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This is a short story about Athens in magic realism.
A film I made in the frame of my thesis in the diploma course at the Bartlett.
In Athens 2013, a primary school inhabited by 300 students has formed its own ways of ruling one of the most devastated neighbourhoods of the city, and is about to expand its boundaries in the following years. The school’s architectural rules demand obligatory cooperation between the neighbourhood’s inhabitants for the production of a jam made from oranges found on neratzies, trees that grow throughout the city and that can withstand its pollution. Obligatory cooperation is applied equally to each of the twelve political teams formed within the school. Motivation for the school’s rules to be obeyed comes from the potential unlocking of closed playgrounds, guarded by the giant tree-man. These playgrounds are supported by the columns of the National Bank of Greece, which now make watermelon ice cream. Allegory is researched as a tool for an anti-propagandistic approach to socio-political criticism in uncertain times, and is designed through a porous, ruinous and magic realist approach. The notion of porosity is expressed in the unstructured boundaries between the private and public realm, while the ruin is seen as an essential fragment for the appropriation of the present. In order to design for a city in crisis, I am using a magic realist narrative: this is not a detailed projection of the future, but a socio-political poetic critique of the present, forming potential ways of dealing
with it through possible but improbable realities.