Saturday, April 19, 2008

Confessions and complains...

foto 1 - shadow theater figure

foto 2 - the dead friend

In a scene of the famous film "Matrix", the android agent Smith gives the following underestimating and disdained comment about human beings : "You are like goats. You establish yourselves in a place, you overexploit it, you destroy it, and then you move to a new place where you do exactly the same..."
Agent Smith was right.

Many years ago, I constructed a miniature of a swadow theater scene, made by cardboard. I decorated it and I painted an old street performer. I liked it very much and gave it as a present to a still beloved friend, who is a painter. He liked it too. What he did afterwards was that he copied it, in a way, and made an oil painting. When i saw it he confessed with a friendly smile: "I`ve alvays copied your things". I did not give any further comment, as I use to do... The other days, all of a sudden, this little picture came to my mind. I called him and asked if he still has it. " Oh", he said, "I gave it as a present to my brother-in law, but he´s dead now. His wife hated him and I´m sure she has destroyed it". I did not give him any further comment...

Some years ago, I did another painting. It was a boat with five manges on it, ( foto 2 - though you can the see four of them), playing and singing. One of them, (the first from the left and green one) is dead. The meaning is that the others invited him to leave the Other World for a while, and come to them so that they could play and sing. Two small and transparent angels are flying over the boat, offering the dead musician a small glass of retsina and a string of beads. I emailed the picture to where it still is. Somebody published the picture to Google Images rebetiko and an "intelligent" Greek (intelligent is, mainly, synonym to "cunning" in Greece)(...) copied it and used it as a cover to a CD with rebetiko songs. No comments...

A lot of years ago, I was "sculpturing" on cardboard, with a hummer and a special tool, a shadow theater figure (foto 1). This old fashioned tecnique takes a lot of time and is monotonous. (I`m publishing half of the foto because I don`t feel like giving a similar opportunity to another cunning person). I remember that while I was working, I felt like a pensioner who was trying to spend his time. I`m saying that because I often get the same feeling when I`m posting texts about details of rebetiko. This music is drawned - no matter what we believe - like "Phlebas the Phoenician" ( ) and there are only CD`s floating on the surface of the sea. At the same time I feel that the path I`m following is not nostalgic ( see 8 Januari 2008 - in Greek). I`m drawing parallels all the time between that time and our time and I`m trying to show out that we won`t find the real rebetiko masterpieces only in focusing to a couple of hundreds of them... I`m also trying to say that we are still inside the storm caused by throwing the Mikrasiatika into the darkness (1937). I insist that only there you can find the origins of manges, the real singers, the real composers, the warm heart of this music!

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