To explain the lack of alternative to the business-as-usual attitude that is now synonymous with the Greek crisis, some Greeks believe the government systematically sprays its residents with a cocktail that makes them apathetic to increasing layers of austerity measures in the form of new special tax assessments, reduced budgets for public services, and the elimination of pensions and social security payments. Other Greeks believe this apathy is a result of collective debt guilt: the Meditteranean sun makes Greeks lazy, unwilling to work but willing to cheat, lie, and by any means avoid paying taxes.
Following an unhinged and ecstatic Olympian urbanization upgrade, the series of repeated austerity measures imposed on Greece since 2010, coupled with waves of Syrian people cascading into Athens during the exact same timeframe, has transformed the city sometimes in subtle and oftentimes massive ways. Meanwhile, Greece continues to sell public land and public services at nominal values. Given Greece’s geostrategic position, it is hardly surprising that China’s interest is in the ports, that the U.S. interest is in the pipelines, and that the Russian interest is in the railway system. And the beaches.
Abandoned buildings of heritage can be worn by the transformed, disparate Greek faces of the country: the elder non-EU passport holders, the immigrant entertainers, the unemployed and anarchist youth. It is this bedazzled and bedazzling Greece that this series speaks to.