From the ‘hooligan within us’ to the frill of fashion, galleries put on diverse shows

– National Gallery. The exhibition «Six Leading Sculptors and the Human Figure» continues the tradition of major tributes by the National Gallery. After the Greek public was given a taste of the monumental works of El Greco, of Spanish painters and the great artists of the Renaissance, it will have the opportunity to see up close exceptional examples of the anthropocentric sculpture of the 19th and 20th centuries, with Maillol, Bourdelle and Rodin on the ground floor and Brancusi, Giacometti and Henry Moore in the basement. Over 120 sculptures and 80 sketches by artists have reached Athens from the four corners of Europe, demonstrating that the artistic values of Greek classical antiquity continue to be a source of inspiration for artists today. – Academy of Athens. The sacred tree of the Greeks, the olive’s roots stretch back into mythology while its branches reach right into the present day. «In Praise of the Olive,» an exhibition that presents a whole world associated with the olive and olive oil, attempts to show its diverse influence on all aspects of daily life, from antiquity to the present day. Besides its obvious symbolism, the exhibition also examines the olive tree’s importance in worship, art, nutrition and the economy. – Bernier/Eliades Gallery. The famous art duo of Gilbert & George return to the Athens of the Olympic Games in order to present 13 new works dedicated to hooligans, or, as they say, «to the hooligan within us.» As always, their work is composed of collages of scribbled-on photographs, with elements drawn from the language of advertising, of show business, television and giant billboards. Their huge works contain graffiti, swear words, notices («Beware of pickpockets») – images that might offend conservative viewers, but which the two artists show every sign of enjoying. – Museum of the City of Athens, Vouros-Eutaxias Foundation. Two interesting exhibitions are on at the same time at the Museum of the City of Athens. The first, titled «Views of Athens by Contemporary Greek Artists,» includes works by 60 artists who depict the city in paint. The exhibition «Great Travelers in Athens, 15th – 19th Centuries» is a journey into the past when travelers decided to take a break from their journey in today’s capital city. – Benaki Museum. Whoever decides to visit the capital’s new museum annex on Pireos Street will benefit doubly, since the Benaki Museum is showing both the exhibition «Periplus: Magnum Photographers in Contemporary Greece» and also the wonderful exhibition «Ptychoseis: Folds and Pleats, Drapery from Ancient Greek Dress to 21st Century Fashion.» Another exhibition has just opened, titled «Our Place: Indigenous Australia Now» with 200 works by the native Australians, the Aborigines. In the «Periplus» exhibition, 12 photographers from the great photographic agency visited Greece and kept a photographic diary of their impressions, from monuments to nightclubs. In «Ptychoseis,» the viewing public will see an extraordinary tribute to dress, a pioneering exhibition with perfect presentation. Dresses by great couture houses, traditional costumes from all over Greece and the rest of the world, as well as a different view of the traditional national costume, the fustanella, are all included in one of the most delightful exhibitions of the last 10 years. – DESTE, Neo Psychico and Nea Ionia. Dakis Ioannou is the owner of a major collection of contemporary art works of international fame. The exhibition «Monument to Now» in a new, specially renovated space in Nea Ionia, as well as the familiar DESTE building in Neo Psychico presents a broad selection of his acquisitions of works by Greek and foreign artists of the last eight years. Five internationally renowned curators chose works by Robert Gober, Maurizio Cattelan, Chris Ofili, Jeff Koons, Olafur Eliasson, Mike Kelly, Andy Warhol, Wolfgang Tillmans, Damien Hirst, William Kentridge, Nikos Navridis, Lina Theodorou, Giorgos Lappas and others.