Veteran architect steps out for lecture

When Nikos Valsamakis takes the stage at the Athens Concert Hall for his lecture today at 7 p.m., the anticipated extended applause will echo like a belated public thank you for the renowned postwar architect’s lifelong accomplishments. The 80-year-old has certainly not been overlooked in the way of awards and recognition during his esteemed career, but tomorrow’s represents a rare public appearance for the reclusive figure. Until now, he has rarely surfaced for public appearances and interviews. His detachment has kept Valsamakis away from the public eye and, instead, focused on architecture for a body of work that has been acclaimed by colleagues and critics alike. Tonight’s lecture, part of the Megaron Plus series of events at the Athens Concert Hall, will finally bring Valsamakis face to face with the public. During difficult days for the Greek capital, Valsamakis managed to design some of the city’s most impressive buildings of the postwar era. Besides the quality of his work, Valsamakis also stands as one of his generation’s most prolific architects. He has undertaken over 300 projects of various styles, ranging from apartment blocks and hotels to office blocks and public buildings. Owing to his fluid architectural style from one project to the next, Valsamakis has resisted being linked to specific categories or movements. His work’s versatility allowed him to continuously seek new solutions for various problems. He introduced innovative methods to his profession, particularly from 1951. Valsamakis never hesitated to ignore prevailing trends and forge his own path.