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FELLOWS

Dimitra Ermeidou

2018/19 Athens

Dimitra is passionate about creating learning experiences that bring people together and focus on well-being, dialogue, transformation and play. She is a photo artist and educator from Athens, where she currently lives after 6 years in the USA, holding a BA in Painting (Thessaloniki) and an MFA in Photography (Philadelphia, PA).

She has worked in cultural management, organizing exhibitions and events since early in her career, and cultivated her love for exploration, participation and sharing primarily through teaching. In both roles, she often finds herself in diverse learning environments: from a school in a Greek children’s hospital to a top-ranked research university, or from her START Fellowship in Germany to her project with cancer-related NGOs in Athens. Strengthening her plans and skills in the sociocultural field, through invaluable opportunities like START, are key to Dimitra’s aim to positively impact a growing number of people affected by cancer. 

Project Progress Phase II Phase I

Phase II

Project implementation in Greece

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Duration

Dec - May

Project Title

Eyes of Light

“Eyes of Light” aims to empower people living with cancer and improve their quality of life, through specially designed photographic practices. With workshops of therapeutic photography and participatory activities, groups of patients and survivors are offered a tool to express themselves, embrace their self-image and increase their strength, optimism and self-confidence. Our photo activities provide a forum for dialogue that challenges the isolation and stigmatization of cancer patients. Through online platforms and public events, we activate connections with communities of photographers, survivor families, and the public. Emphasis is given on things we all have in common, and share through creative expression. By reducing the fear and misconceptions about the disease, we aim to promote social inclusion of patients and survivors. At the same time, we seek to raise awareness and contribute to increased prevention rates, so that fewer people have to face cancer in their lives.

Phase I

Capacity building in Germany

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Duration

Sep - Nov

Project Title

Therapeutic Photo Workshops for Female Cancer Survivors

A two-day workshop was offered to a small group of young female cancer survivors. The group initially explored how to create meaning through visual elements and how composition influences the interpretation of images. They shared and discussed personal photos, exploring how they relate to images, and experimented with shifting their perspective through re-photography. Participants created ‘self-portraits’ with colored photo filters and mirrors, and expressed how they see themselves. Through the images, they explored what is most important for them ‘here and now’. They also photographed outdoors and found visual metaphors for positive feelings. The survivors, who were initially self-conscious, gradually opened up and shared thoughts and feelings about their life with and beyond cancer. They were very surprised and excited at discovering how their images led them to new insights about themselves and left the workshop with a desire to continue using photography for self-expression.

Host Institution

Gesellschaft für Humanistische Fotografie

Founded in 2006, Gesellschaft für Humanistische Fotografie e.V. (GfHF) supports engaged photographers and photography that deals with societally relevant topics. In solo shows and group exhibitions, it presents the work of renowned and emerging contemporary photographers. In 2017, GfHF opened an exhibition space in Berlin-Mitte. f³ – freiraum für fotografie presents five to six exhibitions of international art photography each year. In addition, artist talks with photographers, discussions and workshops are held regularly.

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