Paky Vlassopoulou
The very idea of escape forms the exterior to which one can flee, 2022

Clay, wood, reeds, eucalyptus
Variable dimensions

Leros has a long history of incarceration rooted in its exemplary landscape defined by water and unique architectural heritage. In the area of Lepida, military barracks built during the Italian occupation (1912-1943), have been reused ever since as indoctrination institutions in post-Greek Civil War era (1948-1964). Last year, right above the existing infrastructures, on top of the hill, a new controlled refugee camp, with barbed wire fencing, surveillance cameras, x-ray scanners and magnetic doors and gates, was built. In the middle of the space, two sculptures refer to the marshy ground and the natural flora that surrounds the facilities at Lepida. Although nature is often associated with a sense of freedom, in the case of the inmates the feeling can be very different. The plants act as an additional barrier to a possible escape and exacerbate the feeling of fear. [The very idea of escape forms the exterior to which one can flee] serves as a cognitive and sensorial experience on placement and displacement.

Excerpt taken from the press release of Paky Vlassopoulou’s solo exhibition at One Minute Space, Athens, 2023, curated by Florent Frizet.