[MGSA-L] Images of the Greek Resistance
june.samaras at gmail.com
Wed Feb 9 19:28:23 PST 2011
Images of the Greek Resistance
4 Feb 2011
An exhibition of period photographs of the Greek Resistance by leading
post-war photographer Kostas Balafas opens on February 11 at the
Benaki Museum's Piraeus Street Annex in central Athens.
For the first time, such a breadth of items -- 60 photographs of a
total 2,000 negatives -- will be on display from the life-long work of
today's 90-year-old Balafas, which the photographer recently donated
to the Benaki Museum.
Kostas Balafas is one of the leading Greek exponents of humanist
photography in the post-war period. The part of his oeuvre dedicated
to ordinary working-class people and, particularly, to the inhabitants
of isolated villages in Epirus, has been repeatedly publicised over
the past 20 years through exhibitions and publications.
As he personally enlisted in the 85th Regiment of ELAS (Greek Popular
Liberation Army) in 1945, he recorded on camera the struggle of the
people of Epirus against the invaders, well aware that he was
recording historical moments for future generations. Using film stock
that fell from the sky - literally, as it fell off an Italian bomber -
he recorded villages destroyed, the plotting involved in the start of
an armed struggle, the marches and battles of the resistance fighters,
mourning mothers, as well as celebrations on the liberation of
All this material remained hidden for 31 years under the wooden floor
of a house in Ioannina. In 1991, the photographer himself edited and
paid for the publication of the book Kostas Balafas. Antartiko -
Guerrilla Warfare in Epirus, Black-and-white photographs 1940-1944.
The exhibition presents the photographic series depicting Resistance
in Epirus, which is held at the Benaki Museum, along with the rest of
To mark the exhibition, on February 27, 2011, there will be a one-day
conference on: Photography during the Resistance years. Greece,
The exhibition will run through April 30.
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