Breathe | Water Section

Site Specific Installations

Curator: Efi Strousa

Organised by: Zoumboulakis Galleries

Venue: K. Sarantopoulos Flower Mill

Kaminia – Athens, Greece

This is Danae Stratou’s first solo exhibition in Athens, Greece. The project was a site-specific double installation comprising the works Breathe and Water Section installed at an old warehouse in Athens, near the docks. This is a very interesting, industrial area, which is a natural junction between the city and the sea. Both the installations develop a dialectic relationship with the space. The one space prepares you to enter into the next one, though they are very opposite in nature. The space of Breathe is a warm, dark, esoteric environment. This space was deliberately left untouched, old, as it was, in total antithesis of the space of Water Section, which was totally transformed into a white, bright and austere space.

In Water Section, flowing water was arrested and made to look static, almost like glass, reflecting the surrounding space, and in Breathe inanimate earth was energized and given movement. The sound was created especially for these two environments. In Water Section, the sensation of motion, currant and flow is provided by the liquid, metallic sounds that compel the viewer to walk along the line of water and enter the rhythm of motion and direction of it’s straight line-a line of water which dissects the space along its length. On the one hand the space is cut in two but on the other hand the water channel serves as a conceptual link connecting the outside to the inside space, a continuous thread from sea to city, water to land.

For Breathe the space was left untouched, old and dilapidated as it was. Upon entering the installation’s space, the viewer is enveloped by the scent of earth as he physically walks upon the rich layer of reddish earth that covers the entire space. At the center of the space, a round pool of light attracts the viewer to approach. The gentle esoteric sounds of breathing and the subtle rhythmic movement of the earth itself furthers the magnetic pull on the viewer’s senses creating an active involvement, as all of the senses are evoked. At the installation’s centre, inanimate earth was energized and given movement. The breathing motion “expands” and energizes the whole space. The sounds are echoes of the primal act of breathing. This work seeks to motivate the synergy between the intellectual and the emotive realms thus evoking the physical recollection of the ‘memory-experience’ of a primeval relationship to the world.