top of page

Silkscreen prints

stone memories, Screenprint in Arto paper 300 gr.jpg

date. 2021

city. Sulawesi, Indonesia

size. 70 x 50 x 3 cm

material. silk-screen on Aquarella paper

produced in Krack! Studio, Yogyakarta

Theano Giannezi 

OCPSGY2021_Theano Giannezi_Maruga.jpg
OCPSGY2021_Theano Giannezi_Wale.jpg
OCPSGY2021_Theano Giannezi_Karema.jpg

Stone Memories 


In ancient civilisations, it is believed that the stones have witnessed the spectacle of life long before the existence of human kind, making them the collectors of the memory of life cycles. They carry memories just like humans do and the layers of information that are accessible to humans, help revealing the stories of our past or more precisely from their past. They have the ability to record all the historical and emotional scenes they silently witnessed through the millennia and the “visibility of trace” encourages the perpetuation of collectively held knowledge of the world.


 “Every man carries within him, unconsciously

 the memory of ancient civilisations

 Similarly, the stone is the fragment

of the World’s memory.”

 -Carl Gustav Jung, Memories


In ancient Minahasa culture it was believed that the ancestral spirits were residing inside stones. For that reason it was very important to keep on giving life to their forefathers who had led the path before them.

This can be seen in their burial traditions during the megalithic era, where they used large stones formed as houses with engraved decorative ornaments. Creating an above-ground tomb, a type of sarcophagus called Waruga. Waruga itself comes from the Tombulu language, and derived from the words, "Wale” (=house), "Ruga" (=body) and “Maruga” (=dust). So literally, Waruga means "The house where the body becomes dust”.

The house-shaped tomb symbolises protection and an eternal memory keeper, along with the enigmatic carved figures that have a means to glorify the divinity of their ancestral spirits. Furthermore, the way the deceased is placed inside the sarcophagus, resembles a baby inside the womb and plays a prominent role for the cultural beliefs of Minahasians as it bears the meaning of the beginning of life even after death.  

During my stay in North Sulawesi I had the opportunity to come closer and study the sarcophagus Waruga. By observing this notorious burial site, the feeling that stirred inside me was a mixed of enchantment and grief. All this magnificence was fading out, swept away due to colonial occupation and religious doctrines, as it was considered paganistic. For this reason, I attempted to revive and transcend a sentimental message of these lost memories through my art practice. 

The use of paper-cut and screen print technique in my artworks, as delicate methods, creates a metaphorical representation of the fragile remains of Waruga, contrary to the rigid properties of stones which are hereby transformed into a more vulnerable depiction.

In my search of creating connection between distant forgotten memories I attempted to give light to the ever changing collective believe. I realised that wherever we are in time, the meaning of Life and Death will always find a special place in our existence, regardless the tradition, the essence will live for eternity. 

bottom of page