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Kamilo Nollas – Tobacco Factories: Enigmas, Order and Emptiness
04/04/2009 @ 11:00 - 02/05/2009 @ 17:00
4 April – 2 May 2009
Kamilo Nollas’s exclusive photographic display “Kapnomagaza” is featured in DEPO. (In northern Greece, tobacco factories are referred to as “kapnomagaza”)
The exhibition, a production of the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography and diadrasi.org, presents 40 colored photographs from tobacco factories in the Greek towns of Agrinio, Volos, Kavala, Drama and Xanthi, produced between September 2003 and January 2007.
Through his photographs, Kamilo Nollas illustrates the industrial heritage left by the tobacco industry in Greece. Today, most of these factories remain abandoned, isolated from any urban conscience, neglected by citizens and overlooked by public institutions. As such, they have become non-existent. If one tried to encompass what they stand for, he would have to say that they relate to a so-called “industrial unconscious”. In fact, alongside their emotional yet rough, materialistic nature they also possess a sort of psychic abundance, a concealed “spiritual space” that expresses a series of distressed manifestations of modernization: namely, all the rejections, the condensations and the transpositions that define today’s modern cities and towns.
Nollas’s photographs discretely reveal how these spaces maintain a sort of shattered life, but above all, they record a lack of industrial consciousness that Greek towns were never able to reverse. He portrays these spaces through images that generate feelings of curiosity, surprise, obscurity, melancholy, even pity and forgetfulness, while at the same time, inviting the spectator to contemplate. His photographs imprint spatial relationships as indications, trails and remnants of time itself.
By taking photographs indoors and using natural light and shadows, Nollas captures in film the very “air breathed” by these empty, yet imposing and full of history spaces.
The photographs featured in the exhibition, together with an assortment of photographic material from tobacco warehouses are documented in a printed collection titled “Kapnomagaza” (KASTANIOTIS Editions, May 2007). The publication includes text by Yiorgos Tzirtzilakis, Maria Rentetzi and Thanasis Moutsopoulos. The album was candidate for the “Best Photography Book of the Year Award” by PhotoEspana ’08 and it was presented at the National Library of Madrid among the best 100 albums of the world.
Panel Discussion Date: 4 April 2009
Kamilo Nollas – Photographer / “Tobacco Factories: A photographer’s experience”.
Ioannis Vyzikas – Director of the Tobacco Museum of Kavala / “I Kapnergatiki agones stin Kavala apo to telos tou 19ou eona mehri to 1924” – Tobacco workers’ movements in Kavala from the late 19th century until 1924.
Tutku Vardağlı – PhD candidate at Bosphorus University Ataturk Institute / “19. Yüzyıl sonunda Osmanlı İmparatorluğu’nda kadın tütün işçileri” – Female tobacco workers in late 19th century Ottoman Empire.
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Nollas’ın objektifinde sabitlenen boşluk
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