About this portfolio
Welcome to my portfolio! My name is Nikolaos Paramythiotis and I am a freshman at Davidson College. What you are looking at is a collection of pieces that I have produced throughout the semester. Some ideas and ways of expression might look more familiar to you, others less so. Feel free to explore, completely skip some of the pieces and closely look at others, reject some ideas as unappealing and leave others to introduce you to a new perspective! If this portfolio leads you to even the slightest of reflections, then it has fulfilled its purpose. Nevertheless, thank you for the time you are devoting to navigate through my thoughts!
I am, and have always been, unbelievably fascinated by the diversity of how the human ψυχή handles oppression. Concrete as much as bendable. Repelling to the utmost degree as much as beautiful like the first flowers blooming in the Spring. Our humanity is so diverse, so different, and so is our way of responding to situations where we feel we’ve been put with the back against the wall.
“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Usually attributed to Einstein, this quote teaches us one of the first lessons we get in life: with quantifiable factors involved and ceteris paribus conditions, a certain action in the system will bring about a certain reaction or result.
However, the statement loses its truth by the moment the human factor is involved in the equation. Hide or Protest, Stay Quiet or Shout, Cooperate or Denounce the Violence around you, Bend Down your head or Revolt. The reaction is always up to the person, and when it occurs, it is often surprising.
At the same time, the mildest pressure can make one wither like an Anemone in a well-looked-after garden, while another facing enormous challenges can blossom like a rose in the midst of the dessert.
From its origins, human history is overwhelmed with deliberately inflicted pain and suffering, bloodsheds and oppression. Naturally, I am perfectly aware of my inability to sufficiently document the majority, or even a significant fraction of the different way in which people have responded to this violence against them, given that they are as many as the instances of violence themselves.
In this portfolio, you will find a collection of such instances of oppression, and the intriguing ways in which the human ψυχή has reacted to it. Some of them derive from the material that we have covered throughout the year in the Humanities program. The origins of others can be traced in my cultural heritage, the Greek civilization and tradition. Finally, some emerge from my personal experience adjusting to this new environment and new reality this past year, a transition that was not always been easy.
My aim? To provoke your thinking, your questioning, to make you a member of this discussion…
This work is protected under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International
All the material not listed here are written, photographed or videotaped by me.
“A million faces” (mixed media on paper) artwork commission by Christos Vakirtzis (undergraduate student at Edinburgh College of Art. @christos_vakirtzis)
Photograph of Giorgos Zampetas playing the bouzouki, 1960s, https://www.tanea.gr/2020/01/25/lifearts/music/giorgos-zampetas-o-deksiotexnis-sto-mpouzouki/
Άνθρωπος – Human:
“Μοναξιά” digital artwork by Athens Voice, https://www.athensvoice.gr/life/health/413605_katastrofiki-i-monaxia-gia-tin-ygeia-mas
“Liberty Leading the People” by Eugène Delacroix, https://theculturetrip.com/europe/france/articles/10-facts-about-the-french-revolution-you-need-to-know/
“Visual comparison between the geocentric and heliocentric model” by Space and Astronomy news, https://www.universetoday.com/33113/heliocentric-model/
“Anna Achmatova” by Nathan Isaevich Altman, https://cignialo.gr/rekviem-tis-anna-achmatova/
“Mother” by Gely Korzhev, https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2016/03/30/painter-of-russian-grief-gely-korzhev-at-the-new-tretyakov-gallery-a48250
Cover of “Requiem” by Anna Achmatova, https://www.ebay.com/itm/ANNA-AKHMATOVA-REQUIEM-TZP-Germany-1969-STRUVE-TYSHLER-RUSSIAN-POETRY-BOOK-/254189909782
Reflection on Richter’s “October 18, 1977” Unit 8 Post:
Gerhard Richter photographed by Benjamin Katz in Köln, 1984, https://de.phaidon.com/agenda/art/articles/2011/october/05/why-is-gerhard-richter-so-important/
Tote (Dead) by Gerhard Richter 1988, https://www.gerhard-richter.com/en/art/paintings/photo-paintings/baader-meinhof-56
Erhängte (Hanged) by Gerhard Rchter 1988, https://www.gerhard-richter.com/en/art/paintings/photo-paintings/baader-meinhof-56
Erschossener 1 (Man Shot Down 1) 1988, https://www.gerhard-richter.com/en/art/paintings/photo-paintings/baader-meinhof-56
Gegenüberstellung 1 (Confrontation 1) 1988, https://www.gerhard-richter.com/en/art/paintings/photo-paintings/baader-meinhof-56
Hände, Gerhard Richter, 1963, https://www.thecollector.com/gerhard-richter/
Baader and Ensslin during their trial, https://www.dw.com/en/journalists-unearth-rare-terrorism-trial-tapes-from-1970s/a-2715909
“RAF logo,” by RAF, https://chroniknet.de/extra/zeitgeschichte/1972-terrorismus-nicht-nur-in-deutschland-hauptgespraechsthema/
“Microaggressions Panel Poster” by Common Ground
The global rise of the far-right:
“Cas Mudde at Forum / Debate in KulturhusetStadsteatern in Stockholm on March 5, 2018” by Frankie Fouganthin, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Cas_Mudde_in_2018_04.jpg
“Photo of man in far-right strike”, https://www.protothema.gr/tag/akrodeksia/
“Sexism”, Image via The AOI, https://conatusnews.com/new-left-sexism-patriarchy/
“Sketch by Michalis Kountouris,” https://www.efsyn.gr/stiles/apopseis/166556_systimiki-kai-antisystimiki-akrodexia