PROGRAM :: Exhibitions
  Monday, 19/06/2017, 20 : 00 - 02/07/2017
Bernhard Hetzenauer - Faces of Athens

The Annual exhibition programme of the Big Gallery continues in June featuring a very special documentary-art project called Faces of Athens, by Bernhard Hetzenauer, Austrian curator, media artist and filmmaker. The exhibition will be opened on Monday 19 June at 8 pm. Faces of Athens is a complex multi channel video installation dealing with the consequences of the economic crisis which struck Greece during the past decade and the harsh measures for saving issued by the EU.
Video portraits, created during April and May 2016, are telling intimate stories and personal experiences of clinic volunteers and patients after losing their health care and being left outside of the system without the ability to afford necessary medication, procedures or operations. The portraits were filmed in key places that represent solidarity in today’s Greece: the Social Clinic in Eliniko and specialist doctor’s office and pharmacy KIFA in Piraeus and Omonia Square in Athens.
As the situation in Greece was getting extremely helpless one cardiologist in Athens, Dr Giorgos Vichas decided to establish a clinic with fellow colleagues in the southern part of the city. The clinic was supposed to be free for everyone, regardless of the health care system and provide the basic health and social protection to all the citizens in need. The clinic was established years ago and it still operates and even supplies medicine for several state hospitals. This would not be the case without the volunteer work and selfless dedication of the staff.
A total of 12 video portraits in the installation, besides the documentary value, all give the voice to the unfortunate people who had suffered the austerity measures the most, by losing the basic health care, staying out of the system without the necessary means to afford it again. The audience is able to see micro consequences of the economy affecting every day people, disrupting their lives, the stories that were not focus of attention on the news, and empathize with their personal stories.
Faces of Athens will be opened until 2 July.
Exhibition realization is supported by The Austrian Cultural Forum and Hellenic Foundation for Culture.