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Greek Tradition

© George Tatakis

Greece is home to an abundance of local events, that are bound to traditions and customs. Across the four corners of the country a great variety of events take place, related either to different times in history or geographic origins. These events and the tradition around them are so far the focus of George Tatakis’ work.

In this work, the ‘other side’ of Greece is revealed to us. It is the Greece of traditional culture, of everyday life and celebration, the creations of people of different gender, age and local identity. Even if the customs and rituals they depict, in the yearly cycle and in the life cycle, sometimes seem strange and exotic, unusual, and even provocative, they are all vividly alive and highlight the wealth and diversity of traditional Greek culture as experienced by its own actors.

The photographer captures material culture, customs, values and practices, and local traditions of rural, island and urban areas with empathy and a penetrating gaze. The images of prompt us to encounter and to reflect upon the customary life of the groups that make up the colourful embroidery of the country’s traditions.

The journey’s outcome shows that no matter how the different customs and traditions may seem at the beginning, they share many similarities, even when a Dionysian custom is compared to a Christian one. This is because people have always been people, with similar sensitivities and needs. This work attempts to depict the ability of people to come close through their differences, thus presenting a more complex but interesting approach which may help avoid the danger of monotony in our modern lives.

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