‘In Waiting’, is an examination of Athens and its role as a physical stage for the economic crisis. Primarily, I am exploring the interiors of government buildings, institutions and schools so as to question how these spaces reflect modern Greek culture and character. The locations I chose are familiar microcosms that have recently become the public stage for a forced re-negotiation of Greek identity.

Through this work I am also personally trying to rationalize how the deceptively tedious components of urban life factor into the economic crisis. I am specifically attracted to the kitsch aesthetic and surreal atmosphere I encounter in these spaces. These interiors also reveal an almost antiquated and bare aesthetic quality; they evoke in their décor a feeling of dependency on and idolization of the past.

The economic crisis has created a shock that ripples through social and physical structures and affects unpredictably the way we as Greeks perceive our surroundings. During the continuing thriller of monetary installments, the crisis is a reminder of the images of the city we really grew up with. Spaces, which once seemed banal or unimportant, now reveal nuances of Greek reality and have social and political implications. Like the Greek people, these places exist in anticipation of their future.

— Eirini Vourloumis

Editor’s note: Eirini Vourloumis is a member of the
Depression Era Project, a collective of 30+ artists, photographers, writers, curators, designers and researchers who are working on the topic of crisis in contemporary Greece. You can discover more on the project’s website, which features Vourloumis’ work as well as projects from 24 other photographers.

Exhibition of all 50 LensCulture Emerging Talents: Barcelona, October 13-31

Eirini Vourloumis’ work, along with photographs from ALL the LensCulture Emerging Talents will be shown in an exhibition at the Galeria Valid Foto in Barcelona. Please join us for the opening party on October 13, 2014—we hope to see you there! See a preview of ALL the winners here in LensCulture.

ALL winners have already been featured at photo festival screenings in Dublin, Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Tokyo and Amsterdam so far this year. Next screening in Korea at the
Seoul Lunar Photo Fest.