Earlier this year, Paphos again made its mark in the photography world with its Months Of Photography Paphos programs. Now, Paphos will once more be the site of yet another great photo program which will result in a catalog and an exhibition in Pafos in December 2017.
‘HOME’ is an ongoing photographic project organized by the ex-Artis Cultural Association in Cyprus and is based on the collaboration of photographers from different cultural orientations under the guidance of talented specialists of photography. The project started on the 27th of June 2017 in Drousia, a village in the Pafos district in Cyprus, as a residence and workshop for 5 days. Twelve photographers had the opportunity to learn from two experts of photography: Jason Eskenazi (USA) and Achilles Nasios (Sweden) who introduced them into a dialogue and a process of self-awareness, linked to their cultural expertise, to re-define the idea of ‘home’. Photographers from Pafos, Limasol, Nicosia, Bucharest, Patra and Thessaloniki are participating in this project. They are members of three photography collectives: BULBphotos, CPS-Pafos Branch and Fotodos. The project is funded by the Cultural Services of the Ministry of Education and Culture of Cyprus.
For the photographers, the core of ‘HOME’ is discussion about what photography does and how they can produce images based on their memories, feelings, emotions and discovering themselves through photography. Even though ‘home’ is a simple word it can cover something very complex. Answering ‘what does home mean to you?’ provided numerous explanations depending on different thoughts and feelings that came up. For some it is a place or a location where something grows or originates. For others it is a social unit formed by a family living together or a congenial environment where they feel safe and loved or even the house that they live in. For others it is a more abstract notion stemming from their psyche (psychosynthesis) and emotions. Thus, ‘home’ is never a fixed condition. It is more a product of interactions and relations, shaped by changing cultural frameworks and experiences. Through this workshop, the photographers had the opportunity to share their own work and get feedback from the two educators.
After the introductory workshop, the photographers spent 3 days photographing in Drousia and the wider location in an effort to produce photographs on the idea of ‘home’ aiming to communicate their own understanding and perception of ‘home’ in an unknown environment. The educators/supervisors provided guidance and tried to push the photographers to their limits so they could interrogate their ideas of what ‘home’ really means to them. Private sessions with the two experts took place in an effort to help each photographer decide his/her approach of the idea. Based on this guidance, the photographers continued producing photos until the last day. In a community assembly on the last night of the residence, all participants projected their work and again got feedback from the educators.
Now, the project continues with the photographers producing photos at their places of origin based on the same Drousia idea for the next three months. The photographs they will produce from both locations will be included in a catalog and an exhibition in Pafos in December 2017 while efforts are made to transfer the exhibition in Nicosia and abroad. Curating the event will be Eskenazi and Nasios, along with Cheryl Newman (UK).
‘HOME’ is a most interesting project and seeing how the photographers present their idea of ‘home’, from both their native and foreign territories will be sure to fuel analysis and inspiration. We look forward to seeing the final results! Stay tuned for details as the project nears completion!
The participating photographers are: Rena Achilleos (Cyprus), Simos Charalampous (Cyprus), Bogdan Comisel (Romania), Christina-Mina Dalea (Romania), Andreas Drousiotis (Cyprus), Dragos Dumitrescu (Romania), Corneliu Radu Sarion (Romania), Thanos Savvidis (Cyprus), Stavros Stamatiou (Greece), Ioannis Stamatogiannis (Greece), Phiniki Stouppa (Cyprus) and Varnavas Varnava (Cyprus).