I promised more wall art from my not too long ago trip. It’s funny, only about a month has passed since I returned home and it seems as if the three weeks away from home was in another lifetime! It was, indeed, another world. And it’s so long ago.
Well, even longer ago is the year when I lived in Ioannina, in northwestern Greece. That was during my grad school days. I’ve been able to return several times and with each visit change abounds in the city by the lake. In that real past, wall art was a thing of the future. Even scrawling or tagging graffiti was unknown to the stone walls of the city. Now it’s almost everywhere to be seen.
Ioannina was a city on the edges of the Ottoman Empire for four hundred years. When I left on my first trip to Greece while an undergraduate, my grandfather (who was from there) actually asked me why I would want to go the “Turkey.” Two mosques remain overlooking in the city in the Byzantine walled area overlooking the lake.
A third houses shops in another district of the city. I did not get to it this year.
One muralist captured the city’s multi-cultural and architectural history on a wall somewhere in the market.
Another mural that caught my eye was part of a national project to illustrate the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 motto “Our Heritage: where the past meets the future,” creating new memories and redefining the way of experiencing our cultural heritage.
Six augmented reality murals by artist Nikolaos A. Tsounakas (https://www.instagram.com/nikolaosatsounakas/?hl=en) were unveiled on the streets of Athens, Thessaloniki, and Ioannina, opening the dialogue between cultural heritage and urban life. In addition to combining traditional and modern techniques, the project also encouraged the public to use their smartphones and tablets to give life to the artworks. I did not!
Here’s another fusion of ancient images in the modern world that caught my eye.
Music was found all over the city.
Long ago I wrote somewhere in this blog of my love affair with the pomegranate, a fruit rich in symbolism. Here captured on a plaque, not quite wall art. The pomegranates were also abundantly in season …
Some of the graffiti I saw spoke volumes about today’s world. The plight of women in Iran had just boiled over shortly before I left home.
A small stenciled image on another wall reflected brought me home to the US and an act in the US which seems to have changed much of the world. The late George Floyd was brought to us by the Greek Communist party.