Vassilis Konstantinou returns to a familiar place to photograph the familiar and unfamiliar.
These pictures are the outcome of a three-year photographic wandering of Vassilis Konstantinou – in his place of origin: the province of Achaia. In the context of this wandering, the photographer directed 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.
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.
Using the special characteristics of this southern part of Europe as his background, Vassilis Konstantinou 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.
You can see more of Vassilis’s work here.
All photos: © Vassilis Konstantinou
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