Fear of the void / Horror Vacui | ALIKI TSIRLIAGKOU

“Nature abhors a vacuum”
Aristotle

In the time of crisis, when more and more shops cease to function, we transformed our distaste for empty spaces into creation and decided to conquer them creatively. According to Aristotle, nature abhors a vacuum and finds a way to fill them. The project « Horror Vacui» is a confirmation that any void finds a way to be occupied. With the help of the Commercial Association of Thessaloniki and the Institute of Trade Development the creators of the city intervene in five shops and transform their windows into dynamic visual facilities.

Showcase 1: Disorder and Black Hole
By Artist Fotini Kalle (Valaoritou 7 and Tandalidou, Vardaris)

Three different times are projected in this work designating the actual time (clockwork way of logging time), the imaginary time (emotional way of logging time) and empty time (time standing still). Their point of equilibrium is the same event that is repeated through the video projection and which seems to be this reason for this form of temporal disorder.

Showcase 2: Bridging the gap
By artist Elena Petriki (Venizelou – Dionysiou Solomou 19)

This gap affects the human psyche with the intense, fast and poor quality of daily life, the lack of breaks and relaxation. Lasting gaps hampering the awareness of our life and creativity, which –complying with the wisdom of nature- we have to fill. As we bridge our personal and collective gaps, it becomes necessary to find ways to turn them into life and creation, covering them with prudence, openness and courage.

Showcase 3: Random e-motion, 2013
By artists Stellios Dexis, Mirto Vounatsou, Synthia Gerothanasiou, Stephanos Aspridis (Grigoriou Palama 4)

Light and matter, levels and space, a video installation that explores the personal anguish and fear through repeated symbolic actions-images, which are found in the imaginary dream-space of the collective unconscious.

Showcase 4: Trapped in colours
By artists Eleni Kasimati, Loida Nedeltsou, Nora Pavlidi (Vilara 2)

A showcase is a trap. Both for the shopkeeper –should his expenses overcome his revenues- and for consumers the who fall victim to pointless purchases charging their credit cards. Traps are used by animals to ensure their food… Inspired by a spider web that is weaved quickly and fills space, the installation fills the space like a trap of colours… and money! The colors symbolize the colorful labels and the colourful notes that grab our attention. Everything is a color trap which keeps us inside, driven by the fear of VACUUM.

Showcase 5: Psycho-Connection
By artist Giannis Charalambidis (Vilara 2)

The void is conceptually and essentially connected to time. The void itself does not provide any impetus for creativity, but human intervention in spatial void can metaphorically become the means that will lead to communication between the artist and the city. The structural elements of human communication, sound, words, images, turn into tools, turn into a game, phrases, images, music. They become the means that helps people interact with the space, discovering the tiniest aspects of a multifaceted relationship.

The event is part of the project Made In Thessaloniki 2 (organized by Thessaloniki Otherwise & Parallax). The artistic interventions in the windows will run until May 15.

The text was first published in Parallaxi magazine, in Greek.