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“Maria Papadimitrou’s practice signifies the future imagination of a “coming community”. A community that it seems to be impossible to form but appears in a collective imaginary through everyday life practices. The old question about the role of art in the societybecomes more important nowadays against the recent global economical crisis, authoritarian neoliberal governments and weakening social ethics. In this context, the formation of “instutionalism” is depending on the whole constraint of neoliberal society. What does Papadimitrou’s practice mean for us:  It reminds us, there are future imaginations on communities, there are practices of collectivity to be invented, there are alternative methodologies for institutional structure and pedagogy, there are stands of “free will” that can contribute an artistic representation in various ways …”

Pelin Tan

 

Gestures of hospitality have characterised many of Maria Papadimitriou’s socially engaged projects since the late 1990s, providing guests and visitors with entertainment and accommodation. Three years since her last hotel project Papadimitriou assumes the role of hostess once more to complete the holy trinity of hospitality – food.

On 10 February, 2012 Souzy Tros opened its doors and offered its guests hot trahanas with the conclusion of the international symposium “Crisis Regimes and Emerging Social Movements in Cities of Southern Europe” organized by the Athens based group Encounter Athens with special guests Pelin Tan and Asli Ingin. A trans-national version of the same soup was prepared on site, Greek hot trahanas by Papadimitriou and its Turkish equivalent Tarhanas by Tan. The large pots simmered in the centre of the courtyard whilst guests arrived bringing various side dishes including bread, salads of all sorts, pies and fruits. Tables were being cleaned and laid out in banquet style ready for the feast, allowing for a contemporary reading of Potluck – a communal meal – to ally with its original XVI century meaning of a meal prepared by the host for the unexpected guest.

Souzy Tros activities encourages and builds its activities upon a collection of arbitrary guests united through the quaintness and familiarity of a shared action leaving the anonymity that reigns Athenian streets outside its large green metallic gates. This gesture of spatial generosity forms the preconditions for an open invitation for engagement. The extraordinary is demanded from the ordinariness of these actions, allowing guests to experience urban cooperativeness and solidarity through action and allow it to surface and flow as a subject of conversation.

 

potluck2

 

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