Katerina Attalidou (CY)

Psychosia, 2005 time 2:37 sec

-Psychosia, where does the title derive from?
-It is a combination of two words, psychosis, the severe mental disorder affecting the whole personality, and Nicosia, the capital of the island of Cyprus.

-Tell me about the sound of the film.
- It is actually a lengthened version of the introduction of the Pink Floyd piece of music entitled Shine On You Crazy Diamond, taken from the album Wish You Were Here. It is overlaid over the actual sound of the stroll, so at the beginning you get to hear the sound of the workshops in the neighborhood, and by the end the talking of the stroller, in one of the Cypriot local dialects.

- Why did you actually choose such a well known piece instead of a more “local” sound?
- It is probably because it had accompanied my youth and my searches in the city to find high spots from where I could take a glimpse of the other side, of the other side of the city. I lengthened it so it would make a contrast with the actual rhythm of the movement of the images.

- So does it actually deal with memory or with a mental disorder as the title implies?
- The whole experience of making this film has to do with understanding the way the cityscape affects your perception of things, and consequently, your personality …I visited Sarajevo three years ago expecting to find a ravaged cityscape. Instead, I found a city that “looked” much more normal and serene than Nicosia, the city where I had been born and raised and where the war had not been recent yet omnipresent.The cutting in two of an island leaves a lot of marks. And a lot of scars. But in a way I only tangibly realized the weight of the marks, of the desertion, of the barbed wire, of the soldiers, when I visited another and recently war ravaged city and inevitably compared the visual reality!

- There is a claustrophobic feeling in the stroll you chose to show and at the same time the images being superimposed give you the feeling you can’t see clearly.
- Since there was given a possibility to cross to the other side, I have been walking around discovering this area that was inaccessible for what it seemed to me to be forever. I have stopped climbing on tall buildings, now I am doing ground research! I start to perceive the reality of things, beyond idealization, beyond propaganda. And it is a difficult process. Decay and hurt! Very often I feel I can’t see understand feel clearly. The desertion and the decay of the magnificence of what could have been coupled with the ugly anarchistic development of the whole of the island in the quest of more and more money often wraps me in a feeling of desperation and hopelessness. Only nature unspoilt can soothe this feeling and it is becoming more and more scarce.

-Where did the filming take place?
- Well, right in the middle of the city, touching what is called by us locals “the dead zone”, that is the tampon zone under UN administration, there is this old dilapidated house leading to a series of shops whose entrances and windows are barricaded. Shabby openings were made on the side walls to ease the circulation. Deserted army quarters.

Extract of discussion with Alexia Angelatou, artist.