THEZAIRUL: SURREAL PRACTITIONER

Thezairul plays with urban perceptions to transport us to other dimensions. We seem to be plunged into a world similar to that of the film Inception, only to find ourselves immersed in the artist's images.

By Balthazar Malevolent

THEZAIRUL: SURREAL PRACTITIONER

By playing with the reflections, the various dimensions, and perceptive of the urban setting, Thezairul creates effects of depth and volume. In this way, he makes it possible for the real world to cohabit with another world, underground or fantastic, within the same image. As if the dream could take over or add to reality, giving it more density and a new scope.

Perspectives are reminiscent of science fiction films. Who hasn't dreamed of a mirror world, slipped into the sky of their city or a secret universe in the bowels of the streets, under the metro or under the roads? These are the enchanting dreams that Thezairul's photographic montages represent. A surfer gliding on a giant wave above the buildings, giant penguins astonished to discover skyscrapers their size, parallel universes in the reflections of a puddle or in the cracks of the ground... His creativity is limitless!

In mythology, the Greek underworld is an otherworld where souls go after death. The original Greek idea of afterlife is that, at the moment of death, the soul is separated from the corpse, taking on the shape of the former person, and is transported to the entrance of the underworld. Good people and bad people would then separate. The underworld itself—sometimes known as Hades, after its patron god—is described as being either at the outer bounds of the ocean or beneath the depths or ends of the earth. It is considered the dark counterpart to the brightness of Mount Olympus with the kingdom of the dead corresponding to the kingdom of the gods. The Underworld is a realm invisible to the living, made solely for the dead.

In the Greek underworld, the souls of the dead still existed, but they are insubstantial, and flitted around the underworld with no sense of purpose. The dead within the Homeric underworld lack menos, or strength, and therefore they cannot influence those on earth. They also lack phrenes, or wit, and are heedless of what goes on around them and on the earth above them. Their lives in the underworld were very neutral, so all social statuses and political positions were eliminated and no one was able to use their previous lives to their advantage in the underworld.

The idea of progress did not exist in the Greek underworld – at the moment of death, the psyche was frozen, in experience and appearance. The souls in the underworld did not age or really change in any sense. They did not lead any sort of active life in the underworld – they were exactly the same as they were in life. Therefore, those who had died in battle were eternally blood-spattered in the underworld and those who had died peacefully were able to remain that way.

Overall, the Greek dead were considered to be irritable and unpleasant, but not dangerous or malevolent. They grew angry if they felt a hostile presence near their graves and drink offerings were given in order to appease them so as not to anger the dead. Mostly, blood offerings were given, because they needed the essence of life to become communicative and conscious again. This is shown in Homer's Odyssey, where Odysseus had to give blood in order for the souls to interact with him. While in the underworld, the dead passed the time through simple pastimes such as playing games, as shown from objects found in tombs such as dice and game-boards. Grave gifts such as clothing, jewelry, and food were left by the living for use in the underworld as well, since many viewed these gifts to carry over into the underworld. There was not a general consensus as to whether the dead were able to consume food or not. Homer depicted the dead as unable to eat or drink unless they had been summoned; however, some reliefs portray the underworld as having many elaborate feasts. While not completely clear, it is implied that the dead could still have sexual intimacy with another, although no children were produced. The Greeks also showed belief in the possibility of marriage in the underworld, which in a sense describes the Greek underworld having no difference than from their current life.

Lucian described the people of the underworld as simple skeletons. They are indistinguishable from each other, and it is impossible to tell who was wealthy or important in the living world. However, this view of the underworld was not universal – Homer depicts the dead keeping their familiar faces.

Hades itself was free from the concept of time. The dead are aware of both the past and the future, and in poems describing Greek heroes, the dead helped move the plot of the story by prophesying and telling truths unknown to the hero. The only way for humans to communicate with the dead was to suspend time and their normal life to reach Hades, the place beyond immediate perception and human time.

Thezairul

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