One of the must-see works of the Athenian half of documenta 14 is Tripoli Cancelled, the 95’ film by Naeem Mohaiemen, a writer and visual artist based in New York. Tripoli Cancelled is presented at EMST.
Inspired by the director’s father’s experience of being trapped in Greece’s Ellinikon Airport without a passport for nine days in 1977, the film follows a week in the life of a man who has been living in an airport for a decade, keeping himself sane through a daily routine of letters to his wife, fantasies of flying an aging jumbo jet, and reading a precious copy of the children’s book ‘Watership Down’ – filmed in the same Ellinikon airport, abandoned since 2001 and recently a site for Syrian refugees.
Tripoli Cancelled visualizes the haunting yet familiar feeling that the emptiness, decay, abandonment and isolation of both physical and mental spaces might awaken.
When asked about the process of creating the film for documenta 14 Naeem Mohaiemen emphasizes his valuable collaboration with the Athens-based crew he worked with.
Ex_posure discusses Tripoli Cancelled with the director Naeem Mohaiemen, the actor Vassilis Koukalanis, the producer Maria-Thalia Carras and the cinematographer Petros Nousias.