Schubert, Stories and Workshops in National Archaeological Museum’s Christmas Program

During the day the plaza of the National Archaeological Museum of Athens is filled with tourists, but some migrants enjoy shade from the sun beneath trees. (Photo by TNH)

ATHENS – The National Archaeological Museum in Athens is planning to welcome visitors with a series of events of cultural and archaeological interest during the Christmas and New Year holidays.

The series of events includes the annual Christmas concert at noon on Sunday, December 23, featuring vocalists, piano, guitar and violin playing songs and sonatas by Schubert.

The Unseen Museum, which brings up and displays antiquities normally held in the museum’s storerooms, will introduce finds from a little-known German excavation of a neolithic settlement in Thessaly carried out in 1941, complete with a narration that “reconstructs” the neolithic way of life, the families, the homes and the domesticated animals that for the first time fed at their mangers, to begin on Sunday, December 23 at 13:00.

Other activities include workshops for children linked to the museum’s temporary exhibition “The Countless Aspects of Beauty”, where children will have the opportunity to learn beauty secrets of earlier times. By observing the artefacts they will collect evidence of how beauty was perceived by ancient societies and discover the ancient myths depicted on ancient pottery, after which they will make their own artwork. The educational programmes will be held on Thursday, December 27 for children aged six to eight, from 11:00 to 12:30, and on Friday, December 28 for children aged nine to 12 years old at 11:00.

Those wishing to participate must contact the museum at the telephone number 2132144800 (from December 18) and book a place in advance.

On Tuesday, December 18 and Thursday, December 27 at 12:00 and on Wednesday January 2, at the same time, the museum’s archaeologists will present the secrets of the ancient white-ground lekythoi and why they constitute a source of inspiration for artists through the ages. On December 18, professor of the History of Art at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens Dimitris Pavlopoulos will give participants a tour of the exhibition “Ten White-ground Lekythoi of the Museum of Athens” and will discuss the ways that modern engravers approached the spirit of the ancient ceramic painters to create the iconic white coloured background.

The last event is at noon on January 4, with a narration by Niki Kapari accompanied by musician Giannis Psimadas presenting myths about the goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite, and the importance of the search for beauty to the ancients. Entrance for under-18s free of charge.