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George Zarzonis, Photographer & Chocolatier


MARCH, 2019

A stop in time, this is the picture!

The stops in time are countless for the globetrotter photographer, George Zarzoni. His spoils include dozens of photography albums, thousands of portraits, a million landscape photos and flavors that reveal the experiences of a passionate life.

Having almost completed his second decade of life, George started traveling overseas seeking to capture anything surrounding him. His first stop was Cuba’s southwestern city, Baracoa. Never would have he imagined while photographing the locals artistically cracking the cocoa nuts, that he would someday create his own chocolate firm, later called “Cocoowa”.

Photographs from all around the world are hanging on his house walls, some unconventional, while others traditional, but boldly realistic. One of those photos is the portrait of his parents. At first glance, I guess it was shooted a summer morning in their house yard. Faces, landscapes and collections, carefully preserved into albums.

Influenced by Frederic Boissonnas, it wouldn’t take long until he’d create his own art book with literary scripts. In 1996 he launched his first photography art book. In 2010, he begins his literary career, with the book “One day in Thessaloniki”. Aiming to imprint through both words and photographs how one day in his hometown is really like.

His house is in one of the most traditional corners of the city, hidden among small side streets and pretty backyards. In his own yard, Leica, a cute and playful English beagle, lives for the past few months. On the third floor you’ll find George’s hiding place. His chaise longue, in the middle of the living room, is the place where he works, relaxes and falls in love! It’s his hideout.

The puzzle of creating “Cocoowa” started when he travelled to Belgium and Paris, gaining the ingredients for the creation of the most authentic, fresh, Greek chocolate. The most unique taste in his chocolate factory is, by far, the black honey. A Mediterranean chocolate, sugar free with Greek honey, olive oil and mountain tea. Nevertheless, a strong taste is not enough. George’s chocolates have an envelope package, a moving letter, wrapped in photographs from his personal archive, sealed for the most demanding palates.

His future business plans include a comeback with a special travel project, called “One Day”. From Mount Olympus to Peru, he’ll guide the participants through a photography journey, teaching them how to capture the best stills, combining the trip with chocolate tasting. Every stop will contain a different ingredient, Mediterranean nuts which he uses to create “Cocoowa”. The participants will get to know the journey of making a chocolate and finally taste it.

People with a personality such as George’s are the ones who characterize the The Hideout Project. Endlessly creative, he gets involved with any kind of art and he is really good at it! Every corner of his home reveals a great story, and if he had to choose only one object leaving the house, that will be a cigar, because he loves smoking on the road.

 

by Dimitra Dimitriou