Double promotion of Spanish art

Queen Sophia of Spain launched two major exhibitions of Spanish 20th-century art this week in Athens, along with Greek President Costis Stephanopoulos, whose office is in the palace where Sophia played as a child when she was a princess. Arriving for the official visit to the president, she found the building carefully refurbished, with all the prestige but none of the ghosts of the past. At the National Gallery, Sophia, the president and Prime Minister Costas Simitis and his wife were guided by gallery director and Fine Arts School Professor Marina Lambraki-Plaka. The works on display in «Picasso’s Century: Spanish Art of the 20th Century» come from the collection of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia. The eccentric Catalan artist Salvador Dali has his own exhibition at the Stathatos mansion, titled «Myth and Idiosyncrasy,» where Cycladic Museum President Dolly Goulandri received the same official party. Both exhibitions are held under the aegis of the Culture Ministry with the support of state and private funding.