Polixeni Papapetrou (Poli) is a renowned photo-media artist that explores the relationship between history, contemporary culture and identity in her work. Poli also adores greyhounds, their place in history and the companionship they offer in pethood.
Poli has a unique view of greyhounds and has delved deeply into the persona of the breed and believes their temperaments are a result of a distinguished history.
“Greyhounds have a mysterious quality about them, something that separates them from all other breeds of dog. It’s like they understand their place in history and accept you once you understand their place in the dog realm,“ Poli said.
Poli has two adopted greyhounds, Lexi and Millie, and says it was a chance encounter of the Royal Melbourne Show that led her to decide to adopt.
“Many years ago, we took the children to the Melbourne Show and the greyhounds we encountered at the GAP stand were so lovely and accepting of the children.
“The minute I laid eyes on them I thought to myself that we would get a greyhound when the children were older and the rest is history.”
Being an artist, Poli has a special interest in history and believes that the history of the greyhound is one of the defining characteristics of the whole breed.
“Greyhounds have been involved in almost every significant period in history, from the Egyptians to the Romans to colonisation; greyhounds were always well represented in art and have been held in high esteem.
“It’s as though they know their regal status and provenance which places them above other dogs.”
The inspirational artist is still happy to give up her time to chat about her greyhounds despite her ongoing treatment for cancer. Poli’s love of greyhounds has also been passed onto her children and her daughter Olympia has featured in a couple of candid photographs that include Lexi and Millie.
The pictures were set up as a shoot with just Olympia but the greyhounds decided to interrupt.
“Olympia loves having the greyhounds with her at all times even when we’re in the studio.
“When we were on the set the greyhounds walked straight into the scene and even though these pictures were unintentional they worked well!”
Poli’s most renowned pieces of work include ‘Between Worlds’ and ‘The Ghilles’, but the candid shots of the greyhounds have a special place in her heart too.