The Thickness of Time by locus athens / Athens

The Thickness of Time / curated by locus athens

artists: Yto Barrada, Aikaterini Gegisian, Dor Guez, Jumana Manna, Naeem Mohaiemen, Didem Pekün
architectural intervention: Diplomates

20th of January – 4th of March

Akadimias 23, Athens
opening hours: wed 16.00 – 20.00, thurs & fri 20.00 – 24.00 & sat 12.00 – 16.00

Jumana Manna; A Sketch of Manners (Alfred Roch’s Last Masquerade)
2013, HD Video, 12 min. (co-scripted with Norman M. Klein)
Courtesy Jumana Manna and CRG Gallery

Yto Barrada; Hand-Me-Downs
2011, film, video, 16mm and 8mm transferred to digital, colour, sound, 15 min.
Courtesy Pace Gallery, London; Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Hamburg, Beirut; and Galerie Polaris, 

Dor Guez; The Sick Man of Europe: The Painter
2015, video, color, sound, 20 min.
Courtesy the artist, Dvir Gallery, Brussels and Tel Aviv, and Carlier Gebauer Gallery, Berlin

Naeem Mohaieman; Afsan’s Long Day (The Young Man Was, Part II)
2014, film, 40 min.
Courtesy of Experimenter (India) and LUX (UK)

The Sickness of Time, A speakeasy bar designed by Diplomates

Aikaterini Gegisian; My Pink City
2014, essay film, HD Video, col & b/w, 48 min.
Courtesy the artist & Kalfayan Galleries, Athens-Thessaloniki

Didem Pekün; A Soliloquy: 7 thoughts on Inhabiting Purgatorium, talk at the opening night*

Photographs by Dimitris Parthimos

* The Production of Didem Pekün’s work was supported by Salt, Istanbul

The Thickness of Time is a group show exploring how moving images (video & film) are used to engage with histories: cultural, social and political. It will look into how artists using a range of filmic strategies turn to the past as reference points for contemporary situations. Political and personal stories intertwine allowing for complex often paradoxical narratives to emerge, forging bridges between the past and the undetermined now. Historical facts and poetic metaphors, in dialogue with each other, create timely critiques whilst hinting at hidden narratives and the possibility of misguided propositions. The exhibition bears witness to this perpetual process of working and reworking history; with stories often still in the making.

The Thickness of Time furthermore investigates how moving images are used as potent tools for shifting through the sediments of the past. The medium’s representational freedom (the enmeshment of the visual, language, sound and a broad spectrum of editing techniques) allows for reconfiguring linear historical perspectives whilst raising questions concerning the narrow oppressiveness of official chronicles. The works selected use a variety of authorial often personal voices to undermine stratified power relations. They opt for different strategies such as fictional representation, archives mobilized as dynamic tools as well as personal anecdotes and even gossip to untangle a web of interconnected sources, stories and lives.

The exhibition will unfold in the Former Correspondents Center in central Athens. Designed in the 1920’s by the architect Vasileios Tsagris as a residency of Greeks of the diaspora, later as the center of diplomatic services of the Third Reich and now an emptied out structural shell awaiting re-use, the building has survived large-scale epochal shifts throughout the last century. The building itself will function as a key element of the exhibition – its architecture will be used as a suggestive sub-current hinting at the moving image’s use of theatricality, drama and fiction as narrative tools. The Thickness of Time hopes to inhabit this space, inviting people, to renounce the accelerated overflow of visual spam, to come in, pause, see and discuss the interconnectivity of disparate voices whilst bearing witness to a multitude of histories unraveling in this moment’s unbearable thickness of time.