Acropolis Museum celebrates 10th birthday with inauguration of walk-through excavation

The Acropolis Museum will celebrate its 10th anniversary with several events including a photography show, a lecture on ancient colours, a concert by Stavros Xarchakos and the opening of a walk-through excavation of an ancient Athenian neighbourhood.

A schedule presented by museum director Dimitris Pantermalis in a press conference on Wednesday highlighted the following events:

– Photographs from marble craftsmen working on the preservation of the Acropolis, whether on the ground or on scaffolding. “They use traditional methods yet extremely effective, that sometimes brind to mind those who built the Parthenon over 2,500 thousand years ago,” Dr. Pantermalis said. The photographs will be on show from June 11 to October 31.

– A lecture by professor Giovanni Verri on the colours used on ancient Greek sculptures of the Parthenon. Verri uses advanced techniques to analyse remnant of colours on antiquities. According to the Courtauld Institute site, Verri used visible-induced luminescence imaging “to prove, for the first time, that the frieze and the pedimental sculptures of the Parthenon at the British Museum were originally painted using Egyptian blue.” The lecture is at the museum’s amphitheatre on June 13 (Thursday), at 7:00 pm.

– The historic corner building on Mitseon and Hadzichristou Streets by the museum will open to the public on June 18 (midday) to show the library of late archaeologist Giorgos Despinis, the core of which is devoted to classical sculpture. This will serve as a study centre for the museum and for any researcher or student working on specialised studies.

– Composer Stavros Xarchakos will give a free concert at the museum’s courtyard devoted to works of Mikis Theodorakis, Vassilis Tsitsanis, Markos Vamvakaris and Manos Hadzidakis. The Concert is on June 19, at 9:00 pm, a day the museum will remain open until midnight, with free entrance from 8 pm.

– Museum entrance will also be free on June 20 (Thursday) on the institution’s birthday, from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm.

– The excavation visible under transparent walkways at the entrance to the museum will be inaugurated on June 21 (Friday). The new site will allow visitors to walk on a metal corridor shaped like a Greek pi above the 4,000 sq.m. area and look down at an ancient Greek neighbourhood that survived from the Classical era to Byzantine times. Visitors will see excavated homes, workshops, baths and streets, Dr. Pantermalis said. “Essentially it consists of a new level to the museum that will provide information about the daily life of Athenians, under the shadow of the Acropolis,” he noted.

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