Written by Ino Varvariti
Since the mid-19th century, an increasing number of foreign travellers visited Greece to discover the roots of European civilisation. These travellers, most of them men, are symbols of Europe’s expansionary policy, and they came to Greece with preconceived imaginary ideas about the land, based on ancient texts and artefacts. They then produced travelogues, sketches and engrav- ings, thereby contributing to the illustration of the Greek landscape. Under which circumstances are these images and, by extension, and this identiy of the “Other” constructed? To address this question, I created a series of sketches, re-enacting the French scientific mission to Morias, which took place in 1829, shortly before the establishment of the independen Greek State. The French mission followed the typology of earlier expeditions to the New World or Africa. Maps geologial surveys, topographic maps, census tables, records of the area’s flora and fauna, were the aggregate result of this categorisation a classification-the methodological research tools that identified with the emer- gence of modernity. By expropriating and reprocessing this archival material, and by creating new images- sketches I attempt to investigate the ctriteria of selection and construction of these representations which are still influencing and shaping our visual experience and historial understanding.