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UNIVERSITY                                                       MUNICIPALITY

OF WESTERN                                                            OF PRESPES









Μολοταύτα η ματιά στο απόμερο, το μίσος για το τετριμμένο, η αναζήτηση του άφθαρτου, του μη υπαγμένου ακόμα στο γενικό εννοιολογικό σχήμα είναι η τελευταία ευκαιρία για τη σκέψη.[1]



The process Visual March to Prespes will complete its first five year circle in 2011. This will be fulfilled with a march in successive trails from Florina to Prespes, a process that will last for ten days in the period between ends of June to early July. During the Visual March to Prespes 2011 there will be explored ideas and concepts such as the memory of history, migration, a contemporary interpretation of landscape, the presence of limits and borders.   The process that is been introduced is the outcome of previous years' realization of the process, and will be developed from those who are interested to participate in the process.

The main aim since the first year that it was realized was to initiate an artistic process.  The process will introduce the students of the Department of Fine and Applied Arts of the University of Western Macedonia and the Greek cultural life in general in contemporary concepts by experiencing the environment of the area of Prespes. The experience of the previous years has provided us with the confidence and the know-how to escalate the process creating a travel in reality, or rather in the realities of landscape, time and history. In that way it will be fulfilled the initial aim of the process that started five years ago and aimed in the dissemination of the artistic practice and cultural experience in the Florina area.

In that way there will be introduced in Contemporary Art terms that have either been forgotten the previous years or that they have not been explored until now. There will be an effort to introduce the artistic practice of the artist-researcher-thinker; an artist whose practices will focus on the creation of the artistic outcome in itself. This practice if separating itself entirely from the prevailing practice dictated from the predominant Dantonian practice and its local representatives. The Dantonian practice relies itself by stabling the artist as a "professional" creator of self-referential works. The aim of the Visual March to Prespes is the quest of artistic experience through life itself that will be initiated without the will for a professional reward. A process that will be created because of the need to fulfill artistic goals, of for the sake of artistic practice itself.

During the process we will cover five trails. Each one of them refers to a different body of ideas and thoughts. It is not necessary for the participants to follow all five trails. The participants can choose to either work in one of the three group projects that will be created during the process or to work individually. There will be a group that will cover the entire trail; however one can chose to move from the one point of interest to the next by car. One can stay in a site for a longer period of time if he feels that way. The life-giving activity of the process will be initiated from those who decide to cover the entire distance as explorers of forgotten places and ideas. Some might chose to function as geselle, as apprentices that seek their improvement through experience. The area seems to be to be covered with ruins but it is also filled with ideas that have fallen into oblivion and often into contempt.

Why are the trails introduced? The trails are the main characteristic of the area, an area that was a cross road of ancient and contemporary travel routes. These routes were used for birds, wild animals, pelicans, immigrants, merchants, warriors-so many warriors until recently. The area is definitely beautiful; however beauty is not its main characteristic but the traces of all the trails that are crossing it. Trails that is either imaginable or actual. Trails that have been created not only from men but also from the other creatures of nature. All these are culminating the unexpected meeting with the Prespes Lake that extends within the mountains. These places are beautiful, but some of them are characterized from something that goes beyond their beauty or historic importance and that is the way memory can be traced on them. Places like that are Delphi, Ceramics in Athens and Prespes as well.

The five trails are:



  • The trail of escape (Florina-Vernon, 5 hours)


During this trail the trail it will be covered the trail between Florina and Vernon Mountain. Along the trail there are pill boxes from the civil war era and the dirt roads that are the itinerary followed from the illegal immigrants. The pill boxes are situated on the summits of the mountain; they are the remains of a horror that imbrued the place only half century ago during the Greek Civil war (1946-1949).  In the dirt roads one can see the hundreds of clothes and shoes that are left there from Albanian immigrants just before they reach Florina. They are throwing them because they are dirty from the days of march before they reach this point. This creates a place where they are met the memories from the war and the agony of people for survival. At the same time the trails from the civil war are functioning as trails for an opportunity for a better life.

The first trail will conclude in the site Lakkos where we will camp for two days. There we will complete the first group work. All the group projects of the process will be created as products of dialogue. the months before summer.



  • The trail of horizon (Vernon to Pineritsa site (Varnous mountain), 3 hours)

The second trail leads to the ridge of mountain Varnous, from where one can see the horizon of the Prespes area and the plain of Pelagonia. At the same time three countries are visible: Greece, Albania, and FYROM. These countries are bordering in the area and they are so close and so far at the same time. The concept of infinity is present here, it is an eloquent presence. Up in the 2014m one can see a vast territory surrounding him. At the same time the concept of infinity can be understood as a cultural entity, as infinity of geography beyond the restrictions of the actual borders. The group project of the Horizon Trail (the second of the process) will have one day to be completed.



  • The trail of the body (Pineritsa of Varnous Mountain to Aghios Germanos, 8 hours)

  • Τhe trail of destination (Lemos beach-Daseri, 5 hours)



The two following trails (of the Body and of the Destination) will provide the participants with the opportunity to experience the potential of their bodies and their relation to nature. The first trail extends from Pineritsa where we camped to the Peak of Varnous Mountain. From there we will descend to Aghios Germanos where we will stay overnight in a hotel. After that break we will sail from Lemos Beach to Parades, and from there we will walk along the shore. At a certain spot we will descend with ropes a 50 meter high slope. We will be moving by then in the heart of the lake, along with herons, cormorants and pelicans. We will be feeling the limits of our body, our endurance, our ability to absorb information in difficult circumstances.

  • The trail of wound (Daseri-Vrontero-Daseri)



The trail of wound is perhaps the more intense that one can experience. One can discover along it the cave where the hospital of the Democratic Army was situated during the last phase of the Greek Civil War. The cave is named Kokkalis Cave after the name of the main sergeant of the Democratic Army. The cave tears the slope and is loaded with the burden of disaster. The tail can be divided in three parts: it starts from Vrontero, a village in the most extreme spot of Greek territory and it continues to Kokkalis Cave. Then it moves along one of the more compelling paths of Prespes area, the trail between Agathoto and Daseri. Agathoto and Daseri were villages that were flattened during the Civil War. Their ruins can be barely seen under the rich vegetation of the area.  From Daseri to Agathoto and then back to Daseri it is as if someone starts to walk in the midst of ruins and ends up in the ruins again. And somewhere in between there the hospital of the Democratic Army. There in Daseri there will be constructed the third work that will be the outcome of a dialogue.




An important part of the process is the research on materials that derive directly from nature. In that way it will be created the know how in a way that there will be created works exclusively from materials from nature, that can be absorbed to the environment. Along with that there will be a study of the way contemporary technologies can be used in that environment. In their most creative application the trails will explore any techniques that can derive from the experience of the landscape

There will be a preparatory period the months before summer, in order to fulfill the process in the most creative way. Upon its completion Visual March to Prespes 2011  the participants will have created meetings with history, with concepts such as body and landscape, experiencing the contradictions of the landscape, and the exploration of materials and new methods of shaping the artistic product. All the above, along with many findings during the process will become a study case for the participants and will introduce a new field of concept in Greek and international Visual arts process.








[1] Theodor Adorno, Minima Moralia, (μτφ. Λευτέρης Αναγνώστου), Αλεξάνδρεια, Αθήνα 1990, σ.142.

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