Cart Search

2024 Annual Conference

St. Louis

March 21-23, 2024

submit Remember my login

Looking for a chapter event?

Past SPE Annual Conferences

2023 SPE Annual Conference Schedule

print this page

In Over My Head & In Memoriam

Thalassa Raasch & Katina Bitsicas

Saturday, March 18 - 11:00AM to 11:45AM
Tower B

Raasch - Enter a borderland where death intersects with daily life, where gravedigger Everard Hall still digs and fills graves by hand -- and photographs the process. This talk presents Hall's unique archive of photographs, and Raasch's research to unearth the early tradition of gravedigger as artist. As part of a larger project titled In Over My Head, this collaborative work honors the fading role and craft of the traditional gravedigger soon to be replaced by a backhoe; Everard, and the diggers before him honor a physical, quotidian understanding of death that is simultaneously beautiful, comfortable, difficult, and humorous.

Bitsicas - On June 15, 2020, I lost my father to Mantle Cell Lymphoma. For his thanaversary, I created a multimedia funeral installation, since COVID-19 prevented a traditional funeral when he passed. My performance, In Memoriam, uses the preserved remnants of the funeral to adorn wool shrouds with a skeletal-like floral pattern. This multimedia performance was presented inside a 12th century Byzantine bathhouse in Thessaloniki, Greece, honoring my Greek heritage and the resting place of his ashes, the Aegean Sea. The bathhouse is a space for unity between my father, myself and our heritage, and for the rebirth of my Greek identity.


Katina Bitsicas
Katina Bitsicas
Thalassa Raasch
Thalassa Raasch

Email Sign Up

SPE email updates contain resources, news, and more!

About this piece

Comments about this piece

Dialogue and critique are important to the SPE mission.
Please join the conversation.

Exit Full Screen Mode