A Voyage Within
Written by Xenia Georgiadou
Patchwork capes, stunning doulamas, black felt pirpiri coats, linen shirts with embroidered sleeves and floral
kimonos captivate viewers at “A Voyage Within” – an exhibition by Vangelis Kyris and Anatoli Georgiev.
Curated by Erica Vassiliou and presented at Kalamata’s “Victoria G. Karelia” Greek Costume Collection, the exhibition
can be interpreted as a series of crystallized impressions from the renowned photographer’s travels – imaginary and
real – around the world, or even as his interpretation of the management and renewal of tradition. Dressed in
traditional garbs from Asia and Africa all the way to the mountain villages of Epirus and the Dodecanese,
models pose with an air of melancholy or even pride in their gaze before the lens of the iconoclastic artist.
The photographs are then printed, thus assuming the physical presence of paintings,
before Anatoli Georgiev intervenes to embroider the printed
canvases, creating details of flowers, spirals, birds, ships and
many more elements typically found on the traditional garments of each land.
Nevertheless, the result is miles ahead of mere folklore representation,
offering an exceptional example of how tradition can take on a primary
role in modern aesthetics. The two arts intertwine, creating 47 unique portraits that shake
our certainties regarding what is truly modern.