v5.6 / The Strange Finesse of Nasos Karabelas

“At some point you realize,” writes the Greek photographer Nasos Karabelas, “there is no way.” You could add ellipses here: a small black dot for every dead end: no way forward, no way back, no way out. Or you could publish your own anatomy of melancholy: wayward “boredoms” (to quote Karabelas), “vulgarities” and “tragedies.” Or you could just skip to the part about the snickering, eternal Footman who’s waiting in valet with your coat. 

But grasping that idea doesn’t stall the momentum. It doesn’t still the vibration, the sense-shiver of living. When you’re in the middle of it, you want some sort of proof you didn’t just pass things by—just a glimpse of yourself, however blurred or deranged, dancing in the mirror. 

So the photographer goes about his business. “I’ve got no other way to know existence,” he says.  

This series of “deformed figures,” then, visualizes the body’s own ellipses scattering outward into a fine, forgettable mist. But at its core, the body revolts against dissipation. It holds tight to taper and shape, to the lunge and lean, to the twist and flex, to all those gorgeous maneuvers of being that say to the viewer, I may be on my way to where there’s no more way . . . but I’m not there yet. 

Collier Brown

Nasos Karabelas’ “Deformed Figures”

Follow Nasos Karabelas on Instagram, and check out more images from this series at Saatchi