Greece: Southern Province

These pictures are the outcome of a three-year photographic wandering of Babis Kougemitros– in his place of origin: the province of Arcadia. In the context of this wandering, the photographer direct his gaze and lens to things simultaneously familiar and unfamiliar, focusing on the intermediate zones between the past and the present, the old and the new –zones still coexisting in the countryside.

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This is a photographic endeavour of remapping not only the familiar landscapes of childhood memories –landscapes now in a state of radical transition– but also of the people dwelling in them and cultivating the earth. In Peloponnese, this southern part of Greece (which is also the southern border of Europe), the interesting thing lies in the co-existence –at times harmonic, at times full of tensions– of native people, economic migrants and internal immigrants – that is, young people who left the big cities to experiment with different ways of life.

The place and the cultivation of the land is what binds these people on one level, and yet builds new borders and boundaries between them, on another: borders and boundaries symbolic and imaginary, hence imperceptible. Their co-existence marks the emergence of a place different and uncharted; a bizarre landscape neither beautiful nor ugly, in a process of deep transformation and reshaping –a liminal landscape of Greece.

Using the special characteristics of this southern part of Europe as his background, Babis Kougemitros captures a moment of the complex everyday life of these people and landscapes, informing the viewer about their specificities and the identity of all the small and insignificant things which construct their reality, while remaining unseen. Babis Kougemitros designates his places of origin in the south border of Europe without pursuing a “typical” representation of the latter –only attempts of interpretation, often in a fragmentary and contradictory fashion.

About the author:

Babis Kougemitros was born in Athens, Greece in 1975. Ηe studied Political Science & International Relations in Panteion University and Photography in the Technological Educational Institute of Athens. He participated in Plato Rivelli’s photo course and his photos have been exhibited at Photocircle Group Exhibitions. His personal exhibition “Edgelands” (2012) and group exhibition “City Edges” (2013) have been presented in Athens Photo Festival. Part of his portfolio has been occasionally presented in Athens Benaki Museum.

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