On 24 October, at 20.00, it is the opening of the temporary exhibition “Greek Paper Icons, Communication Road between Greece and Russia”. The exhibition is the product of cooperation between the Museum of Byzantine Culture and the State Museum of the History of Religion in St. Petersburg. It is part of the cultural events of 2016, Year of Greece in Russia and of Russia in Greece and it is supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation and the Ministry of Culture and Sports of the Greek Republic. The “dialogue” of the collections of the two museums is a special feature of the exhibition, which highlights the common cultural tradition. The exhibition was presented in St. Petersburg (State Museum of the History of Religion), 21/6-26/7.
The exhibition in the Museum of Byzantine Culture consists of an equal number of works from the collections of engravings of both Museums (71 in total), showing a representative image of the Orthodox engravings, 17th-20th c., and trying to highlight the common cultural heritage of the two Orthodox people. These artefacts, which do not belong to the permanent exhibitions of the two museums, are displayed for the first time in Russia and Greece respectively. Their majority comes from the Holy Mountain of Athos, production centre of Orthodox engravings, which reached its peak in the 19th century.
Almost all of the exhibits of the Museum of Byzantine Culture [32 engravings and lithographs, printed on paper and fabric, as well as 5 molds (from copper, wood or metal)] come from the Collection of engravings of the great donor Dori Papastratou. This is a unique, internationally, collection with great scientific and artistic interest.
In the exhibition gallery a video is displayed on the manufacturing process of a mold (intaglio plate) with the depicted subject of an original engraving-exhibit. From this mold, in a specially designed space – “laboratory” an engraving will be produced, on specific days and hours, by the student of the Department of Fine and Applied Arts of the School of Fine Arts of the Aristotle University, Mrs. Helen Photopoulou, under the supervision of the Professor of the Department Mr. Manolis Yannadakis.
The exhibition aims not only to give a complete picture of the art and technique of Orthodox engravings, but also to demonstrate the common cultural heritage of the two nations, which share the same faith, and, of course, to present the ties between Russia and Greece that lasted for over a thousand years. In this context, the Museum of Byzantine Culture organizes engraving workshops for students, and an international conference, titled “The Art of Engraving through the Collections of Religious Engravings of the Museum of Byzantine Culture and the State Museum of the History of Religion (St. Petersburg). Tradition and Renewal” (25/10, 19.00, auditorium “Stephanos Dragoumis”).