The second edition of PETROSPHERE, a part of a series of projects between 5 artists based in Glasgow and 5 artists based in Athens is opening tomorrow at a basement space within Glasgow's Skypark.
In a variety of visual languages - sculpture, drawing, photography, printmaking performance and video- the artists who are also curating themselves this exhibition will be part of the Included programme of Glasgow International. While they sent us some exclusive images of their new works,we asked Ruth Barker, Antonakis Christodoulou, Helen de Main, Vassilis H, Niall Macdonald, James McLardy, Margarita Myrogianni, Aliki Panagiotopoulou, Ciara Phillips and Kostas Sahpazis a few questions about this new project in the UK.
MM.: How did the second edition of Petrosphere come up as a project?
PETROSPHERE was always conceived as a project in two halves: first, we would develop the project for ReMap of Athens and then we would come back together to develop new work for Glasgow international. We see strong links between the two festivals, but also between the two cities. Athens and Glasgow are clearly very different in many ways but we find that they share a similar energy - and perhaps the work we are making touches on that.
MM.: Do you think that the situation in Athens the past year has played a role in it?
The work always has a relation to the context in which each artist is working but the exhibition is not aiming towards offering a direct political comment on the situation. Of course the practical situations of the two cities have an enormous impact on the nature of the two exhibitions. Neither exhibition has happened in a conventional gallery space for example, and this has been something that we have chosen to work with to our advantage. We have also been very lucky to receive financial support from Creative Scotland for both stages of the project.
As individual artists, everyone in the exhibition takes their inspiration from quite different sources and these individual concerns become linked in a dialogue between the works as we curate the exhibition. If we are to look for a political aspect to this exhibition, it would lie on the similarities that the cities share. Glasgow has gone through an economic depression which it has now recovered from, which means that the collective memory of the city contains the existential, social and political tools that were necessary to cope in a time of crisis and which helped develop such a strong artistic community and language. Athens is in the process of developing these now, as it falls deeper into depression.