“To the faraway, wild mountains…” This was the quote of actress Georgia Vassiliadou in an old Greek movie, where she tried to break the curse of the “evil eye” (“to kako mati”) tormenting a little boy. The “evil eye” is a belief that some people are capable of causing harm and destructing others, living creatures and even inanimate objects, through their powerful and damaging gaze. People use various means of protection to deflect the “evil eye”, the blue eye-shaped amulet being the most popular. But what has to be protected nowadays, and from whom?
The greatest catastrophe we are experiencing today is none other than the one caused to Nature. Appropriating the story of the “evil eye”, I create a series of drawings of eyes to act as amulets in an attempt to protect Nature against those who are destroying it. These apotropaic eyes symbolize a desperate effort to defend Mother Earth and the freedom that She represents.
I was asked to present an artwork during the Greek Film Festival in Berlin related to the celebration of the 200 years since the outbreak of the Greek revolution of 1821 and the War of independence. In the meanwhile Turkey sent the seismic exploitation Oruç Reis, escorted by warships, to probe the seabed in an area contested by it and Greece in search of Hydrocarbons, provoking a surge in tensions between both countries:
But who is really profiting from all this? What is the role of foreign intermediaries? One is sure, the exploitation of energy resources in the region has nothing to do with a Shared Green Prosperity.
Looking at the Oruç Reis on the MarineTraffic, I saw two ships called Georgoulis. In a local newspaper of Kalymnos island (KalymnosNews in Google Translate) I found a text about mr. Manolis Georgoulis, a traditional swordfish fisherman. While describing the significance of his occupation he mentions: “We have asked the Port Authority to give us the coordinates of the Turkish NAVTEX. We do not want to be in the exercise. All August we had the ‘Uruc Reis’ in front of us…” At that moment mr. Manolis became someone important for me, someone who wants to fish and doesn’t want to be bothered by those playing political games at the cost of Nature. Against them and what they represent in a global scale, I started making these apotropaic eyes/amulets.
My personal contribution.