Capital-A Aug 2008
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Living in AAtthheennss and loving it
, - Art, Culture and Everyday Life in Athens
/ BILINGUAL EDITION
Supporter of the
Supporter of the
A L P H A B E T
2 2 / i s s u e 2 2 : 6755
FRONT COVER To Life in Capital A 14 Conn-X. Vicky Cristina Barcelona Woody Allen.
Life in Capital A proudly supports the 14th annual Athens film festival OPENING NIGHTS Conn-X.Coverpage photo taken by the motion picture Vicky Cristina Barcelona by Woody Allen.
ALL ABOUTfestival life in Capital A
Editor Ioanna Bissias
Director Ilias Bissias
Cultural Editor Margarita Pournara
Editorial AdvisorJonathan Smith
Contributors Lisa Marelou Sophia Ignatidou Rodianos Antonakopoulos Konstantinos Dimos
Art Director George Paraskevas
Advertising Executives Chris Kapadais Dimitra Tsakou
Translations Dora Tsepa
Photographs George Giannakis
Life in Capital A (06.08.08 - 07.10.08) , Gratia is a free two-monthly magazinepublished in Greece by Gratia Publications Ltd.. 132176 71 , 132 Syngrou Avenue176 71 Athens, Greece Tel. (+30) 210 9222501 Fax: (+30) 210 9222640www.capital-a.grE-mail: email@example.com
ACCLAIMED Yannis Moralis talks about his life and work, page 08
AWAITING10 10 things to do in Athens this season, page 12
ART RRIVALS ew cultural events and openingsat the Athenian Galleries, page 14
AHENS CINEMAFESTIVAL The 14th annual Athens film festivalOpening Nights Conn-X, page 32
APPETIZINGValue for moneyO .page 54
AFFORDABLE Summer coloured jewellerypage 56
AMBLING ;A beach with or without a blue flag? page 60
DVANCEMENTEnglish lanquage educational institutionsin Athens and the best centres for learning Greek.page 62
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06 CAPITAL A
A L P H A B E T
In a previous interview in Capital A,the movie director Constantinos
Yannaris had said that he liked thecentre of Athens for one single
reason, which is that in the city centrethere is a great mix of cultures and
ideas. It is here where all the radicalspirits live and this is the area where
the most important artistic and cultural events take place.
O n Pireos Street, in Gazi, Meta-xourgeio, Kolonaki, and Psyrri,we can find concentrated together nearlyall the major cultural events and the ven-ues which host them.However, every September we can wit-ness an exception to the general rule. In
...winterdreams Capital A,
the municipalities neighbouring Athens, many festivals organised bythe local authorities cause the situation to change a little. Thesemunicipal festivals are cultural highpoints that allow summer to spillover into the first few weeks of autumn. All the best productions and performances of the summer are shown inthe municipal open-air theatres. We suggest attending the first festivalof ECM (Edition of Contemporary Music), which takes place at theMelina Merkouri Theatre, in Vyronas, between 5 and 8 September.50 first-rate musicians, sound designers, and cinema directors -amongwhom, you will find the founder and ECM producer Manfred Eicher- willpresent 8 major musical events. We also recommend that you don't miss two concerts by the composerEleni Karaindrou, which take place at the Melina MerkouriTheatre, in Vyronas, on 12 and 13 September. They will be the worldpremieres of the music for the new film by Thodoros Angelopoulos TheDust of Time, starring Willem Defoe, along with her soundtrack for theacclaimed TV series 10.You should also try to catch the excellent productions by the GreekNational Theatre and other touring companies that will performat the different open-air theatres of the city. Theatre goers will be spoiltfor choice amongst performances of Orestes, Blood Wedding, Birds, Helen,Medea, Electra, Frogs, Finisses, but also Blood Brothers, and plays byMoliere, Shakespeare, or Nikos Kazantzakis. In September, if you have the time and energy, you can frequent a differ-ent theatre or venue in a different neighbourhood of Attica every singlenight. It's only for this particular time of the year that the suburbs stopbeing the cultural backwaters of Athens. From October onwards, they gointo hibernation and we will see you back in the city centre. C-A
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Life in Capital A
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While every effort has been taken to ensurethe accuracy of the information contained inthis magazine, no responsibility can beaccepted for errors, omissions or inaccura-cies. Opinions expressed herein are those ofthe authors and are not necessarily those ofGratia Publications Ltd. Reproduction inwhole or in part is prohibited without theprior written permission of the publisher.
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Yannis Moralis, the greatestGreek artist alive today, is stillactive and productive in the
ninth decade of his life. He was bornin 1916 in Arta, in North West Greeceand was brought up in Athens. He hasa strong personality, continues to rel-ish life and visits his studio daily. Thissummer, the Basil & EliseGoulandris Foundation on theCycladic island of Andros hosts arestrospective of his work. It includeshis most recent piece entitledContemplation, which employsshades of pink and black.
Margarita Pournara discovers the fascinatingwork and life of the acclaimed Greek artist
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The artist spends his summers at hishouse on Aegina and doesn't oftengive interviews; however, this time hekindly agreed to speak about his lifeand work. The studio at his summer house isimpressively organised. Brushes,paints, pencils, and newspaper cut-tings are carefully tidied away.
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Even today, henever refuses toview the work ofnew artists; in thepast, he was theonly professorwho wouldalways go to allthe exhibitionsby his students.
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Silkscreen prints of his work hang on thewall and in front of an easel, there is thearmchair where he reads his newspaperin the morning. The conversation beginswith the retrospective on Andros. "I gotreally emotional when I saw some of myold works. I had missed them. Somelooked really good. That's a bad sign foran artist. It means he can't develop anyfurther. When you still have things tocreate, you're a stricter judge of whatyou've produced. In the past, I couldn'teasily sell my works. I didn't want to partwith them. I needed the money thoughand it was impossible not to sell them. I thus decided to completely cut myselfoff when they left my studio. If I know the owner of a painting, I might some-times ask if it needs some varnish. I ask after its health". Yannis Moralis is one of the most important figures to have come out of the so-called 1930s generation. Together with Nikolaou, Tsarouchis, and Kapralos theyrediscovered the importance of folk art, and the Byzantine and post-Byzantineartistic heritage. At the same time though, they sensed the needs of their erafor new demands in art. "Back then, with all those artists you've just men-tioned, we felt we were united, like one family. There was honesty. Back then,it wasn't that important for an artist to get recognised and to be lauded. Whatwas important was to succeed with what he had in mind". Yannis Moralis's work cannot be properly appraised if his contribution to the-atre set design is not mentioned along with his many years of teaching at theSchool of Fine Arts. Even today, he never refuses to view the work of newartists; in the past, he was the only professor who would always go to all theexhibitions by his students. He has also designed LP sleeves for composers Manos Hatzidakis and MikisTheodorakis and the covers of poetry books for Yorgos Seferis and OdysseasElytis. "Poetry is not illustrated with pictures. You start with the emotion con-jured up by a line, by what it makes you imagine. After that, things happen ontheir own". Yannis Moralis is 92 and still retains his enthusiasm for l