Monday, December 11, 2017

The Multifaith series


“If we take the world’s enduring religions at their best, we discover the distilled wisdom of the human race.”

 -Huston Smith

“If we are to respect others' religions as we would have them respect our own, a friendly study of the world's religions is a sacred duty.”

-Mahatma Gandhi


“…it is imperative that the followers of the various religions join their voices in calling for peace, tolerance, and respect for the dignity and rights of others.”

-Pope Francis


Multifaith is a series of photographs depicting various religious books and objects found in antique shops, second hand stores and flea markets. These items were chosen for their aesthetic and symbolic quality and were utilized as tools for research and contemplation. The main idea behind this undertaking was to create a pluralistic and all-encompassing type of artwork which comments on the variety of religious beliefs and identifies similarities between them.


The work was inspired and influenced by seventeenth century Dutch still life/vanitas paintings, which often contained religious and allegorical symbolism and generally alluded to the brevity of life and the transient nature of human pleasures. Another important source of inspiration was daily life in my hometown Thessaloniki (Greece), a multicultural melting pot where people from different religious and ethnic backgrounds have co-existed for hundreds of years.


During the course of the project I was immersed in the study of sacred texts, comparative religion, spiritual literature and perennial philosophy. I discovered many commonalities between religious faiths (eg. monotheistic religions such as Christianity, Islam and Judaism have common origins and share several beliefs and practices) and also became aware that “spirituality” is a topic which encompasses a broad spectrum of ideas which are not necesssarily religious or metaphysical. I was very interested in interpretations of the spiritual as an attitude of  brotherhood, interconnectedness and compassion towards the “other”. In Ancient Wisdom, Modern World: Ethics for the New Millenium the Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso defines spirituality as “those qualities of the human spirit -such as love and compassion, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, contentment, a sense of responsiblity, a sense of harmony- which bring happiness to both self and others”.


Unfortunately we are currently witnessing phenomena such as polarization between the east and west, ideological extremism and “holy wars” which are threatening world peace and stability. In an age of globalization but also fragmentation and uncertainty my work aims to encourage dialogue between religions, and also aspires to promote an awareness of the commonality of humanity and a more tolerant and universal approach to the spiritual. The conceptual position at which I have arrived is that my artistic practice is not an end in itself, but rather a vehicle of research, integration and transformation, and a way for me to reflect on the social and spiritual condition of our time. I believe that the global language of art can help pave the path towards self-
discovery, respect towards fellow people and the evolution of humanity as a whole.


Selected Bibliography:

Armstrong, Karen (1994) A History of God (1993). Ballantine Books.
Butler-Bowdon, Tom (2005) 50 Spiritual Classics. Nicholas Brealey Publishing.
Collazo Julie Schwietert, Rogak Lisa (2013) Pope Francis in his Own Words. Harper Collins Publishers.
Dalai Lama (1999) Ancient Wisdom, Modern World: Ethics for the New Millenium. Little, Brown/Abacus Press.
Eliade, Mircea (1967) From Primitives to Zen. Harper Collins Distribution Services.
Frazer, James George (1950) The Golden Bough: A Study in Magic and Religion. Macmillan.
Gandhi, Mohandas (1983) An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth. Dover Publications.
Griffiths, Bede (1994) Universal Wisdom. Harper Collins Publishers.
Huxley, Aldous (2009) The Perennial Philosophy. Harper Perennial Modern Classics.
James, William (1983) The Varieties of Religious Experience. Penguin Classics.
Lee, Lydia (2015) Magnificent Obsessions: The Artist as Collector. Prestel.
Mazower, Mark (2004) Salonica City of Ghosts. Harper Collins Publishers.
Smith, Huston (2009) The World’s Religions. HarperOne.
Wolf, Norbert (2009) Still Life. Taschen.


