Monday 14 April 2014

No Respect


No Respect, 40 graffiti and street artists exhibiting at

Stegi Grammaton kai Technon which has been suitably 'dressed' for the occasion.

In the foyer with the bar at the far end

The stairs that lead to the gallery downstairs


and the official poster by the small foyer before the main exhibition space. The title of the exhibition refers to the fact that the public does not respect street art; that street artists are seen as not respecting public spaces, and the fact that those who participate in the exhibition might lose the respect of their fellow artists who did not participate. Athens has furthermore more street art and graffiti than most other European cities, a fact that is an indication of  its citizens not respecting a city that seems to disrespect them.

Another set of posters in the foyer.

The first piece of street art. A political statement, critical not just of the street art scene, but of contemporary society in general. It's also a pun as 'fame' (to eat in Greek) in some ways encapsulates the era we are living in, not just because some people don't have enough to eat in these difficult times, but also because of the statement that one of the politicians made to the effect that 'we all ate it together', meaning we all took advantage of the good times - a statement that angered people as it's just the politicians and the industrialists who filled their pockets and no one else. But, maybe this pun is something that only Greek people would understand.


looking closer

various tags on the opposite wall


and then we entered the main exhibition space, and it hit us: anarchic, intense, vibrant, electric, buzzing - incredible atmosphere, and so many people

who actually engaged with the art. My experience of exhibition openings is that looking at the art is the one thing that people do not do: they come in order to be seen as art lovers, to drink wine, to chat,  but the one thing they do not do is look at the art.

The other thing that was so refreshing was the people themselves: the usual crowd who go to openings, but also lots of young trendies, 'alternative' types of people, children, 'followers' of the street artists - a lovely mix so that at times it was as interesting looking at the people as it was looking at the exhibits.

There was a DJ, the music was vibrant and loud - another ingredient in the creation of a wonderful atmosphere

I took a lot of photographs, but unfortunately missed photographing the person who was going round photographing those who were taking photographs

Once the organisers put the word out, 165 street artists responded and 40 were chosen to exhibit. They were given free reign to use the walls, pillars and floor of the exhibition space. They were asked the work with 'the attitude of the street'. 'I wanted the space to consist of a continuous piece of street art, I had this vision of a psychedelic space, of being able to get immersed in the form, the colour, the intensity', says one of the organisers.


We talked about how the image of aliens of a recurring theme 


References to classic works of art abound in Love Kills Slowly 


This was my favourite - cubism of the 21st century, the fractured self?

looking closer

Three cars within the space, all three given the 'treatment' 

Interesting hieroglyphics, not sure what they're referring to 









I love the coffee cup detail on the roof of the car - a symbol of today's Greek, if there ever was one.... 

There were television screens showing the artists at work


wonderful floor design 


This was Ken's favourite - I think it was the word Control at the top that did it - another strong political statement

A brick on the floor with the words 'That is your Weapon', a reference to the resistance waged by the Greek people to the economic, political and social policies of the government.

Education as slavery - an interesting concept. Brainwashing by the-powers that be?


We arrived at 9:30 and left at 12:30 and the space was crowded the whole time

Notice the ear on the left


The lights dimmed when the party started at 11:00

I play with my enemies like a game of chess 
The bar was very crowded. There were endless supplies of free wine and beer. The food was appropriately street food, mini hamburgers and hot dogs - again, no expense was spared

I took this photograph of the bar benches, tables and stools at 12:30 when the crowd had thinned as I really like the design

and I love the pebble cushions by Elena Votsi - I want some

This is what was going on outside the building as we left after midnight.  An awesome event. Probably the best night we had during this stay in Athens.



  1. It certainly looks 'happening'! The piece which looks the most Greek to me, rather than of the International style is the one 23 up from the bottom - opposite After the dream and the Mapplethorpe tulip photo in your sidebar.

    1. Yes, a lot of references from Greek art there, Olga. That's what I found so interesting about the early Tsarouchis that I posted a few days ago: his style was definitely international at first, and then he found, discovered his own very Greek style. With globalisation everything is merging now.

      It was a wonderful evening, we enjoyed it lots.