Art flourishes in times of adversity. In the charged political landscape of Athens, austerity measures and the prevailing division in the European Union have taken an irreversible toll on the city often referred to as the cradle of democracy. Yet, there is a pulse of creative inspiration and artistic production. On ghostlike streets where businesses are closing down and rental signs are ubiquitous, new artist-run spaces have emerged and collectives are being formed.
Depression Era is one of the products of this condition. Formed in 2011 and with almost thirty members to date, the collective operates in a unique format: its members are professional artists, photojournalists, architects, activists, and filmmakers who are joining forces in their free time. By resurrecting and embracing the value of communal ideals, strangers from different backgrounds and disciplines come together to experiment collectively—a configuration quite unknown to the mantra of neoliberalism and individualism heard throughout the art world.