View the series at:

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Diffusion Volume IX

Kon Markogiannis is featured in Diffusion, Volume IX
Artfully Crafted Photography Annual
Pre-Order Sale: 124 pages, full colour, perfect bound softcover

Superstition Review

























My work is featured in Superstition Review's 20th Issue.
https://superstitionreview.asu.edu/issue20/art/konmarkogiannis

Multifaith: project report

Multifaith is an ongoing series of photographs depicting various religious books and objects found in antique shops, second hand stores and flea markets. The work is mainly inspired by seventeenth century Dutch still life/vanitas paintings, which often contained religious and allegorical symbolism and generally alluded to the brevity of life and the transient nature of human pleasures.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Multifaith: work in progress


Working on a project called “Multifaith” which involves photographing objects and researching the world's religions and wisdom traditions.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

The Culturium


























The Culturium explores the interface between mystical spirituality and the cultural arts. It is devoted to showcasing the compositions of writers, filmmakers, artists, performers, musicians, philosophers, sages and poets who have delved deep into the silence within and created work that is timeless, wise and beautiful.
https://www.theculturium.com/kon-markogiannis-memento-immortality/

Monday, September 18, 2017











"For me cities are enormous bodies of people's desires. And as I search for my own desires within them, I slice into time, seeing the moment."
-Daido Moriyama

Provoke is a tribute to Japanese photography of the 1960s-70s. The images in this series could be described as a reflection of the fragmentary, indefinite and indeterminate nature of modern urban society. The high contrast, gritty and out of focus photographs invoke a sense of isolation, melancholy, threat, inner turmoil and subsconscious desire.

Relevant links:

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Friday, June 2, 2017

Alternative Reality

“Divine Decay 39” selected for “Alternative Reality” exhibition (curated by Ashley Kauschinger for Float Magazine).


Thursday, May 11, 2017

Archive: Soul Vessels



(A building) is nothing else but  a “life tool”, a “life vessel” (a temporary refuge for the human body).

-Aris Konstantinidis

Archive: Soul Vessels is an experimental project comprised of found ephemera and photographs which form a quasi-fictional architectural-psychogeographical archive. The term “soul vessels” was inspired by Greek architect Aris Konstantinidis who coined the phrase “life vessels” to describe buildings as functional spaces whose sole purpose is to serve human needs.
The work challenges the “traditional” concept of the archive: it is not only “important” and “celebratory” photographic moments that are worth collecting and assembling. The emphasis is on ideas concerning day-to-day living, the burden of constant wear-and-tear, and the inevitable damage and erosion of all objects and living beings.
In a certain sense Archive: Soul Vessels is an attempt to rewrite and re-register reality, as if creating an array of urban portals which open onto a plethora of mental spaces. Through this meticulously assembled pseudo-archive the deepest strata of the imagination can be explored: imprints of past realities, which are fused into the photographed relics, are rediscovered and reinterpreted generating new auras of the unknown.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Fraction Magazine Issue 98 (Ninth Anniversary Issue)





Fraction Magazine features the best of contemporary photography, bringing together diverse bodies of work by established and emerging artists from around the globe.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Ghosts_Dreams_Memories (work in progress)


























“Those who look outside, dream. Those who look inside, awaken”.
-C.G. Jung

Ghosts_ Dreams_Memories is an ongoing series of surreal photomontages which explore the world of the unconscious mind and psychic phenomena.
On a conceptual level crucial for the development of the work were the theories of psychologist Carl Gustav Jung whose research involved the fields of religion, alchemy, astrology, philosophy, mythology and dreams. According to Jung reality is more complex than what is perceived by the physical senses or revealed by mainstream science -he believed we all possess psychic faculties, albeit usually in undeveloped form.
On an aesthetic level the work was inspired by photographic artists such as Clarence John Laughlin and Jerry Uelsmann whose experimental and multi-layered work questions photographic "truth" and representation. The work was also influenced by "spirit" photographs of the 1800's-1900's which supposedly depict paranormal phenomena such as human auras, levitating bodies, ghostly manifestations, disembodied entities etc.

Links:

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Thursday, March 23, 2017


ΩΔΗ ΣΤΗ ΦΥΣΗ 

Τι να’ναι αυτό που αισθάνεσαι
Στην αγκαλιά της φύσης
Ο ήλιος όταν χάνεται
Στα πέρατα της δύσης

Τα μάτια ξεκουράζονται
Τα πόδια αλαφρώνουν
Ολούθε κελαϊδίσματα
Τον νου σου ημερώνουν

Το παραδείσιο φως
Στη λίμνη αντιφεγγίζει
                 Αστράφτει τόσο όμορφα                 
Και την καρδιά γεμίζει

Μικρογραφία σύμπαντος
Κατέχεις στην ψυχή σου
Ο κόσμος όλος πάλλεται
Και αναπνέει μαζί σου 

Το σκίρτημα που νιώθεις
Κράτα στο στήθος ζωντανό
Εντός σου η πλάση ολάκερη
Προσμένει αιώνιο λυτρωμό