We, Mouries Collective, are a fluid and interdisciplinary group of female artists, researchers and therapists based in Athens, Greece. Originally we gathered due to our common interests in healing and divination practices. We focus on developing connections with trees, plants and the diverse beings with whom we share this planet. We are now working under the theme of healing and emerging women’s knowledge. We engage through encounters and workshops that are multi-media, inter-sectional, inclusive, creative mixes, either intervening in public space or exploring group dynamics through the framework of care.
Mouries members at this moment are Isabel Gutierez Sanchez, Vasiliki Sifostratoudaki, Thalia Dimitropoulou, Maria Juliana Byck, Eliana Otta and Sanem Su Avcı.
The following are some of our projects:
2021 – Meeting with the Trees
An invitation to listen together, read and recognise the knowledges, stories, memories and songs shared between us and the trees, as part of the Lykabettus Festival 2021.
2021 – Mouries under the Trees
Participatory experience at Pedion Tou Areos, as part of the Athens Garden Festival. Invited by the Institut Français de Grèce and co-produced with the independent art space Yellow Brick.
2021-22 – Sketching rituals for forests’ regeneration
Performance, workshop, walk and discussion in the public space as part of the public program of the exhibition Lost and Shared: Approaches to Collective Mourning Towards Transformative Politics, at the independent art space One Minute Space, curated by Mouries’ member Eliana Otta.
In March 2022 we had the opportunity of putting into practice some of the ideas discussed in the workshop. We shared three days in a burned forest on the island of Evia. Spending time with the forest, we found collective and individual ways to connect and learn from the trees and the loss, through our bodies and words. From this experience, we produced a video: Watch video here
2022 – Care Council
Weekly gatherings as part of our internal process of developing methodologies to discuss, share and work with our bodies and senses around notions of care, by the initiative of Mouries’ member Isabel Gutierrez Sanchez.
2022 – 12sqm: Filopappou ́s Hidden Flowers
Performative walk around the neighbourhood of Koukaki and Filopappou Hill and exhibition at Or.artspace.
2022 – Exercises on Dwelling
Participatory experience at Pedion Tou Areos as part of the Hills & Fields Festival. Invited by EIGHT / ΤΟ ΟΧΤΩ – Critical Institute for Arts and Politics.
2023 – Healing Exercises: Inherited and (e)merging women’s knowledges for collective learning and interspecies connections
We believe that the global eco-social crisis we are living in is a consequence of the separation of the human from what is called nature and an organization of the reproduction of life based on exploitation and an unlimited extraction and depletion of the planet. Capitalism imposes ways of relating based on abstraction, disaffection and the very denial of our entanglement with the Earth and all the beings that inhabit it. To sustain continuous accumulation, capitalism has suppressed many knowledges, ways of life, modes of sociality, affections and stories, which have been intentionally designated as primitive or threatening. From indigenous modes of
communication with nature to women ́s healing practices, to the intelligences of animals and plants, they have all been subjected to different degrees of erasure through countless forms of violence often in the name of progress and civilization.
In the face of this crisis, we want to claim and reimagine women’s knowledge and practices of healing, as tools to enlarge the field of relations between all beings that inhabit the Earth and explore the possibilities of more-than-human solidarity and kinship. This will guide us to develop new methodologies that allow us to bond and embody our interconnectedness to re-enchant our relationship with the world and overcome the anthropocentric paradigm.
Throughout our program for 2023, we will consider a plethora of practices, histories and philosophical paradigms through which to understand and explore healing. The program comprises several projects, which include workshops, presentations, walks, dinners, interviews, rituals and encounters. We will produce a film and a publication documenting these projects and activities. In addition, we will experiment with methodologies for reaching diverse participants and collaborators. Departing from each member ́s initiative and curiosities, we will engage with movement, mourning, voice, body-environment relationship, fortune telling and collective learning.