Ode to the Perished (2011)
Concrete canvas, organisms from the Aegean Sea.
Every year, thousands of migrants cross the Aegean Sea between Turkey and Greece. Operated by people trafficking mafias, they fill the vessels (often beyond capacity) with migrants willing to risk everything to reach the shores of the European Union. Often, the migrants’ journeys end in peril – drowned at sea. The suspended shapes in Ode to the Perished are made of Concrete Canvas™, a material used as emergency key infrastructure for disaster relief. The finished shapes were immersed in the Aegean sea for months developing the same patina of algae that objects floating in the sea over long periods acquire. Ode to the Perished pays homage to the multitudes of bereaved migrants in their fatal quest for a better life for them, for their families and their communities.
Commissioned by Thessaloniki Biennale 3