Saturday 7 July 2012


One of the first things I do when I come to Athens is go to Kolonaki and have a look at my favourite private art galleries as described here. Things were a bit different this time however as there wasn't much to look at. This could be due to the economic situation, but it could also be because we have come to Greece a bit later this year and things slow down in July and shut down completely in August: art moves to the islands for the summer. So this post is more about Kolonaki, rather than the art trail.


We take the bus, get off at Syntagma and then walk.


First stop, the art shop of Zoumboulakis Galleries on Kriezotou Street

this was situated across the road, but they moved to this location about a year ago incorporating antiques and furniture - not as good as the old shop in my view


a print by Christos Kechagioglou.


A shock on Valaoritou Street: ADC Centre, the shop where Eleni Varnadaki sells her wonderful ceramics has moved to the basement with half the floor space it used to have. The artist is approaching 80 and cannot produce as much work as she used to


very cramped now, but still wonderful pots.



The next three galleries are either closed or closing for the summer. We reach Kolonaki Square which was redesigned a few years ago. The new design caused quite a bit of controversy, but I like it a lot.


Zoumboulakis art gallery have taken the last exhibition down and will soon close for the summer but I was pleased to see a painting by


Maria Filopoulou. I love the sea and I love swimming in it and her paintings always make me want to dive in


Kolonaki is the most prosperous area in the Centre: all the major designer shops are here, the most prestigious doctors who practice private medicine have their surgeries in this location. People like to come and sit in the cafeterias around the square and watch the world go by.



The cafes are always packed.



But even here, all's not well. We walked down Voukourestiou Street, one of the most prosperous streets full of designer shops and in one section, between Solonos and Academias, we counted 7 empty shops.


Still on Voukourestiou, one of the most common sights in Athens now - people pushing supermarket trolleys full of scrap which they collect from rubbish bins and try to sell.


Voukourestiou still, you can see Mulberry on the left and Gucci is further down

getting to the end of Voukourestiou


We have now come full circle, back to Syntagma and a sight that is all to common in Athens today.




  1. Hi Eirene. Hope you are enjoying your stay in Athens - even if some of your pictures look a little depressing ;-( . But people are resilliant and hopefully will pull through despite the best efforts of financiars and politicians.

    On a lighter note, I like some of the art you've photographed. The print by Christos Kechagioglou reminds me of Arthur Wallis' work.

    1. Hi Mick,

      Of course, it is so obvious, why did I not think of that? I mean the similarities between the work of Kechagioglou, (or Kex, as he signs his work),and Arthur Wallis? So obvious.... I love Kex's work and when I got my lump sum when I retired I indulged in buying two of his pictures: one print, not dissimilar to the one in the post and a small oil. I treasure both of them and never tire of looking at them. Needless to say that there is no comparison between what Wallis' work would fetch and Kex's - Kex is relatively unknown and his work only sells at Zoumboulakis Gallery as far as I know.

      As for the rest, I agonised about whether to include the last photograph in this post, as I felt there might be ethical issues in photographing other people's misfortunes, but decided that I would. Still not completely comfortable though.