Anthoula Lelekidis (b. 1989) is a first-generation Greek-American lens-based artist who utilizes photography, photographic collage, and mixed media in her practice. Her work navigates themes of personal memory, loss, migration, and the inability to create new memories. She holds a BFA in Photography from Parsons School of Design. She received the Community Fellowship from the International Center of Photography and was a resident at the Skopelos Foundation of the Arts. In 2008, she earned a scholarship from the Students On Ice Organization to travel to photograph Antarctica.
All images: Fragments of Diaspora, created in 2019 and 2020, Collage
Fragments of Diaspora centers around the theme of identity, migration, and the desire to uncover one’s roots. The lives of diaspora are filled with nostalgia, a deep yearning for home and the need to create a life away from it. With a deep interest in the archive, I alter found family photos to interpret a deeper tie to my heritage and uncover ancestral roots within the blank spaces of recollection. By combining fragments of my photographs together with personal family imagery, I reassemble and rework a new collection of memories. My process is not planned or controlled and includes tearing apart prints then combining them again. These physical rips begin to resemble the splitting of families who fled from their homeland due to war or poverty. Many of these images depict symbols of cultural traditions and family bonds as well as feelings of displacement and isolation. This investigation and the need for an individualized story, act as a meditation between the realm of post-memory and realization.
Text by Anthoula Lelekidis