interview with ZOE KTENA

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 A Deep ..Dark and..Dreamy photographer from Greece. Delve into her iconography!














AM:How did you take the decision to be a photographer?
I was playing around with a camera since I remember myself; However, a couple of years ago I started taking photography more seriously by studying a lot of its history and some technical stuff, trying various themes and styles & experimenting a lot with film as well.  So I think the only decision I really made was on my thematic and the means (equipment) I would use. 
 AM:Whose work has influenced you most?
Andrei Tarkovsky.  It's quite an embarrassing story. I didn't know who he was until a journalist likened a project of mine to Tarkovsky.  So I did the research, I read about him, found his photography portfolios and watched all of his movies cause it was truly love at first sight. The atmosphere & the naturalness combined with a spiritual crisis and melancholy - he spoke to my soul; it's weird, because it's like he influenced me in retrospect, but he totally defined my point of view.  
I generally admire André Kertesz, Ingmar Bergman, David Lynch, Stanley Kubrick and Paul Strand to name a few. 
AM: Your photography, mostly, is a dedication in contrast. How would you describe your aesthetics?
I'm usually either up or down in my life in general, and that appears in my photos too, without consciously pursuing it all. I believe my ''aesthetics'' have a fixed thematic like nostalgia, romance, dreamy & cinematic sceneries and simplicity, all depicted in a dark way I guess. I like portraying these themes in a ''high''-contrast way.  When it comes to photographing people, I'm attracted to strong, interesting and sometimes eccentric personalities that are not afraid to show their ''feminine'' side.
AM: Your Photography (Color and B&W too) has a strong sense of Melancholy. What do you aim to communicate with the viewer through your work?
As I said before, I shoot and edit my photos automatically, I put my character in them spontaneously – I think that we all do - and I find it reasonable. Generally, I am a nostalgic type of person, I especially miss times and eras I wasn't even alive at the time and for better or for worse I'm into the past much more than I'm in the future, mostly regarding arts. I don't think that I intend to pass anything specific to people, I like the fact that every single artwork can cause so many different emotions and thoughts by themselves, so I don't really want to ''analyze'' my photographs or explain anything much.  
AM: Is the Internet a destructive development for the art of photography or you think open new opportunities for you?
Photography thanks to the internet and social media is facing an entirely new reality. All arts are in some way. It's a very controversial issue, however, I don't think that this is bad at all. I understand the reactions and the displeasure that many may feel -there is so much variety and resemblance among most of the photos and the photographers as well, that many feel threatened by that, somehow.
For me when it comes to art it's the more the merrier. I enjoy the fact that there are so many beautiful works and artists everywhere with the ability to share their work with the rest of the world. It also proves that technical equipment or photography degrees don't matter that much; all you need is a camera, whether it's a cell phone camera or a DSLR, etc.
AM: What other forms of Art do you believe impact your photography?
Cinema for sure. I think it's the art that involves all the other form of arts and I love that. Also books. A writer can create very vivid images and atmospheres in our minds, sometimes much better than many visual arts can do. Also painting but to a lesser extent; I'm not very familiar with arts like painting, sculpture, etc at the moment. 
AM: What's next for the future? Tell me few things about your next projects
To be honest I'm really busy with a lot of other stuff –including my school- right now, so I don't have any specific ideas or projects coming up at the moment. However, there's a self-portrait project I'm working on since summer, but I'm not sure at all about when it is going to be completed and published; maybe in the next months. 
AM: Zoe thanks for the interview!   




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