Going where we come from, Maëlle Gross
An art walk dealing with identity, borders, and myths, will open on Friday May 19, 2017 in Kypseli. This post-bourgeois area has changed the past decades to become one of the most multi-cultural neighbourhoods in Athens. The project initiated by the Swiss artist Maëlle Gross will run until June 10, 2017.
Maëlle Gross reflects on the permeability of spaces and borders. For her new project, entitled “Going where we come from”, she presents an audiovisual art walk that invites the viewer to stroll alone along the bustling streets of Kypseli. The spectator is guided by oral indications gathered in an audio guide.
Maëlle Gross has Greek origins by her father and Swiss roots by her mother. Her family home didn’t stand so far from Kypseli, on Filira street. Nowadays, Kypseli is an urban area with a high rate of the population being refugees and migrants. Mirroring current events as well as her own family story, Gross evokes memory, borders and integration, through the lives of Kypseli’s inhabitants. Since January 2017, she has been collecting stories, conducting research in situ and immersing herself in the everyday life of the neighbourhood through daily walks and meetings with inhabitants and local communities based and active in the area.
Along the tour, the audience is invited to view works by Cypriot, French, Greek and Swiss artists within public and private spaces broadly linked to identity, myth, and immigration. In his photographic work Nikolas Ventourakis (Greece) challenges the perception of the viewer for a once beautified past in the entrance hall of a private building. Through a series of poems translated in Arabic, English, French, and Greek, Gilles Furtwängler (Switzerland) questions the relationship of the viewers with the street and with language. Drawing inspiration from the Greek mythology and the city’s guardian, Athena, Gabrielle Le Bayon (France) searches for signs of resistance rooted in the everyday expressions of women in the streets. In his video work, presented in a billiard hall, Luc Andrié (Switzerland) examines our relationship with notions of waiting and gazing at others. The photographs of Stelios Kallinikou (Cyprus) placed in the intimate setting of a private home addresses the topography of a self that searches for a place to be, a past as well as a present. Finally, Myriam Ziehli (Switzerland) displays a series of silkscreens where waves of the Geneva’s lake echo the city’s shore. The music that accompanies the narration has been composed and performed by Theodore Pistiolas.
The project is curated by Myrto Katsimicha (Greece) and Olivia Fahmy (Switzerland/Egypt), invited by Mäelle Gross, and coordinated by Gross and Alice Francillon.
Participating artists: Luc Andrié, Gilles Furtwängler, Stelios Kallinikou, Gabrielle Le Bayon, Nikolas Ventourakis, Myriam Ziehli.
Opening on Thursday, May 18, 2017 from 8:30 pm.
The exhibition is running from May 19th to June 10th, from Thursday to Saturday: 4 pm to 8:30 pm (last departure at 7:45 pm).
Individual departure every fifteen minutes from the office of To Mirmigi, 60 Eptanisou Street, Kypseli, Athens. Audio guides available in Arabic, English, French and Greek.