SUMMER ART GUIDE: ATHENS & HYDRA ISLAND, GREECE

Recently, Andy meets Warhol visited several interesting exhibitions, while traveling in Greece. The following ones are not to be missed.

1. National Gallery of Art

After an extensive 8-year remodel, at a cost of more than 65 million Swiss francs (nearly 60 million euros), Greece’s most important art gallery opened for the public in the Pangrati area of Athens, hosting the largest single collection of Greek modern art and sculpture. Upon entry, the visitor is welcomed by a massive mural called “People’s Market” by post-war plein air colourist, Panagiotis Tetsis. The visitor follows a narrow corridor to an impressive, newly-built glass building, hosting collections of paintings from notable artists such as Lytras, Eggonopoulos, Parthenis or Ghika. In addition, a temporary exhibition “1821 in Painting: Greece Demands its Historical Art Gallery” in light of 200 years of the Greek Revolution can be found in the ground floor.

Some highlights can be found here:

A video overview, including “People’s Market” by Panagiotis Tetsis, 1979-1982.

Why it is worth visiting?

A visit is definitely worth, to explore the richness and great talent of Greek modern painters but also get an excellent introduction into Modern Greek history and Athenian moments of the past through a variety of notable works.

How to get there?

Vasileos Konstantinou Avenue, 50 (crossing with Vasilissis Sofias Avenue)

2. NEON PORTALS

A former building of the Public Tobacco Factory has been transformed into a 6,500m2 cultural space, renovated with funding from nonprofit organisation NEON. Currently, this venue hosts the international group exhibition, Portals, with 59 artists from 27 countries including 15 new site-specific installations commissioned by NEON. The artworks are distributed across all renovated areas of the building including the atrium, halls, bathrooms, even the former Customs Office. The inspiration for the exhibition originates from an article by author Arundhati Roy on the Financial Times on April 2020 which states that “the pandemic is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next.” 

Some highlights of the exhibition:

Why it is worth visiting?

The show is worth visiting to explore a great collective artistic response on the pandemic. In addition, the visitor is made to reflect, think and wonder about about pressing global issues, and if/how the pandemic could provide a chance for a reimagined world.

How to get there?

former Public Tobacco Factory Hellenic Parliament Library and Printing House 218 Lenorman St. 104 43, Athens

3. DESTE PROJECTSPACE SLAUGHTERHOUSE HYDRA: THE GREEK GIFT

Andy meets Warhol has been a regular visitor of the island of Hydra in recent years due to its unspoilt nature and shores as well as its rich cultural heritage and offering. One important role in this offering plays the Project Space Slaughterhouse by DESTE foundation. Since 2009, the foundation hosts a series of contemporary art exhibitions on the island, including the assignment of the space to a single artist or team. This year, the foundation hosts “The Greek Gift”, a small group exhibition, assembling a series of new and existing works, alongside found objects and impromptu responses from a several international artists close to the foundation and its founders.

Some highlights of the exhibition:

Why it is worth visiting?

The way the show is organised, inside and outside the Slaughterhouse, invites the visitors to really engage with the artworks and sculptures. Worth noticing: the impromptu responses from artists such as Jenny Holzer, whose bench is installed on a balcony overlooking the sunset and beautiful Greek ocean.

How to get there?

DESTE Foundation Project Space, Slaughterhouse, Hydra

Thanks for reading!

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