19.06.2019 - The Meadow of the Ephemeral IV

19/6 –23/6/19. Photography Center of Thessaloniki is organizing every 2 years a four-day residence / art workshop, in the village Livadi (Meadow) (Thessaloniki Prefecture).In this workshop would create artwork using materials collected from the surrounding area.

Participants are: Gladys (FR), Lara Vrettou, Mikhail Pogarsky (RU), Thodoris Lalos, Fani Lalou, Thanassis Raptis, Vassilis Karkatselis, Kaiti Papanaoum, Vassilis Alexandrou, Efthimis Mouratidis, Giannis Monogios, Stavros Panagiotakis, Kostas Koumlis, Stavros Oikonomakos, Fusun Selen Bilginer (TR), Nilden Aksoy (TR), Stefania Beldemiri, Dimitris Palantzas

On Wednsday 19/6 the participants will present their work

On Thursday 20/6, 20.00', two lectures have been organised under the title 'The Ephemeral in Art" with Maria Kenanidou, Art Historian and Giorgos Tsakiris, Professor of Faculty of Fine Arts of Aristotle University.

On Friday 21st of June,20.30', live buzuki night at the garden!

On Saturday, 5pm, Kosta and Stavros with the other artists are organizing artistic workshop in the nature for the children of the village.

On Saturday 22/6, 8pm, we shall celebrate together with the people of the village and also the visitors 'Klithonas' with fires and live traditional music

On Sunday 23rd of June. Opening and guided tour in the art works.

With the suport of Municipality of Thermi and the co-operation of Local Community of Livadi and the Cultural Association of Livadi. 



Photography and ephemeral art

Since 2013 -and every 2 years- artists from all over Europe are hosted at the highland village Livadi (a few kilometers out of Thessaloniki/ Greece) where they participate in a 5days symposium-workshop dedicated to ephemeral art. They create their artistic work in a private, fenced place next to the forest, using mostly materials they find at the surrounding area as well as their own materials they bring with them. Dirt, stones, water, organics, like pieces of wood or leaves, but industrial products as well, like metal, wires, cement, wooden constructions, fabrics, photos. These works have the character of ephemeral, as they gradually are being absorbed by nature. The transformation of the works is being captured photographically in all stages and consequently as different works - or as pieces of their rescued parts - they can be classified in the creation of the artists of the next events, years after!

Ephemeral art is characterized as the art which, from the beginning of the concept and creation doesn't have the preservation of the work in the long run as a priority - e.g. something that the artist wishes for his artistic work for sale. The ephemeral character of a work, especially when it is enrolled in nature with materials of the direct environment, partly defines both the life style of the artist and the way he practices his art and some elements of the form of the work its self as well. The artist enters into an existential dilemma, as he has to overcome his narcissism and to accept the fact that his work will be absorbed by nature and won't be the vehicle to his "immortality".

The ephemeral art is immortalized by photography, which gives another kind of life to the ephemeral work, as it is communicated through time to its public and to history. The ephemeral artistic work is build -we see it/it exists- for some time and soon, for various reasons it is disappeared , deteriorated and this is an indivisible part of an existence circle which has been pre-calculated during its creation. Photography is -by need- an indivisible and quantifiable part during the procedure of production, a necessary and supplementary means in order to realize the absolute circle of creation-corrosion, it is the side tool of transmission of the art of ephemeral.

Because of the character of the ephemeral which characterizes the works of artists of ephemeral e.g. Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Julian Beaver and Andy Goldsworthy, photography takes decisive role in immortalizing its temporary presence, dynamics, beauty, or concerns that the compositions/installations exude. As Goldsworthy himself said: "Each work is developed, survives, is decomposed, part of a circle which photography can show us extensively, underlining actually and featuring the moment when the work has the most vividness ..."

We can realize how important and necessary is to see the (authentic) ephemeral art for as long as it exists and at the place it has been created, from the moment we will conceive that the work will not be there and as it is, forever. Through photography all these short presence pieces /works can be documented and shared with the next generations, not only as history but as a question as well, concerning the mission of art, its means, the issues and the questions which art poses to contemporary artists and its self as well.

Thanassis Raptis – Photographer President of Photography Center of Thessaloniki