As museums and galleries re-open in the Greek capital of Athens, they’re joined by an unprecedented wave of fantastic new openings and temporary events throughout 2021. This surge in energy has been catalysed by the 200th anniversary of the Greek War of Independence in 1821. After two centuries of the modern Greek state, Athens’ cultural scene has never been more vibrant.
The ghosts of Athens’ abandoned 1930s Public Tobacco Factory have been banished to transform this cavernous post-industrial building into a place of artistic discovery. NEON, one of the most exciting forces in Athenian contemporary art, launches the new space with Portals, a group show inspired by the pandemic.
THE NATIONAL GALLERY
The redeveloped National Gallery opened this spring and is the place to learn how modern Greek art and history come together, within a global artistic context. The gallery is at the vanguard of celebrations for 200 years of Greek independence, with a special programme of exhibitions and events throughout 2021.
This contemporary art gallery-come-ethnographic museum might just be Athens’ best kept secret. Hidden away behind tall perimeter walls, this converted house and stables in the eastern suburbs is a serene enclave to discover Greek folk artefacts and one of the finest collections of 20th century Greek art.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART – EMST
This former brewery turned gallery is as chic on the outside as on the inside. Its impressive permanent collection and temporary exhibitions reveal the cutting edge of Greek contemporary art today. The beer may have stopped flowing years ago, but art aficionados will still find plenty to wet their whistles.
THE GOULANDRIS MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART
The new Goulandris unveils a world-class private collection, exquisitely curated and displayed with state-of-the art lighting: Tell me paintings that appear to glow aren’t back-lit!? It’s also a great jumping off point for up-and-coming Pangrati’s retro art cinemas and indie galleries, like Life Sport.
THE INTERMISSION, RODEO,CARWAN
Polidefkous Street is fast emerging as a little-known art hub, just two blocks away from the mighty Piraeus port. Hidden among warehouses and workshops which still supply Greece’s maritime industry, you’ll find some of Athens’ most forward-thinking galleries: Rodeo Gallery, The Intermission and Carwan Gallery.
Source: Alternative Athens