Other series include Greek Poets, Painters, Authors, Musicians, Museums, Famous Greeks, Greek islands, Rural Villages in Lefkás, specific Greek fields of interest and foreigners with an interest in Greece. All the links can be found here Series links.
He was a scholar and a folklorist responsible for the creation of the folklore museum in Lefkás town. He was born in Kavalos on the island which is near to Sfakiotes so the folklore museum there is also named after him.
The folklore museum is a continuation of the history of Lefkás from where the Archeological museum In Lefkás Town finished. As you may recall I said previously that there was a big gap in the history of Lefkás from when the Romans left until the Venetians turn up in the 15th century. Other museums in Lefkás details other aspects of Lefkadian life but these are based outside of Lefkas town.
The folklore museum covers the period from the Venetians in the 15th century, through the Ottoman Empire, French, British and finally when they are free to rule themselves. There is also Santa Maura fort Lefkás if you wish to see the result of these battles.
At the start, it documents the newspapers, geography and men’s occupations like the ball game they used to play which is like boules. It also talks about the activities of the market place or the special events of Easter and Faneromeni which is coming up on Monday 17th June.
The emphasis here though is very much on female life as the are drawers upon drawers of women’s clothes, there is household linen and how it was made in the first place, carpets, examples of food that they ate including information about wine, olive oil, Eglouvi lentils and bread.
It also shows upstairs the setup of a typical bedroom and dining room. There is a loom on display that they would have used so that clothes could be woven. It details the different types of dresses worn by a girl, a bride and a woman as well as Sunday dress. There differences between rural and urban ladies are listed on the wall with what was expected of both. It also talks about the dowry that went with a girl upon marriage.
In the very last room is a music room with pictures of Aristotle Valaoritis, Angelos Sikelianos and Agni Baltsa. This is to complement the bouzoukis you see in the entrance hall. For related musical posts see here:
This contains the Lefkada Hearn exhibition which contains all the information you ever need to know about him, (on your right as you walk in)
The National Gallery (straight ahead)
Archeology museum (on the left)
On the stairs leading to the basement there used to be the Nikos Svoronos Library along with the Haramoglis Library but this moved a while ago and is now looking like an abandoned office.
If you instead go up the stairs or in the lift, you can see some maps of the Lefkás area from ancient times up to more modern times. Also there is well the folklore Festivals held in Lefkás festival archives on the top floor.
It’s open from 8am-3pm all week but the archeology museum is closed on Tuesday not Monday as Google will tell you.
We then got the Speech and Art festival in 1955. After this the organiser Antonis Tzevelekis came up with the International Folklore Festival. This started in 1962 and is now held every August. Initially it had only 3 countries but has now blossomed to hundreds of thousands of participants each and every year.
In the above picture it notes that Maria Callas turned up in 1964 to help kick the celebrations off.
It also mentions that in 1995 the then president of the Greek parliament Apostolis Kaklamanis who was himself a Lefkádian was attending.
The organiser Antonis Tzevelekis was himself commemorated when he died in 1989 after 30 years of dedicated to the cause. He also has a street and a square dedicated to himself in Lefkás town but I’m yet to come across a statue of his.
In the Cultural centre in Lefkás town there is a floor that contains all sorts of information about the yearly folklore festival. It costs a € to enter but you won’t know this until you open the door and someone comes rushing forward to tell you.
It’s worth it though as you get to see musical instruments from past participating countries as well as national costumes and dolls.
You can even try them on (not the above ones but a special selection provided for you.) But I didn’t get the feeling that was a good idea despite the empty changing room and available full length mirror. You get the idea your trespassing during the whole cultural centre not just the upper floor as it’s so empty. It feels abandoned despite it being open, staffed and well maintained.
There is also a room full of objects belonging to Antonis Tzevelekis and these phrases which are not translated but tell you about his life.
There is of course the Mardi Gras festival they have every year to celebrate the beginning of Lent. The costumes always look fantastic from the pictures friends put online and compare to festivals I have been to like Pirates Week and Batabano in the Cayman Islands as well as Notting Hill carnival in London.
The celebrations in New Orleans, the Canary Islands and Rio de Janeiro are similar I believe as there all for the same reason.
Since I’m never here that early in the season (February) I can’t tell you or show what it’s really like. If you like Museums though check out these articles
I’m not quite sure why these people made the list and not others. It’s mainly a list of government officials which I haven’t seen any evidence of elsewhere. If you want to know how I’m able to say all these people have streets name after them, I’m looking at a street map of Lefkás town of course. (Yes I am sad enough to walk the entire town taking pictures of street signs in 30c heat).
5. Petros Filipas Panagos 1860-1935 He was a doctor and a politician, with the below statue and a street named after him but I haven’t been able to find out anything more about him.
