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Nelly’s Retrospective Exhibition on View thru July 23 at Benaki Museum / Pireos 138

ATHENS – The year 2023 marks the 25th anniversary since the death of photographer Elly Sougioultzoglou-Seraidari (1899-1998), better known as Nelly’s. With a profound sense of responsibility towards her legacy, the Benaki Museum, to which she entrusted her valuable oeuvre in 1984, pays tribute to her with ‘NELLY’S’ a retrospective exhibition which reintroduces the artist to today’s public. The exhibition takes place at the Benaki Museum / Pireos 138 until July 23.

The exhibition was inaugurated by President of the Hellenic Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou.

Nelly’s diverse work is arranged in three chapters corresponding to the three cities in which she shaped her photographic perspective: from her student years in Dresden in the early ’20s to her arrival in Athens, where she cut a dynamic figure within the city’s photographic world, and on to New York, where, in 1966, she finally retired after 27 years of tireless work in the U.S.

The arrangement of her photographic work into groups illustrates the vast array of themes that triggered her lens during the 45 years of her professional involvement with the medium. Well-known photographs from her numerous publications are complemented by new and heretofore unseen works, in an attempt to highlight the diverse aesthetic trends that she followed, as well as the many techniques with which she experimented, both in black and white and color.

A photo by Elly Sougioultzoglou-Seraidari (Nelly’s), members of the Oceanides chorus posing at the ancient theatre of Delphi, 1927. Photo: © Benaki Museum / Photographic Archives

Nelly’s bequeathed Greek photography with a large and diverse body of work which combines boldness, a keen eye for detail, technical mastery, photographic astuteness, and aesthetic certainty in perfect proportion.

This retrospective presentation of the oeuvre of Elly Sougioultzoglou-Seraidari (Nelly’s) was realized thanks to the generous contribution of Aris Theodoridis, unfailingly an ardent supporter of the Museum’s efforts, and to the support of the John S. Fafalios Foundation, Andreas and Alexandra Voureka-Petala, Alexandros Malaspinas and his family, Maria Embeirikou, the Friends of the Benaki Museum Association, the G & A Mamidakis Foundation, Blue gr Hotels & Resorts, Dimitris Tsitouras, and the Museum’s regular partners.

The accompanying publication would not have been possible without the financial support of the George & Victoria Karelia Foundation, to which the Museum extends its deepest gratitude.

The exhibition curator is Aliki Tsirgialou. Exhibition design is by Natalia Boura, Architect and Head of the Modern Greek Architecture Archives at the Benaki Museum.

The retrospective exhibition of Elly Sougioultzoglou-Seraidari’s photographic work coincides with the 55th anniversary of the Benaki Museum Photographic Archives and is dedicated to the Department’s founder, Aimilia Geroulanou, and to the late Angelos Delivorrias, long-standing director of the Benaki Museum.

The Nelly’s retrospective exhibition is on view at the Benaki Museum / Pireos 138 through July 23. Photo: © Menelaos Myrillas / Benaki Museum

The Benaki Museum / Pireos 138 is located at Pireos 138 and Andronikou Street in Athens.

Hours: Thursday and Sunday 10 AM-6 PM, Friday and Saturday: 10 AM-10 PM, closed Monday-Wednesday.

Exhibition admission: € 12, Reduced: € 9.

More information is available by phone: +30 210 3453111 and online: https://www.benaki.org/.



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