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The new Museum of Contemporary Art in Athens will be ready in February

20 December 2013 / 15:12:00  GRReporter
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Many years after the beginning of its reconstruction, the building that will house Greece’s new National Museum of Contemporary Art will probably be finished at the end of February 2014. However, it will not be opened next spring. "Even if this takes a little longer, it will still happen. The important thing is that 85% of the work on the building has been finished and it will soon house its own exhibition," states general secretary of the Ministry of Culture Lena Mendoni.

The new museum will be housed in the old building of the "Fix" factory. Its usable area will be 12 acres, 3,500 square metres of which will be available for permanent exhibitions and 2,300 square metres for periodical ones. The walk in the museum will start from the underground area, where there will be a large hall with an area of ​​1,500 square metres, designed for periodic exhibitions, as well as several industrial halls. The entrance to the museum from Kallirois street will lead to the ground floor premises, which will include exhibition halls, a lobby, ticket offices, a cloakroom, a small hall for periodic exhibitions and events, a shop and cafeteria, and a small workshop. The middle floor will house training rooms, a children's workshop, electronic equipment storage facilities as well as laboratories for the designing and processing of digital art works by young artists. According to director Anna Kafetsi, Greece’s National Museum of Contemporary Art will be the second in Europe to offer this, after arts and culture Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris.

She presented some of the 450 works that will be part of the permanent exhibition, including paintings, sketches, collages, drawings, sculptures, installations, video installations, photographs, audio works that will be presented alone or in combination and will communicate with each other. The works were created in the period from the 1960s to today by 100 artists, most of whom are Greeks. Among them are the names of Vlassis Caniaris, Chronis Botsoglou, Nikos Kessanlis, Jannis Kounellis, Kostas Tsoklis, George Hadjimichalis, Stefanos Tsivopoulos, Bia Davou, Theodoros and others. Foreign artists like Gary Hill, Mona Hatoum, Kutlug Ataman, Nan Goldin, Ilya Kabakov and Pedro Cabrita Reis will be presented as well.

The museum building and the exhibits will be fully protected by the most sophisticated fire protection systems that will immediately detect a fire in the building and its location, and by microclimate systems that will filter the air and maintain constant temperature and humidity. Another system will protect the building from damage caused by water.

One of the concerns of the group supervising the works on the building is the lack of storage facilities. At a recent meeting, its members have decided to explore the possibility of creating a storage facility to which visitors will be admitted too.

The reconstruction of the building of the old "Fix" factory into the Museum of Contemporary Art dates back to its creation in the year 2000. The project has stalled several times because of the impropriety of the contractors, due to which the schedule has been continuously changed. Despite the problems, the museum has not ceased to function as the Athens Conservatory has sheltered it since September 2008.

Tags: ArtsNational Museum of Contemporary ArtReconstructionBuildingExhibitions
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