NEW YORK.- Periplus, the Greek word for circumnavigation, refers to sailing across the coastline or round an island or a continent; it also refers to a book which contains geographic information and coast descriptions. The photographic periplus that is presented by the Cultural Olympiad and Magnum Photos under the title Periplus, Twelve Magnum Photographers in Contemporary Greece, is not only the interpretation of the word but becomes the story itself. Discover the images of contemporary Greece through an original trek. After Thessaloniki, the exhibit is coming to the Onassis Cultural Center in New York (Olympic Tower, 615 Fifth Ave, NY) from May 4 to June 6
What is the Periplus? Is it a simple depiction of the current Greek realities, a corroboration of events, peoples, objects or landscapes?
According to curator Sylviane de Decker-Heftler “(…) Periplus is for the Magnum photographers the opportunity to confront the Greek territory through twelve itineraries that each constitutes a singular experience (note: for both themselves and the beholder). The unexpected, the chance, the coincidence, the encounters hold their special position in such a project. Like an ancient resonance, the texts by Greek lyric poets, philosophers and dramatists accompany the authors to this initiatory labyrinth.”
This way through, a photographic exploration where common “topos” is the face of Greece today develops differently on technical, as well as on artistic level, according to who’s behind the camera each time. Josef Koudelka, Lise Sarfati, Patrick Zachmann, Jim Goldberg, Bruce Gilden, Νikos Economopoulos, Constantine Manos, Richard Kalvar, Miguel Rio Branco, Alex Webb, Carl de Keyzer, Mark Power.
Names that can guarantee a lot more than the obvious. Acclaimed photographers with the personal look needed in order to tell what is really beautiful and interesting, as far as a visual or a documentational product is concerned. Artists who prove once more, the kind of inspired travellers they can be…
Obviously, such an exhibition, under the given title should travel itself. So, the Periplus project includes five cities (Thessaloniki, New York, London, Berlin, Beijing) that each hosts a different “cut” of the “full” version that is to be presented in Athens during the Olympic Games’ period and which includes 150 works by the twelve Magnum photographers.