A middle-aged man wearing the traditional Tsolias outfit; an old hand playing the sorrows of life away from his homeland on the silver beads of a komboloi; a small glass plate with “spoon sweet” (gliko tou koutaliou) made of sour cherries on it and a small silver spoon next to it, like the ones passed on from mother to daughter in Greece…
These are only some of the photographs included in this year’s calendar of the Youth Network of the World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE), Central and South America Region.
The photographs were chosen from a contest organized in November 2011 and present landscapes, people, events, celebrations, monuments, architectural works, etc. which are reflective of the Greek character.
The photography contest was organized in order to enhance the bonds of people living in South America with Greece, and promote and highlight the Greek cultural presence in those countries.
Second, third and even fourth generation young people of Greek descent responded to the SAE contest call and sent their personal photos from countries such as Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, Uruguay, and Chile.
The first prize was awarded to Avgoustina Maniki from Buenos Aires, who decided to shoot a picture of a Greek-born man dressed as a Tsolias in a 2011 May parade in Argentina. “The piercing eye of the man gives the picture depth, meaning, emotion and humanity” commented young Avgoustina.
One of the winning photographs shows the Church of Archangel Michael of the Greek Community “Socrates” in Buenos Aires. “This photograph is very important to me because it reminds me of my grandfather, Demetris” said photographer Alexis Spyrakis. “With his donation, love and efforts, my grandfather contributed to our society becoming closely connected to Greece and obtaining a house of prayer, where we can hold on to our faith” added Spyrakis.
The Acropolis was also included in the calendar with a photograph taken by David Gonzales from Mexico, depicting a group of Greek born people posing in front of the ancient site.
Theocharis Deligiannis’ photograph from Santiago, Chile, is full of optimism for the future of Hellenism in Latin America. The photograph shows three Greek born children dressed in traditional Greek outfits, participating in the celebrations for OXI Day on October 28, 2011.