In Dialogue with Christos Yannaras. Philosopher and Theologian. Born in Athens in 1935. Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the Panteion University.
Director/editor : Eftychia Iossifidou
Sound engineer: Vasileios Alexandris
Technical assistant: Konstantinos Nissidis

Supported by Goethe Institut Istanbul & Kulturakademie Tarabya. Auswärtiges amt Deutschland


Video Stills on the Hill of the PNYX (Athens) with Christos Yannaras
Agora Drawing: John Travlos 1935 ASCSA

The birth of Rhetoric (Art of speaking) took place in Athens on the hill "PNYX" 500 years before Christ.
CONCEPT: The art of speaking (rhetoric, which has always laid claim to being both an art and a science) has a long tradition. Some speeches have made history, ranging from Socrates’ apologia (399 BC) in Athens to Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech (28 August 1963) in Washington D.C. and recently Barack Obama’s State of the Nation address.
All this had its origin on the small hill in Athens called “Pnyx”. This is the place where the Rhetoric was born 500 years before Christ.
Concept artist Youssef Tabti, currently artist in residence in Tarabya Cultural Academy, uses this site, where in ancient times citizen assemblies took place regularly, as a backdrop. In his video work, which is part of his, project “RHETORIC-HILL OF THE PNYX”, renowned Greek philosopher and Theologian Christos Yannaras (born in Athens in 1935. Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the Panteion University) gives his point of view from ancient Greek history (see film stills attached). The text was deliberately spoken in Greek language, the language closest to the original language, ancient Greek. The language and location of this project are strongly symbolic and so go beyond their place and time. They are intended to remind us of how people all over the world have for centuries been fighting for the freedom of expression.
On the long term, Youssef Tabti’s aim will be to present the recordings in the form of videos as part of an exhibition. In Istanbul he would like to present the project in a screening. (In addition, he would build some objects of stage scenery framing and adding to the videos (like, for example, a lectern, an Indoor floor vinyl adhesive from the map of the PNYX, a stone with the word “bema” engraved in it – the bema was used as an orator’s platform in the ancient world.

The video is part of an artistic project in Istanbul.