Reportage: Depression Era

“A project that transforms the Greek crisis into a global state of being”

The Depression Era project is a collective of photographers, artists, researchers, writers, architects, journalists and curators formed in 2011, recording the Greek crisis through images and texts. It was originally inspired by the photographic program of the Farm Security Administration, which was designed to capture the impact of the Great Depression on the American people. Master-minder of the project is the photographer Pavlos Fysakis.

Text by Marinos Tsagkarakis
Edited by Chiara Costantino
Georges Salameh

Georges Salameh

The Project started inhabiting the urban and social landscapes of the crisis. It began as a collective experiment, picturing the Greek land, the private lives of outcasts, the collapse of Public systems, the emergence of the Commons and snapshots of the everyday life, aiming to understand and present the social, economic and historical transformation currently taking place in Greece.

Yorgos Prinos

Yorgos Prinos

Yiannis Hadjiaslanis

Yiannis Hadjiaslanis

Petros Koublis

Petros Koublis

The photographers of the Depression Era belong to that new generation of contemporary Greek artists who face the crisis with sensitivity and dynamism, acting with as clear a gaze as possible. One of the greatest advantages of DE’s artists is that they represent a wide range of variety in respect of photographic media, visual languages and aesthetic approaches, embodying personal view and emotion. The target is to get beyond the effects of economic crises attempting to transform all the cumulative energy and disappointment of Greek people into awareness and resistance. They suggest that we should not want “to understand but rather to collect the world”. The “collection” of the crisis is inexhaustible, unlimited and infinite. 

Petros Koublis

Petros Koublis

Pavlos Fysakis

Pavlos Fysakis

Olga Stefatou

Olga Stefatou

The quality of the project is provided by its proposed methods of collective expression, co-existence, shared coordination and widespread dialogue of cultures, besides its ambition to offer a reception of and a critical approach to crisis through the lens of the camera. In the end, what is perhaps most fascinating about this project for the non-Greek viewer is the ways in which the Depression Era understands its images and texts as not Greek, but European. The viewpoints it offers, whether through image or text, or video, give us all an idea of the shape of things to come. They also show ways of overcoming the limiting lines of crisis as a global state of being, a universal, collective turning point. 

Maria Mavropoulou

Maria Mavropoulou

Kostas Kapsianis

Kostas Kapsianis

Kostas Kapsianis

Kostas Kapsianis

Last November, Depression Era exhibited a big part of the project at the Benaki Museum in Athens. Moreover, parts of the project have already been showcased at the Bozar Center for Fine Arts in Brussels, at the Mois de la Photo in Paris, the European Month of Photography in Budapest, the PhotoBiennale of the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography and at Fotoistanbul – Beşiktaş International Festival of Photography.

Christos Kapatos

Christos Kapatos

Christos Kapatos

Christos Kapatos

Eirini Vourloumis

Eirini Vourloumis

Depression Era Project artists are:

Theofanis Avraam / Petros Babasikas / Georges Charisis / Georges Drivas / Pavlos Fysakis / Marina Gioti / Giorgos Gripeos / Yiannis Hadjiaslanis/ Zoe Hatziyannaki / Harry Kakoulidis / Christos Kapatos / Kostas Kapsianis / Panos Kiamos / Petros Koublis / Nikandre Koukoulioti / Tassos Langis / Maria Louka / Maria Mavropoulou / Dimitris Michalakis / Giorgos Moutafis / Yorgos Prinos / Christina Psarra / Dimitris Rapakousis / Georges Salameh / Spyros Staveris / Olga Stefatou / Angela Svoronou / Vaggelis Tatsis / Yiannis Theodoropoulos / Marinos Tsagkarakis / Dimitris Tsoumplekas / Lukas Vasilikos / Pasqua Vorgia / Chrissoula Voulgari / Eirini Vourloumi.

(Images ©)

More about them and about Depression Era Project here


marinos_tsagkarakis

Marinos Tsagkarakis was born (1984) and raised in the island of Crete, in Southern Greece. He studied contemporary photography at STEREOSIS Photography School, in Thessaloniki, Greece. He is a member of the collective “Depression Era” that inhabits the urban and social landscapes of the economic crisis in his home country. His work has been featured in numerous exhibitions and international festivals, including Mois De La Photo in Paris, European Month of Photography and Fotoistanbul. Moreover, he has exhibited his photographs in important art spaces such as Benaki Museum (Athens), Museo de Bogotá (Colombia) and several galleries in Canada, USA and Europe.

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