National Gallery`s Educational Programmes
Since 2014, the National Gallery collaborates with KETHEA Paremvasi, in the context of an opening policy to special groups of audiences. This collaboration includes an art workshop, art activities in cultural and other places, visits to the permanent collections of the National Gallery and the Glyptotheque, as well as to other museums.
This experience with the members of the community of KETHEA Paremvasi is a tangible proof of art`s beneficial effect on people with various problems, such as or besides the use of substances. The main goals are to connect people, who live in difficult conditions with art, and to contribute to their reintegration into society.
On the occasion of the inauguration of National Gallery`s new museum the long experience of this collaboration will be exploited to create new educational programs that will be addressed to various special groups of the public.Thus, the new museum gets a new social role, essential for the complexity of the contemporary era.
Programme planning and implementation:
Thanassis Spiliopoulos, National Gallery Educational Programmes
The National Gallery and the Glyptoteque visiting programme for the KETHEA Paremvasi painting group, included guided tours and discussions on the exhibits of the permanent collections.
The guided tours aimed in principle to acquaint the group members with the history and evolution of Modern Greek Art. The ultimate goal, however, is to motivate the visitors to get into personal and substantial contact with art. During the visits, the group members answered to specific questions, so that various discussions arose, concluding interpretations of the art works and articulating personal points of view.
The visiting the National Gallery and the Glyptoteque programme, also included visual arts workshops, where the participants could transform their personal views into creation and artistic expression.
This action took place in the venue of the community, on the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, in 26 June 2020.
The members of the group created a sculpted human figure and painted it with bright colors that expressed hope, life solidarity. Then, they covered the form with pieces of paper, painted with gloomy colors, expressing their previous life in the use of substances.
The community group gathered and each member removed a piece of paper from the sculpture, shouting a word that described the struggle for detoxification and life. The result was the revelation of a pure form, full of life and optimism for the future.
This action symbolizes the personal and collective nostalgia of each member, who, as another Odysseus, longs for returning to a pure life without addictions.
This work was exhibited in the event of KETHEA Paremvasi, which was held in 26 June 2019 (International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking), in the Historical Archive of the National Bank of Greece. It`s dimensions are 5×2 meters and it was suspended from the 1stfloor`s balcony of the building.
An examination of the external space of the building took place before the creation of the artwork, in order to determine the right spot, the dimensions and the technical specifications of the final suspension. The concept and the implementation of the project was a teamwork result.
The work displays a form emerging from the dark world of drug abuse and rising in the bright world of life. This is the “Rebirth” that comes true through the struggle for detoxification.
Graffiti at the building of KETHEA Paremvasi
This graffiti was created outside the entrance of the Center of KETHEA Paremvasi in the center of Athens, on the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in 26 June 2018.
Displaying the KETHEA Paremvasi logo, it decorated the surface of the external wall of the building, while playing the role of an open invitation to all the drug abusers in order to enter and join the struggle of detoxification.
Exhibition in Onassis Stegi
This exhibition is the collaboration outcome of the KETHEA community`s painting and photography workshops. The title of the exhibition was Photo-Painting and took place in June 2017 in Onassis Stegi.
The works are black and white photographs taken by the members of the photography workshop and painted by the painting team. The people depicted in the photos are members of the community. The photographs were directed to show humor and joy. The painting team intensified these emotions by painting over the photographs.
The purpose of this exhibition was to show the public that the struggle for detoxification is difficult, but it does not lack the joy of effort and hope.
The project Dance-Presence was created by the painting team of the Community “Paremvasi” for the day against drugs in June 2016. The work is a banner of 2 meters height and 25 meters width and was posted in the Historical Archive of the National Bank of Greece.
The work depicts dancing figures on a gold background. The figures are members of the Community, the outline of which was designed in a specific position, so that the overall image gives a sense of dance. Then the painting team intervened artistically in each figure.
This work intends to express the struggle of each person depicted.When the struggle becomes collective, with solidarity, mutual support, etc., then it transforms into a universal value.
This struggle illuminates its sanctity, just like the golden plain of Byzantine painting
View of the banner Dance-Presence at the event
nternational Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking 2016
The Painting team with the educator in the open space of KETHEA Paremvasi
The capture of the community`s members body contour, on the banner
Contours and shades
The Painting team intervenes artistically in the banner
From the creating process of the banner
Works inspired by the National Gallery’s permanent collection
These works were created during a series of visits at the National Gallery and the National Glyptotheque.
Each of the group members who joined the guided tour, chose one of the permanent collection`s works. The selected as preferred works were analyzed and explained in the followed discussion of the group. Then design materials (pencils, pastels, etc.) were given to each for a first impression in front of the project. The works were completed in the museum workshop, using brushes and paints.
That interactive dialogue with the art work gave the chance to the participants to express their personal and subjective experience.
Works by nature
These works were created in the Community’s natural surrounding area every Spring and Summer, from the beginning of the project. Most of them depict either the natural landscape that surrounds the Community or various natural objects.
Nature is a factor of health and mental uplift, yet in artistic vision, it is a discovery of a wide range of colors, color harmonies and alternations of the landscape.
In other words, the artistic vision reveals a beauty that remained invisible, until the group discovered it.
This new examine at nature contributes to a more meaningful relationship and a deeper appreciation of it.
Painting a landscape
Nature and fantasy
Sand, rocks, sea
Nature and dream
Tree in the storm
Tree in dry land
Creative process in the workshop…
These works were created in the workshop of the Community and in the Museum, either with a selected or a free art theme. The use of the workshop gives the opportunity to each member of the group, to discover their expressive possibilities, through the exploration of the basic or miscellaneous materials, and their combination.
The value of the artistic result is definite, however, the creative procedure and the personal expression are most important, as they contribute to the members` effort for detoxification.
National Gallery`s Educational Programmes
Head of Collections Department
Official Website & Digital Media
Curator of the Sculpture Collection
Cover and photographic material editing