Vassilis Vasileiou's statement
I live in the southern suburbs of Athens, Greece. Inhabited continuously since the ancient times, this is a place characterized by material abundance and laid-back, luxurious lifestyle. At the same time, high fences, barbed wires and surveillance cameras turn the houses into strongholds or border barricades and the streets into some kind of urban “no-man’s land”. This setting poses questions about the role of my own domestic comfort zone and whether protection and restriction are actually the two sides of the exact same coin. By documenting the paradoxical elements that surround my everyday life, I try to make sense of myself and address my own existential questions, however it still remains vague and unanswered to me whether the outside world is paradoxical or I am the paradox within it. Seen together, these elements form heterotopias that are extracted from their surroundings, offer a new viewpoint and make a novel comment upon the existing references. Having the documentary genre as a starting point, the reality that I present is, therefore, a distilled one. The Voice of the Cicada is a visual testimony of my endeavor to interpret, transform and re-create the environment and the people that surround me, leading to an eventual understanding and definition my own self and my place into the world. My heroes, as alternate versions of myself, dwell in affluence, within their dazzling, colorful bubbles. Both watching and observing but also being watched, they look like fireflies in a sealed jar filled with sugar water.