In the series Unspoken Places I attempt to explore uncharted urban and peri-urban aspects of contemporary reality, with a glimpse that is mainly personal. Thus, the photographic depiction of the Attica landscape is neither objective nor representative. We encounter these landscapes quite often, we even cross them on a daily basis and yet rarely do we observe or take pictures of them. They are neither beautiful, ugly and definitely nor photogenic. They are not destined to be seen, except maybe as a blur through the car window or like a background to our daily routine. These places have no name and reveal no secrets to passers-by, they do not tell their story to “strangers.” These places are not tourist attractions. They owe their existence to human activities or failures; they owe their charm to their deafening silence and contradictions.
They constitute an alternative aspect of my country, the place where I exist.
Babis Kougemitros, Athens, Greece
These pictures are the product of my last two-year wandering in several places and areas of Attica (Greece), the zone between the city edges and the countryside. Edgelands depicts vague, ambiguous and constantly-changing landscapes that people often reject as being ugly or aesthetically unworthy.
This time I escaped the Athens city centre, the chaos, the perpetual mobility of the crowd; this time I turned my eyes to the edges of the city, where the spectacular and eye-catching frame tend to fade and disappear into the hazy and disordered flora. I ran off the main highway and followed much more peripheral roads — an uncharted road network, stretched like a web in the Attica basin, which indiscreetly unites underpopulated areas, industrial zones and slums. These are the narrow and insignificant roads we take when we’ve lost our way; these are the in-between areas which constitute the passageway from the city to the countryside.
All in all, my nocturnal wanderings in these places — so close to Athens but still so distant — revive the question of what is beautiful and what is ugly, what is significant and what is trivial — but most importantly where the heart of the city beats hard and unceasingly.
— Babis Kougemitros, Athens, Greece