"John Stathatos draws for the title of his exhibition on the work of the Greek poet George Seferis and in particular on a poem from the Mythistorima series: "Our land is closed, nothing but mountains / forever roofed above by a lowering sky". Both Seferis and Stathatos share a feeling, clearly expressed in their work, of an underlying melancholy in modern Greece, a sense of confusion and rootlessness, despite the weight of the country's past. Where the myths created by the tourist industry steer us towards a romantic view of Greece, both the poet and the photographer go beyond these myths and beyond the numerous historical references, which so often act as a barrier to understanding, and touch a nerve of enclosed loneliness of the Greek character. "A Closed Country" is a personal and lyrical portrait of a nation. Throughout these photographs Stathatos nurtures and re-directs our attitudes to his country."
Nicholas Sinclair, British Journal of Photography
• 1986 Camden Arts Centre, London, 20/4-18/5
• 1986 The Photogallery, St Leonards-on-Sea, 24/5-21/6