Autumn in Athens

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A Magical Tour of Greece. Part 3: Mountains

In the third and final leg of his Magical Tour, John Kittmer takes us atop mountains he has yet to conquer, across inhospitable cliffs that plunge into turbid, inky waters. In my gloomier and lonelier moments in the ambassador’s office in the ugly concrete block of the Athens Embassy, I would part the bomb curtains at the wind...

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Constantin Xenakis and his Poetic City

Celebrated Greek artist Constantin Xenakis passed away in Paris on June 6, leaving behind a great body of work. His works reflected his own cultural influences and included the written script, symbols and codes of everyday life, traffic signs, alchemy, the zodiac, mathematical and chemical symbols, Egyptian hieroglyphics, letters from the...

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Wash your hands!

Peter Economides, the brand strategist whose work is focussed on change and the strategic responses to shifting culture, consumer habits and behaviour, gives us his reading of how we need to evolve into gentler, softer, more sensitive, more humane versions of ourselvesin our post-Covid world. His view is that brand strategy needs to be sp...

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Because I’m not yet cured of Happiness

Yannis Zervos is probably Athens' most colourful, entertaining story-teller, traversing continents and characters in his engaging prose. In Passage to Paradise, Hellenic Sketches of the Mind, so named for the delightfully appointed house and garden he grew up in, Zervos paints a vivid picture of life in post-war Greece and the incredibly ...

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Lessons in solidarity

Peter Poulos, Executive Director at The Hellenic Initiative harnesses his solitude in lockdown to raise funds for those hardest hit by the Covid pandemic. Over a month ago on March 23rd Athens went into a lockdown/quarantine which required each of us to notify the government with an SMS message when we needed to leave our home...

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Michael Ondaatje: Breaking the rules

Michael Ondaatje’s new novel, Warlight (shortlisted for the Man Booker and the Walter Scott Prize), opens with a scene where Nathaniel Williams is crouched over his desk, trying to pull together the threads of his fractured adolescence and declares, “As if I cannot see what is taking place in the dark beyond the movement of this pencil. T...

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The Ornate Finesse of Dassios’ designs

Dimitris Dassios’ itinerant sartorial style brings alive the sensual vibrance of an Oriental souk with the meticulous tailoring of an Italian couture house. Swarovski crystals, semiprecious gems, Indian zari, cultivated pearls, intricate 19th century Turkish embroidery, mirrors and tassles – and over-sized flowers – find their way into hi...

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