Based in New York City by way of Athens, Greece, photographer and filmmaker Lilena Marinou documented the aftermath of a catastrophic fire that destroyed Mati, a seaside suburb of Athens. All shot on Lomography CN 800, Lilena explores the familiar area of Mati as an outsider.
Shooting on Lomography CN 800, Lilena aimed to document what affected a place she knew so well:
"Creating this series was an emotional and unusual experience, in the sense that I felt more intrusive than I ordinarily do. With photography, I go back and forth between planned and spontaneous work because I enjoy both binaries, especially since this dichotomy exists in my own personality: I love preparation and I love spontaneity. Six Months After the Fire was a project done at whim, having not witnessed the effects of the summer fires until I arrived at Mati with my camera."
Lilena found this series particularly difficult to make, not just because of the familiarity of the area but also because of approaching the subject as a voyeur:
"I roamed the area like a ghost, feeling uncomfortable at times, particularly because I felt ashamed for not asking permission to enter strangers' homes. A fire cannot undermine the emotional value of one's property, just as the state of a home does not determine its sacredness. I initially questioned my right to even be there, but the shock I felt from that landscape shifted my focus from such insecurities to concentrating on doing this project justice. I knew I was there only for compassion and empathy. I was there to see the remains of a place in which I spent most of my childhood for myself and to record facts presenting a bitter truth but, most importantly, exhibiting how it has grown."