Tuesday 10 July 2012

A week in Athens. (Part C)

This is the last part of my Athens report!
On the last day of our stay on the Saturday we started in the morning at the city centre.
So we took the metro and came to the Parliament square.

 We walked up Kydathenaion street in Plaka looking up to the Acropolis.
 It is filled with little souvenir shops. I loved the rainbow range of these dresses which are very cool and comfortable.
 There were lots of machine made embroideries with olive trees branches.
 And a variety of little pottery bowls which I have also seen in Turkey and I thought they were Turkish here too.

First we visited the Folk Museum in Plaka.
Both hubby and I wanted to visit this small museum, he for the shadow puppet figures (yes again) and me for the embroideries!
The top floor is filled with various traditional costumes from various parts of Greece like these from Skyros island.

 I loved spotting cross stitch on them.

 Going down to my great surprise I saw this huge framed cross stitch piece. This is the info about it.
" A cross stitch embroidery on canvas for wall decoration depicting Neo Faliron at the end of the 19th century, made by Myrsini Melahrinou of the Alex. Valsamakis family of Skopelos island in 1896,donated by her son Kostis Melahrinos in 1984."
Neo Faliron is a seafront area in Athens.
 On the next floor there was jewelry in silver for women, brides and priests.
Then on the next floor there was a room dedicated to Theophilos the folk painter I had told you about on my trip to Pelion Mountain. This is the painting of Erotokritos and Aretousa.

 And that's part of the room all of its walls were brought here from Mytilene island.
Next was a temporary exhibition of embroidery from Karpathos island.

There wasn't much on the shadow puppet theatre but still it was interesting.

And the entrance hall was filled with more embroidery from all around Greece.

 This one is cross stitch!

After the museum we strolled the flea market at Monastiraki . There was lots to see but I couldn't afford anything!

and we finished up with a souvlaki at Bairaktaris restaurant opposite the Monastiraki metro station and the Ceramics museum seen in the photo. Unfortunately we did not have time to visit that one, too.

In the afternoon we visited more relatives and some came to say good bye at my aunt's house where we were staying. I so enjoyed meeting them all!
Apart from excellent memories and experiences and meeting relatives and fellow shadow puppeteers I brought back from Athens these three things.
Some plants from my aunt's balcony to plant here.
 Four cards with Nikos Hatjikyriakos Gikas paintings and a ruler with shadow puppets.
 And some sea glass my aunt collected, one rare red piece among them! I didn't spend much, did I?
I will be away from blogland  for a while so I will be wishing you a happy warm sunny July!

Monday 9 July 2012

A week in Athens. (Part B)

So here comes the second part of my trip to Athens.
Part A covered Monday to Thursday and now we go on to Friday.
On Friday 6th we spent the morning at one of the Benaki Museum Departments. This one opened a month ago and it was suggested by my cousin and he was absolutely right in his suggestion. We adored it and we will definitely go again the next time we are in Athens.
The museum is in the house of Greek artist Nikos Hatjikyriakos Gigas. One floor is his house, the other floor is his workshop and the rest of the three floors house a huge selection of paintings, books, sculptures and other parafernalia of various artists of the generation of the 30's as it is called in Greece. Some of the famous representatives of this generation are Seferis, Elytis, Ritsos, Melina Merkouri and lots more.There was so much to see and photography was allowed but without flash so most of my photos are blurred.
 The outside of the museum.
A building opposite.
 Sotitis Spatharis shadow puppets.

 The Seferis Nobel prize for poetry.
 Gikas workshop.

 Gikas house.

 A Picasso in Gikas' house.

 Old balcony railings repurposed by Gikas as heater covers.

 Ships painted as a cross stitch design by Tsarouhis.
Kapralos horses.
 Elytis Nobel,

 Moshos  Neighbourhood in Tinos island
Eggonopoulos Pireaus landscape with clothed statue.
After such a great morning we had hoped that the day would continue as beautifully. Unfortunately in the afternoon we were told that hubby's shadow puppet performance was cancelled because anarchists occupied the open theatre where we were going to perform on Strefi Hill in order to do a concert. Our disappointment was great as our original aim for this trip to Athens was this performance at the festival and all the expenses were covered by hubby. Also all my relatives wanted to attend this performance. The organisers of the festival took us all out to dinner where we met fellow shadow puppet performers and exchanged ideas.