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Culture

Robert McCabe Exhibition, Greece: An Enchanted Land, Runs through July 7

NEW YORK – The Consulate of Greece in New York and Consul General Konstantinos Koutras present Greece: An Enchanted Land, an exhibition of the iconic images of Greece captured in the 1950s by internationally acclaimed photographer Robert McCabe, now on view at the Consulate, 69 East 79th Street, through July 7. The exhibition opening took place on June 7 with community members and the media in attendance.

McCabe’s work has become an important reference to Greece’s history and landscapes. His presence in Greece as a photographer during 1950s has played an integral role in archiving photos of Greece as they have never been seen before.

His books on Mykonos, Santorini, Mycenae, and recent publication on Kasos, are just a few of his magnificent photographs of a bygone era in Greece. His lens captured the country before it developed into the international tourist destination it is today.

Consul General of Greece in New York Konstantinos Koutras at the opening of Greece: An Enchanted Land, the exhibition with photos by Robert McCabe. Photo by Eleni Sakellis

McCabe’s love affair with Greece continued after marrying Dina, a wonderful Greek woman, and raising a family in Athens and America, making Greece his second home.

Greece and its people are indebted to his photography, which has preserved images of Greece in various time frames for the ages to come.

Consul General Koutras spoke with The National Herald about the exhibition at the opening: “It is a very important exhibition of a very important artist and photographer, who has dedicated his life to projecting Greece through his photographic lenses. Robert McCabe chose, together with Ms. Darilis, photographs from the ’50s, which, literally, have frozen time. He was granted Greek citizenship in 2020 thanks to his contribution to the preservation of the country’s cultural heritage, while his works have been exhibited all over the world.”

The exhibit was curated by longtime McCabe fan, television personality, producer, and director Yanna Darilis who shared her deep appreciation for the photographer and his work in her remarks during the exhibition opening.

Yanna Darilis and Consul General of Greece in New York Konstantinos Koutras at the opening of Greece: An Enchanted Land, the exhibition with photos by Robert McCabe. Photo by Eleni Sakellis

“The work of Robert McCabe is a timeless exhibition of the authenticity of Greece. It is very important that the exhibition takes place in New York because he also lives in New York for many years. He was married to a very beautiful Greek woman and eventually made Greece his second home. Robert managed to capture photos that we will not see again in Greece. So we are grateful for the fact that he recorded Greece with his lens as it was, before it became the tourist destination that it is today,” said Darili.

In a videotaped message, McCabe thanked Koutras and praised his work at the Greek Consulate General in New York, while he also pointed out that the photos presented in the exhibition reflect a distant past. “Yanna Darilis chose some of my very favorite photos, most of which cannot be duplicated today… Like, for example, the woman rescuing her husband from the car – there was no traffic light in Athens at the time,” McCabe said.

It should be noted that, this is the last exhibition hosted at the Consulate General during the term of Dr. Konstantinos Koutras, who will complete his tenure in New York in August. During his time as Consul General, Koutras, along with his colleague Cultural Attache and Public Relations Officer Evelyn Kanellea, opened the Consulate General doors even wider to young artists and to those more well-established, and the cultural activity continued after COVID.

“Robert McCabe and his wife Dina, who unfortunately is no longer with us, were among the first people my wife and I met when we came to New York… So we decided it’s the last show of my tenure, to close, that is, with the exhibition of Robert McCabe, a world-famous photographer, philhellene, but also a great Greek,” concluded Koutras.

Greece: An Enchanted Land, an exhibition of the iconic images of Greece captured in the 1950s by internationally acclaimed photographer Robert McCabe, is on view through July 7. Photo by Eleni Sakellis

Peter McCabe, the photographer’s younger brother, was then called to the podium to say a few words about his brother and the exhibition, noting that there were four brothers in the family and the oldest accompanied Robert on that fateful trip in 1954 since he was only seven years old at the time. He thanked the exhibition organizers, Koutras and Darilis, and shared some family stories, highlighting how his brother’s photography career began.

Koutras also announced that while the exhibition runs through July 7, weekdays, 9 AM-2:30 PM, the exhibition works were donated by Robert McCabe to the Consulate General where they will remain as a permanent exhibition on the 5th floor.

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