continued studio cleanup/a photo from ca.1968-9 / by Philip Tarlow

2:18 PM:work continues on creating some level of order in my studio. inevitably, i ran across archival material; photos and works on paper. this is a photo in 3 sections shot in ca. 1968-9 in athens, greece where i was living during that period. it was shot on kathari deftera, which corresponds to the first day of lent. traditionally, it’s a day when athenians, and indeed everyone in greece, celebrates by going out and flying kites, as well as feasting on the foods allowed during those days of fasting leading up to easter. the location is pnyka, or pnyx as it was called in ancient greece. it is a hill directly opposite the acropolis, which overlooks all of the vast attic plain, all the way down to the sea where, on a clear day, one can see as far as the port of piraeus.

hundreds of people would show up. mostly simple people, as opposed to the upper class. at that time there were very distinct regional groups: crete, macedonia, thrace,the peloponese, the islands, etc. they would dance, they would sing the songs of their homeland, and there was an overall festive atmosphere. for an american like myself, a brooklyn born boy, this was very new and very exciting and, most of all, very moving to observe. some of the photos i shot that day, all of which were developed and printed by marika manousaki, sister of my dear friend, the late painter yiorgos manousakis, became oil paintings. one of the most successful is in the collection of the late angelos delivorrias, former curator of the benaki museum in athens.

and all this came about as a reult of a studio re-org. not bad, eh?