OPINION

Greek strengths revealed

For the most part, Greece’s politicians and private television channels have tended to snub the work and the aesthetics of artists like Dimitris Papaioannou. Politicians have barely had any contact with cultural issues and instead showed a soft spot for Greece’s tacky coastal nightclubs. Television channels, on their part, have always been keen to focus on anything but the works of genuine artists like Papaioannou. But the time came for the so-called «cradle of civilization» to undergo a test on culture and artistic beauty before a global audience numbering billions. The need derived from Athens’s Olympic obligations. And one can easily imagine the sort of grandiose opening ceremony that Greece would have staged had it reflected the aesthetic standards of our politicians or television. The more ingenious and educated among the organizers realized that Greece ran the risk of putting on a pitiful display of the (ostensibly) Greek civilization and supposedly «genuine classical Olympic spirit.» The problem was subsequently realized by the other officials, those who like to dance the night away at coastal nightclubs and parade on television channels. And they all turned to the country’s truly creative forces. They realized that with Greece being exposed to the world, they had to mobilize forces that do not belong to the country’s purported mainstream. It was now up to our genuine artists to rescue the national honor. And so they did. We did away with the trashy products of subculture, and the gifted Papaioannou’s quality team put on a splendid show that was praised by the viewing public at home and abroad. The magnificent welcoming ceremony revealed the strength of the country’s truly creative forces, debunking the myth about the allegedly low aesthetic standards of the average Greek and the true nature of what commercial television and celebrities advertise as culture.