Nancy Katri is an interior architect from Athens, currently living in Rotterdam. After studying Interior Architecture and Design at the Technical Education Institute of Athens and ESAD College of Art and Design in Oporto, she moved to the Netherlands in order to attend MIARD, Master of Interior Architecture: Research & Design at the Piet Zwart Instituut, from which she recently graduated. Her studies provided her a deeper comprehension of design that does not only pertain to visual and aesthetic aspects but it also reflects on social features and functional elements of life.
For her master thesis, she focused on her home city, Athens, and the current conditions that became the foundation of her research and design. “The city of Athens as we experience it today is a city in state of emergency. The ongoing economic and humanitarian crisis that started in 2009 sets Athens a paradigmatic metropolis and a case study of today’s reality”.
“Windows in crisis” explores the transformation of the Athenian urban landscape as a topographic model of the economical war where crisis and everyday life intertwine. The focus is set on the city’s ground floor and the great amount of closed and unused shop windows become the representation of this crisis. Retail commerce become a corridor of defacement and the shop windows are turning into voids. They represent different perceptions of the crisis and time, in line with how many years they have remained empty.
More particularly, in the very center of the city, the streetscape of Stadiou street is taken as case study through a continuous photographic view. It functions as a field for research of both economic conditions and visual interpretation of its shift from a commercial spot to a place of decline. A paradigmatic example, rather than a unique case, it is seen here as an open template for further speculations.
Is defacement a possible answer to defacement? The street can possibly become the container for new speculative moments and affordances. The two-dimensional space remains a communication feature towards the public. In order for the passersby to notice it, to challenge it and think about it as a modern ruin or a borderline, the space that surrounds this surface needs a kind of reinforcement, either spatially or conceptually. An addition of an extra layer that might hide but at the same time gives emphasis to how the city is being transformed and how functions have changed.
The tools of image making create a different kind of cartography, a social study and a detailed scanning of the urban façade as a whole. The further empirical study, including a number of photo essays and interviews, resulted in a magazine edition and a seven meters leporello print. ‘The Greek crisis is an example of a bigger crisis. The template of Stadiou is presented through a film and works as a challenge for memory, activation and possibly both the tool and the material for what is about to happen’.
You can contact Nancy through her page, nancykatri.com
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