Fellowship, Residency
9 / 6 - 7 / 7 / 2023


Participants: Olga Vlassi,

Reading about Nisyros and its history, I was interested in the large crater that exists on the island and its general meaning. Looking up the definition of crater, in a quick search on the internet and specifically on Wikipedia, I found interesting the different things that the term signifies. The term crater may refer to:

  • Crater (vessel), type of vessel
  • Impact crater, which is created by the collision of two celestial bodies
  • A volcano crater or caldera, which is created by volcanic activity
  • Explosion crater
  • Crater, constellation

Choosing the first term, the krater, as the starting point for a discussion, as the vessel that got its name from the process of mixing water and wine, (ancient verb kerannymi = to mix), I worked with the concept of mixing and collecting soil and raw materials from the island of Nisyros. In creating this raw material going through processes of collecting, sifting and mixing with refractory clay of local soils, I was directed to the curdling of this mixture with a household material, the cloth where the cheese is curdled. This form dried for a few days in the sun, then it was opened. A process to solidify all this fluid material and bind it into a new body. Even in later on with the possibility that this form is fired and becomes a ceramic object, then the cyclic course of the life of the rocks is revealed, materials that are heated and then cooled, changing form again. One could thus see the functioning of the volcano as a furnace.

On the island, the crater “Stefanos”, the wreath (both in masculine and feminine in greek), “the great threshing floor”, marks a circular course. The tradition of animism is also evident, the belief that the island’s crater is alive, indeed it breathes, through its vapors.