6. Konstantinos Macheras1888-1967 was a historian with a street named after him.
7. Konstantinos Grapsas 1880-1948 was lawyer, writer and a translator with you guessed it a street named after him.
9. Anastasios Skidaresis 1877-1941 MP, poet, translator of Ancient Greek and Italian Poets and another street name.
11.Angelos Sikelianos is the most famous Lefkádian who turns up in quite a few places and I have written about him, his wife Eva Palmer-Sikelianos and his poet /author friends George Seferis, etc at length already.
12.Efstathios Zakkas 1835-1888 is a benefactor according to the list and has a street named after him but that it’s as far as I know.
13. Nikos Katiforishas slightly more information around about himself being that he lived closer to the present day and I wrote about him in a separate post but not a lot due to my inability to find the Lefkádian archives.
14. Dimitrios Golemis
has his own statue in Lefkás town because he came third in the Olympic 800m in 1896. He had many other positions to occupy himself but information about him is thin on the ground.He does have a street named after him though.
The others I’m scratching at straws as we say in English ie Apart from basic biographical data I haven’t a clue who they were. Sometimes only the name exists.
There are 2 more libraries which I’m yet to locate here in Lefkás town- The Nikos Svoronos Library and the Haralambos Library. They should be able to help me fill in the gaps.
Honourable mentions go to Nikolaos Flogaitis 1799-1867 Freedom fighter because he too has a street named after him,
Frederick Temple 1821-1902 who after being born in Santa Maura fort became Archbishop of Canterbury,
Petros Soumilas 1861-19? A soldier who was born on Lefkás and finally
Marcos Christino Fioravanti 1775-1862 who was also born in Santa Maura but became a legendary teacher and translator in Brazil.
Thankyou tourism websites and Wikipedia. If however I have piqued your interest and you would like to learn more about Lefkás and it’s people click over here Series links.
Theodore Stamos was a Greek-American artist who was part of the “irascible” group that included such notables as Mark Rothko, Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock. So he can be considered a pioneer in abstract expressionism and is internationally renown for this; but as usual he is one of those that you don’t hear about. You need to be specifically interested that particular period in art and history.
Theodore’s father was from Lefkás and his mother from Sparta although he was brought up on Manhattan’s lower east side in the USA.
When he visited Lefkás he created a sub series from his Infinity Fields series of paintings. This was from 1970 until his death in 1997. It was expressionistic in style his paintings.
He was born in Athens but during a trip to Constantinople as it was then called, ww1 broke out so the family stayed there.
He later spent some time in Paris and served his time in the army as all Greek men still have to do, then gained work as a translator afterwards.
He was in Athens in 1932 to join the school of fine art and it was here that he met Andreas Emberikos a fellow surrealist poet who also had spent time in Paris.
In 1945 he is commissioned to design sets and costumes for a play by Nikos Kazantzakis.
In 1979 he is awarded the state prize for poetry.
It seems from reading about him that although he wrote many poems including Bolivar (1942) inspired by Simon Bolivar, he is in fact far more famous for his art. Having looked at his art it’s almost Daliesque and I wonder why it’s not more popular.
He has had many exhibitions of both his poems and his art mainly in Athens and after his death.
He is one of those people that require you to search deeper on Google than your average person as most of the information is hidden inside of books.
He is the first in my series of painters simply because the poet list is becoming rather lengthy.
Other series include Greek Poets, Painters, Art, Authors, Musicians, Museums, Specialist fields of Interest, Conversation, Famous Greeks, Greek islands, and Rural Villages in Lefkás. All the links can be found here Series links.
He studied Law, Literature and Philosophy in Italy and Paris and when he returned to Lefkas he became the District Attorney of the Ionian Islands. He also joined Filiki Eteria (wiki link) and became known as the preeminent member in Lefkas.
He was a member of the Greek writers society who wrote novels as well as 12 tragedies with national content. He was also on the banned books list because his book While Darkness Lasts had communist content. This was the same fate suffered by fellow author Gerasimos Grigoris. However while Nikos has his picture on display upstairs in the Lefkádian National Library, Gerasimos does not.
Nikos also wrote for the theatre in addition to being a newspaper columnist for Rizospastis for many years.
When researching these people I often get the feeling that they are scraping the bottom of the barrel for any information on them and that they are not as important as there making out. A sense of let’s show the world our history but only the good parts.
Other series of mine include Greek Poets, Painters, Art, Authors, Musicians, Museums, Specialist fields of interest, Conversation, Famous Greeks, Greek islands, and Rural Villages in Lefkás. All the links can be found here Series links.
Is there groups of artisans in your country who were considered counter revolutionary with their ideas?