The Image: Petros Koublis, "Kyma"

© Petros Koublis, Kyma, February 2013

Kyma, from the series "In Landscapes"
February 2013

A landscape is an illimitable state. It's not restricted within the visible area in front of our eyes, but it extends in an undefined distance, reaching for the limits of our interpretation over ourselves and the world around us. It is because every landscape is eventually defined as the vast open field where our thoughts and feelings are meeting with the outside world. It's both an imaginary field and an actual reality, a perpetual state and a momentary revelation.

In November of 2012, I started exploring the area just outside the outskirts of the Greek capital, trying to reveal the gradual transformation of this, once, intimate nature into a distant, otherworldly state. The fact that these distant landscapes can be actually found so near to the city of Athens is something that reveals the parabolic character that every Landscape seems to bare inside but it also creates a definite contrast that reveals the dramatic condition of our current civilization.

I started working on a series of images that were aiming to express the undefined, mystical presence that wanders around these areas, a lost connection between us and a beauty that regardless of its obvious magnificence it always remains far, strange and unfamiliar, hidden behind an unreasonable mystery. Moreover, it's not only nature, eventually it is beauty itself that has lost its intimate character, overtaken by the values of an artificial illusion that's reflected through our collapsing cities.

This is the concept behind the creation of the "In Landscapes" series.

Exploring the area around Athens' metropolitan area for this series of photographs, I also tried to analyze the landscape as a completely distinctive language, in terms of the photographic representation of an area, the aesthetical complexity and the philosophical impact upon the understanding of our lives. After all, the crucial and tense historical period that our country is going through today created a demand for an in-depth overview of our present civilization and way of living.

Reflecting on these elements, I tried to approach and comprehend the bare essence of the landscape's structure and incorporate in the series several variations of more abstract landscape images. Next to images of larger scale landscapes like mountains, meadows or seas, I decided to place some miniature equivalents that would reflect the same dynamics with the larger ones, this time in a more personal and immediate way, exactly because of their miniature nature. The image Kyma (meaning "wave" in Greek), is part of these miniature landscapes which are meant to be presented next to the large scale ones of this series.

The preservation of these dynamics was one of the key elements that led to the specific narrative this project has. The landscape presented as an illimitable, extended state of mind. A private, unknown language that feels both personal and universal. Intimate in a distant, unfamiliar way.

- Petros Koublis