(Gr & En
Interview: George Alexandrakis
Despite her limited experience in photography, this young artist’s work is exceptionally impressive, showcasing powerful themes. While nudity is often employed to captivate viewers, she goes beyond surface allure, focusing on conveying meaningful messages through her art. Embracing challenges as opportunities, she transforms obstacles into creative expressions. Recognizing life’s hardships, each of her efforts demands our unwavering attention.
Is it necessary for a photographic collection to be accompanied by a description that gives clues to your viewers about the messages you want to convey through your photos, or do you think that the outcome should speak for itself?
I don’t want to give a manual to each picture but rather prefer people to create their own story and explanation of the image. There is always a certain topic which I follow throughout the development of every project. The final work is showing just fragment of it, leaving pace for curiosity and imagination of the viewer. I want to draw on a subject or address a question but let everyone to choose his or her own perspective. My work is very personal and general at the same time. I believe that every time when you look at the picture you see yourself on the first place. I want to keep it this way.
You are almost 23 years old, and yet your resume includes several publications in international journals. How do you feel about your career taking this path, and despite your young age, how did you manage to achieve so many publications?
I think it is mostly about this virtual era. To showcase your work and get reaction is easier than ever before. It can be seen almost everywhere around the world within seconds, of course if it doesn’t get lost and unnoticed in the huge amount of other content which is constantly circulating on the internet. I have to admit that I’m thankful to get most of the publications and even jobs because of social media where I began to present my work. It is a great tool for young people like us to create their own management and production but of course it cannot be taken too seriously. Sharing ideas and publishing of the results is a crucial part of my creative process.
What has not been seen practically does not exist. Only when the result is out I consider the work to be finished so I can move to another one. I create the project as my interaction with the topic and the audience. Art should be connected to reality even if it is not directly portraying it. My work may be a fiction but it is based on truth.
While in the process of creating a photographic collection, do you have the ability to foresee the final outcome, or is your main focus on accurately recreating what you have already imagined and letting it flow naturally?
Everything we do starts with the idea but in my case, this idea is never born finished. It develops in the process as the project and our way of thinking is changing spontaneously. I prefer to leave some space for creativity and accident instead of strictly following complete concept.
Usually I know what I want to achieve but I’m flexible in the way how to do it. The result is never fully consistent with original vision but that is also creating the excitement which I love about this work. You never really know what you will get.
Naked bodies with allegorical references, linked together in harmony, can be sometimes seen in your photos. Do you think that the human naked body -still a taboo for several cultures- can convey a deeper meaning beyond the obvious?
I’m using nudity in its natural, not sexual context. In my series it represents humanity. I use it as the way to unify the people by erasing any classification created by clothing. Clothes help us to distinguish where and when we live, what our taste and social status is. We create a certain character, visible to the outer world, but without all this we are just human. I believe that most of us are scared of ourselves, we are scared of this fragility and vulnerability of our truth self.
Does nudity capture our era? Is it like a metaphorical striptease in front of the most powerful people that leads to our weakening? If so, is there a different dynamic when many naked bodies unite against a society?
I’ m interested in situation when people lose their control and don’t behave like individuals anymore. These patterns of behaviour are simplified into body gestures creating the composition. Nudity may attract the attention even if it is not its main purpose. To deliver a topic I usually try to create powerful aesthetic which should not replace but strengthen the concept.
In 2012 you underwent eye surgery which was quite influential in your life. Was this one of the reasons you turned to an art which is based on vision?
Definitely! I had eye surgery after many years of suffering strong myopia (short-sightedness). I started with photography a few months afterwards. I remember the first day after surgery when I was allowed to go outside. Only then I discovered what it means to really see the world with an infinite colour range and a great amount of details. I keep this astonishment till this day. I’ m constantly searching for inspiration and immediately translating it to my own visuals.
Which is your biggest fear, if any, as an artist?
I don’t consider myself to be an artist. I’m just a person driven by fascination to a total obsession for capturing my vision. I’m afraid I would not be able to do that again. I’m afraid I would not progress further and I’m afraid that I won’t develop my skills fast enough. I’m constantly doubting our work, its motivation and purpose. I’m scared that I might lose my drive but also that it can destroy me. I’m afraid of stopping even for a minute. It is almost not possible anymore. But I’m not afraid of failing as long as I can learn from it and move on. Even if it scares me, I wish for every challenge and experience which may bring me further. I want to go higher and deeper at the same time. I want to create strong but sincere work, to be fully present in it. I wish to stay critical but never lose my passion.
Is there anything that you would never shoot or anything that you’d never want to include in a photo project of yours?
Next to university studies I’m also earning my living with photography, so I’m quite used to the fact that I cannot 100% agree with everything I do. There are a few things I would not accept now but that can change over the years and during my personal development. We will see.
How would you describe Slovakia regarding the education of people on art issues? Is it a country that gives opportunities to artists or are they forced to emigrate in order to feel more free and have better opportunities?
I have to admit that most of the young creative people are leaving the country for a reason. There is not enough support for art and cultural projects but also lack of open-minded attitude in regular society. People from young generations know that they are the ones able to change this situation but that might be a long struggle. In my opinion, Slovakia has a problem with accepting its real cultural identity. Instead of appreciating and developing what we already have, there is an unsuccessful effort to look like something what we will never be. My work and vision is strongly influenced by my origin and I believe that even the people who travel and leave the country often for better conditions or inspiration always come back with new energy and ideas. Like every relationship, this one is also about taking and giving. If we destroy our roots, we cannot grow.