Dr Stavros Stavrou Karayanni


This article performs a reading of Nicos Philippou’s Sharqi, a collection of 27 Polaroid photographs that depict Cyprus landscapes, and attempts to locate the work’s artistic contribution in the larger cultural context of a landscape that emerges behind a mesh of ideologies. In an island where the terrain – physical, cultural, social, political – is always already mapped in ideological coordinates that ground it politically and populate it with a homogeneous people, Philippou’s intervention in Sharqi is particularly crucial and even urgent. Philippou creates images that invite an evocation of Sirocco, a South-East wind, as a natural phenomenon whose energy creates various possibilities for artistic transformation. In the process, this collection rebels against the representation of landscape as a signifier of national(ist) belonging. The photographs in this collection occasion a re-colouring of memory, and encourage new associations and interconnections between psyche and place, imaginary topos and homeland, landscape and identity.



Polaroid, postcolonial identities, Fata Morgana, queer imaginings, simulacra, nationalism, memory


How to Cite

“Polaroid Vision: Thoughts on Nicos Philippou’s Sharqi”. 2020. Cyprus Review 31 (1): 265-78. https://cyprusreview.org/index.php/cr/article/view/641.