CULTURE

National Gallery grants historic city of Nafplion a branch of its own

NAFPLION – Works of great artistic and historical value which lucidly reflect the Greek struggle for independence have now found a permanent home at the National Gallery’s new branch in Nafplion. The new museum, yet another gem in the first capital of Greece, was inaugurated by the President of the Republic, Costis Stephanopoulos, last Saturday. It is situated in a beautifully restored neoclassical building (the restoration was funded by the Alexandros A. Onassis Foundation). Nafplion, of course, was the ideal city to host a museum dedicated to the 1821 struggle. «We owed this city a gift,» noted Marina Lambraki-Plaka, the National Gallery’s director, at a recent press conference, «given its glorious history and its connection to the Greek revolution.» Together with Dr Olga Mentzafou, Lambraki-Plaka chose works by prominent Greek and foreign artists from the National Gallery’s collection and the Euripides Koutlidis Foundation. Divided into five themes, the new museum’s permanent display works as a history lesson: «Scenes from the struggle: battles and heroes,» «the dying heroes,» «the struggle at sea,» «the suffering of war» and «New Greece» showcase works by Theodoros Vryzakis, Constantinos Volanakis and Nikolas Gyzis among others. The museum will also host temporary shows. Currently on display is a collection of engravings from the Yiannis Fotopoulos family collection.