Project Description

Flashes of European Photography: Transeurope Project
Spotlight on Stratos Maragos

Nitra Gallery in Athens participates in Athens Culture Net Culture Night 2019 and opens its doors to the public by show-casing Flashes of European Photography: Transeurope Project for Gallery Night.

The projection Flashes of European Photography: Transeurope Project aims at offering a glimpse at a project which started two years ago and will reach its final destination with the exhibition Any More Odes? to be held in Athens in November (opening night on 11/11/2019 at the Athens Municipality Arts Center).

The European program Transeurope Photo project is a platform operating on various levels (portfolio reviews, photography workshops and exhibitions) creating a “space” for networking, mobility and exchange of ideas and approaches to photography in the current scene, addressed to emerging and mid-career photographers.

The works projected were showcased at the Finnish Museum of Photography in Helsinki this summer, in the exhibition entitled Belonging to the Story curated by Clément Beraud, Reetta Haarajoki and Tiina Rauhala with the participation of eight artists Pablo Lerma, Stratos Maragos, Τito Mouraz, Alessia Rollo, Maija Annikki Savolainen, Alejandra Carles-Tolra and Willner & Olsson. Alongside the projection we are showcasing the works of the Greek participation, the series Minus Two (-2) by Stratos Maragos.

Quoting the curators, the exhibition “hovers between reality and fiction and uses the techniques of contemporary photographic art to examine the way in which we cling to one another and the world, dream, create utopias, and imagine the future. [..] At the same time, it aims to give the viewers the space to delve into their own imagination and thus continue the story”.

On view through 10 October 2019
The presentation of the series Minus Two (-2) by Stratos Maragos will be on view until 2 November 2019

Stratos Maragos
Minus Two (-2)

-2, two levels underground in the hospital in which Maragos works as a chemist, is it where precious medical records of patients are stored, among abandoned instruments, useless materials, and all the items and apparatuses the departments relinquish. There are several stories about -2: thieves that have been hidden or hide their loot there, homeless and immigrants who find shelter, rodents and insects that inhabit the place. -2 has been flooded several times and many records have been destroyed. Personnel visit reluctantly, almost with fear and never alone.

Through this project, Maragos is not interested in presenting what -2 really looks like. Instead, he wishes to evoke the atmosphere of a place infused with mystery and secrecy. Maragos photographs not only the archives that have been deposited there but also things that have been found or are related to this place. It seems that -2 serves more as a passageway before the total destruction of these materials rather than as a place where they are temporarily stored and hidden in a state of stasis.

Waiting for their inevitable fate of becoming pulp, these archives are open to future interpretation. The nostalgic impulse toward the abandoned medical records arouses not only the slight possibility that these documents could belong to a beloved person but our compulsive desire to rescue them and, through them, our own existence—by preventing forgetfulness and stopping the disappearance of things. Even though for those who have passed away, their medical records are what remain.

Stratos Maragos
Stratos Maragos is a photographer and a biochemist. He lives and works in Athens.
He studied photography at Stereosis in Thessaloniki. Since 2016 he has been taking photography courses at the Athens School of Fine Arts. He has attended courses and workshops amongst which with Alec Soth, Anders Petersen, JH Engstorm, Depression Era, Dust Breeding Lab and Transeurope.
His project Lucid Dream was presented in Thessaloniki Photobiennale Logos (2014). In 2019, his project Minus Two (-2) was exhibited in The Finish Museum of Photography in Helsinki as part of Belonging to the Story Exhibition and in Photometria Festival, Greece and were later presented as part of his solo show at Nitra Gallery in Athens.