It all started with the idea to present an online portfolio featuring Greek women artists from different generations whose work relates to that of Klonaris/Thomadaki.
It was not an easy task as not only did the two artists produce a unique and personal body of work, but also co-signing art together as a female couple seems remarkable. Having as a starting point the Cinéma of the Body, a personal film genre they coined, my research soon opened up and led to a series of acquaintances and happy coincidences.
The term “Synaphai (Connexities)” signifies a state of connection and is borrowed from a concerto written by composer and architect Iannis Xenakis, whose work intrigued Klonaris/Thomadaki. Five handpicked artists working in different fields are brought together in this online section in order to tell a collective story via photos and text. Some of these women’s lives intersect with those of Klonaris/Thomadaki, bringing to light interesting commonalities. Others find links with them indirectly based on their conceptual approach and artistic process. All of them have, at some point, been confronted with questions of (self)identity, deracination and homecoming.
Antoinetta Angelidi’s emblematic films deal with women and the uncanny. Despina Meimaroglou, born in Alexandria, reflects upon violence, the fragility of human life and homeland. Catherina Papaiacovou, gives her own contemporary version of ancient Greek tragedy. Leda Dokoumetzidi’s costume designs and installations fabricate hand-crafted embroideries of body and skin. Finally, Christina Thomopoulos’ films, photos and performances engage in an activist research on the female body, cultural identity and exile.
Overall, this online portfolio, by association and juxtaposition, invites the reader to consider less apparent aspects of Klonaris/Thomadaki’s work. Just as importantly, it illustrates my personal experience with inspiring people in a moment of coming back home.
Eleni Tranouli, 2016
Eleni Tranouli is an independent art critic, based in Athens. She holds a Diploma in Architecture and an MA in Cinema and Audiovisual studies from the University of Sorbonne, Paris 3. She has collaborated with artists Jackie Raynal and Alejandra Riera and has been a Stavros Niarchos fellow in the Department of Film at The Museum of Modern Art in New York. She has written for La Furia Umana, Revista lumière, The International Journal of Screendance and Le Magazine du Jeu de Paume.
The author wishes to extend her sincere gratitude to all the artists featured in this section : Antoinetta Angelidi, Despina Meimaroglou, Catherina Papaiacovou, Leda Dokoumetzidi and Christina Thomopoulos. Sincere thanks are also to Stamatis Schizakis, Costis, Théo Deliyannis, Sklavis Films Co. and the Contemporary Greek Art Institute where part of this research was completed. Finally, special thanks are due to Sally Martin Katz for her careful reading.