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17 Oct – 17 Nov 2019
Benaki Museum/Pireos 138
Icebergs From Genesis to Extinction

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Icebergs faultlessly exemplify a celebration of random wandering and ceaseless transformation. The mysterious, often solitary, journey of theirs into waters recon twofold personality- above and below the sea level, deifying not only the power of prendre l’ eau, but, also, their importance in the climate change.

In his exhibition Icebergs from Genesis to Extinction, Fokion Zissiadis showcases, in a powerful way, the serenity of the seemingly empyrean journey of icebergs in Greenland’s frigid waters, while all elements involved emerge, at the same time, taut on the surface of his photographs.

The detail plethora which Fokion’s photographs encompass, conjointly with the large scale- mostly of his black and white works, function primarily, along with their nonpareil configurations, in an abstractive way, brewing up, as oxymoron it might be, a narrative of stark quality.

This unadorned act of narrating is the measure of how Fokion uses the lens, as to confute the very limits of the medium of photography in order to upsurge the artistic composition. This kind of depiction, discharged of any implementation standards, creates a protean form of sentimental intensity, which “pulsates” between feelings of serene gratification and a stance anew toward the sensitive issues of nature’s custodianship.

Hence, the photographs of his icebergs, with their crystalline fragility and their awesomeness- in the like of a marble building, are what they depict, they do not work as metaphors, they do not differentiate their meaning. They constitute the testimony of an audacious artist-explorer who hands the viewer into beauty, quality, flawlessness, to the resultant of the non-perishable to the destructible, with a geometry of lines pure and pared-down, with transparent, yet dramatic, a lighting.

Fokion’s lens is inspired by the icebergs’ choreography- both above and below the sea, which, as a transcriber, forges the artist’s angle, refines his vision. In the process of his poetics, Fokion combines the dynamics of his personality with art, documents a life with no walls; he directs or, rather, stages by constructing the accuracy of his shot, so that his pictures to render the silence within the silence, as walled in the water- an iceberg’s main component, all through the moment it would violently erupt and break loose.

Fokion’s photographs are straightforward and clean-cut. They are not submissive. They reflect Susan Sontag’s belief in photography as the ultimate paradigm of an inherently equivocal connection between self and world.

Stavros Kavalaris


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