Royal College of Art and finalist of the Inge Morath Award, is one of the most prominent representatives of a young generation of Greek image makers and this is her first solo exhibition in Berlin. After the loss of her father, her photographic practice transformed into means of understanding and living with her own grief. Upon returning to her homeland she began examining how grief is lived there as a communal, shared experience of loss.

Curated by Maya Hristova, this retrospective brings together for the first time all parts of Sakellaraki’s continuously evolving series “The Truth is in the Soil”. Photography, video performance and traditional hand-stitched embroidery, all come together to subtly reveal aspects of the artist’s ambivalent relationship with the eerie world of tradition in her homeland.

"I see the image as it being there to affirm the disappearance of a moment, a moment of a human turned into an object for observation after he is gone; this unformed nothingness called death. I abandon myself to what I see, and I feel so powerless and muted by it. I use my eyes to see but I see to also imagine. I imagine through the image. The image becomes the passageway between a liminal space of presence and absence, a resolution to the question of becoming through loss. I exile myself into the illusions of the image, looking for a world to resemble my dreaming."

 

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