Presentation; Culture

Gefyra Presents "Aesthetics of Crisis

September 18, 2023

Gefyra, the partnership between the SNF Centre for Hellenic Studies at Simon Fraser University and the SNF Center for the Study of Hellenic Culture at UCLA, is proud to present Julia Tulke, Emory University.

Join us on Friday, October 6th at SFU Burnaby, WAC Bennett Library, room 2020, for her talk "Aesthetics of Crisis: Political Street Art and Graffiti in Athens, 2013-2023".

The event will be moderated by the Director of the SNF Centre for Hellenic Studies professor Dimitris Krallis.

Attendance is free. The event is open to the public and will be recorded.

This programming is made possible thanks to the generous support of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF).


Attendance is free. The presentation will be recorded.

If you have any questions or would like to register without using Eventbrite, please email us at


This talk recapitulates the first ten years of Aesthetics of Crisis, a longitudinal research project that has documented and examined political street art and graffiti in Athens since 2013, generating an archive of nearly 7000 photographs. Initially probing the walls of the city as an artifact of and site of performative response to the Greek debt crisis, the project has since adopted Lyman Chaffee’s notion of political street art as a “barometer,” attending to shifting currents of crisis and newly emerging discourses: the austerity referendum and so-called refugee crisis of 2015; the growing visibility of feminist and queer protest and expression since the mid-2010s; the emergence anti-Airbnb and anti-gentrification graffiti since 2019; the response to the COVID-19 pandemic since 2020; and, most recently, the turn to graffiti removal as an aspirational performance of the end of crisis. By weaving together ethnographic and documentary sensibilities attuned to the complex and ever-shifting material realities of everyday life, Aesthetics of Crisis offers a polyphonic counterpoint to the narrow and often fetishizing representation of the “crisis city,” i.e. through so-called ruin porn, or the uncritical celebration of “crisis creativity” that casts Athens as “the new Berlin.


Julia Tulke earned her Ph.D. in Visual and Cultural Studies at the University of Rochester. Her longitudinal research project Aesthetics of Crisis won the 2022 Prosser Award for Visual Methodologies from the International Visual Sociology Association.


Born and raised in Athens, Dimitris Krallis studied political theory at the University of Athens and Byzantine History at Oxford and at the University of Michigan. He teaches Byzantine history at Simon Fraser University’s Department of Global Humanities and is the Director of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Centre for Hellenic Studies. His research explores the social, political, economic and intellectual history of Byzantium, as well as its modern reception.

This programming is made possible thanks to the generous support of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF)

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