Friday 26 February 2021

Contemporary Greek Art at the Goulandris Museum

Contemporary Greek Art at the Goulandris Museum, Athens.

Four floors housed the permanent exhibition of the Museum. Contemporary Greek Art was on the fourth floor where we were able to view some known favourites and some I had seen for the first time.

Tasos Mantzavinos, Statue on the Shore, 2018, (acrylic and oil on canvas)

Sotiris Sorogas, Old Wood in Shipyard at Salamis, 2014, (acrylic on canvas)

Marina Karella, Monument to the Shadows, 1985, (oil on canvas)

Sofia Vari, The Day of Days, 2005, (Thassos marble)

Demosthenes Kokkinidis, Demonstration, 1980, (acrylic on canvas)

Alekos Fassianos, A Wonderful Day (Morning Cyclist), 1992, (acrylic on canvas)

Pavlos Samios, Waiting, 1985, (acrylic on canvas)

Daphne Angelidou, Coffee Shop at Night, 2016-2017, (acrylic on canvas)

Irini Iliopoulou, Rainy Days, 2005, (oil on canvas)

Stephanos Daskalakis, Deep Down I am a Matter of Light... 2015, (oil on canvas)

Michalis Madenis, Field of Ares Vii, 2017, (oil on canvas)

Maria Filopoulou, Pool, 2009, (oil on canvas)

Giorgos Rorris, Portrait of Vassili and Elise Goulandris, 2017-2018, (oil on canvas)

Wednesday 24 February 2021


It's always a joy to see the first iris on this patch of Jephson Gardens. Unlike the iris that are most common in British gardens this one flowers in early February. Its single blooms are held 10-20 cm above ground level.

Sunday 21 February 2021

Saying goodbye...

A friend and fellow activist died last week. Due to current circumstances and restrictions, only relatives and very close friends were invited to the funeral. In honour of his memory people decided to line the funeral cortege route so, five spots were selected. We chose to stand outside the Parish Church and were impressed by the turn out. We heard that the other spots were equally well-attended, except for the spot at the Sydenham Estate where our friend used to live, which was packed.

Across the road, outside the Post Office sorting office, some of his ex-colleagues stood to show their respect.

It was very moving, and the occasion gave us a chance to say good bye to our friend.


Thursday 18 February 2021

Ceramics at the Goulandris Museum in Athens

The Goulandris Museum in Pagrati, Athens

Like many Greek shipowners, Basil and Elise Goulandris have contributed extensively to the art scene in Greece. The latest addition is the new Museum of Modern At in Pagratik. Housed in a 1920's neoclassical mansion, with a ten-storey new extension (five of which are below ground), the new museum has an impressive art collection.

I visited the museum in September and had the chance to look at the permanent collection which spans four floors: two exhibit Geek modern artists while the other two are dedicated to international ones.  Unfortunately, there were no temporary exhibitions due to the pandemic.

This first post is a short one, just 3 ceramics by Picasso.

Pablo Picasso, Still Life with Spoon, 1952, (partially ceramic plate)

Pablo Picasso, Gothic Pitcher with Leaves, 1952, (painted and engraved white earthenware, glazed in the interior)

Pablo Picasso, Woman's Head with Crown of Flowers, (partially glazed terracotta plaque)

Monday 15 February 2021

A walk in Glyfada

It's been so cold here in the last few days that I decided to work on a post about one of our last walks in Greece before we left for the UK. We had been under lockdown for six weeks and had to stay in our area, but we both had dental appointments in Glyfada and after we finished with the dentist, given that we were there already,  we thought that we might as well go for our daily walk in Glyfada.

We started by walking along this quay

this small, pebbled beach on our right.

on our left these small boats

this huge private yacht at anchor in the open sea is always there at this time of year.

At the end of the pier we could see the coast, the place where we had started from.

Lots of small boats around here.

As we were retracing our steps on the pier we stopped to have a look at the fisherpeople's stalls - most of them were closed

but this man was at work, cleaning his catch

 a nice pair of boats

There's a number of bays on this stretch, all beaches, mostly deserted in the middle of winter

We reached the end of the pier and came to To Maridaki (The Little Whitebait), a restaurant that we used to frequent.

All shut now. The government, or the council, I am not sure which, shut down all the bars and restaurants along this stretch because the area is going to be redeveloped, they say - what they mean is it's going to be gentrified and most people won't be able to afford to come and eat or drink here anymore. To Maridaki was very affordable and it was always packed. They closed all these places down three years ago and they just sit there, abandoned, and no work has started - it will probably be another few years before they start. It's such a shame!

This is another restaurant (the cooking and serving used to be carried out behind us, across the road). This was quite expensive, serving fresh fish.

We came to another quay 

small boats again

a winter swimmer braving the cold

Across the road we can see a former hotel (this is abandoned as well now) with a restaurant on the ground floor.

The tables and chairs were here. One of my aunts used to take us, all of her nieces,  here for a meal. We had good times.

The last quay on this stretch, and we could not walk any further

So we turned back, walked along this path

to where we started from, To Maridaki on our left

Past Zervas, a cafeteria and ouzeri. We used to like coming here for ouzos and meze - all shut down now.

Past the tennis courts

past another little harbour with little boats

on our right, on the other side of the tramline and the hardly used road is the old town hall, now an art gallery, but we were under lockdown so it was shut

We walked on the path rather than the sandy beaches

but we were very near the boats

This stretch has some wonderful houses, rich people's houses and it's always nice to have a look. They say that, years ago,  Onasis tried to buy a house here, but no one would sell.

This is one of my favourites

a lot of them are hidden behind high walls and trees

the tramline on our right

another beach - I think there are six along this stretch

high walls and palm trees - no sight of the house

the beach was deserted

Each house is different, architect-built

a new apartment building in the process of being completed

a children's play area on our left, right by the beach

I like the ship - it must be lovely playing here

We had reached one of the tram stops

This house was one of my favourites when I was a kid

because of the conical tower, I guess

Meanwhile, a tram was arriving

We had now reached a stretch where the houses are completely hidden by either a wall or trees

This is another favourite

another small harbour

This is the last cafeteria on this stretch of the coast, and this one, miraculously has been kept open - it's closed at the moment because of lockdown, but we stopped here a few times last year for ouzos

Time to end our walk soon, so we had a good look at these boats,

at this, the last beach,

walked past this house, and made our way to the main road in order to catch a taxi that would take us home.  We did not use any public transport this time round, as we felt it was not safe.