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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 encourages people with cancer to face the challenges of the disease with a more positive attitude, utilizing the healing energy of artistic creation. Its main activity is Experiential-Therapeutic Photography Workshops, offered free of charge to adults who have experienced any kind of cancer. These specially designed seminars of self-expression, achieved through photography and innovative participatory activities, aim to improve the emotional well-being and quality of life of participants. In addition, Eyes of Light develops creative projects to support a wider community of people directly or indirectly affected by cancer, and raise public awareness about prevention. In this context, the project “Cancer Survivors: The Faces of Hope” brings together established photographers with cancer survivors to co-create portraits as emblems of personal strength and optimism. These acts of extraversion and connection to a wider audience seek to reduce the isolation of cancer patients and challenge problematic stereotypes around the disease and its representation, as well as to promote a more inclusive attitude in society and culture.

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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