The opening of the temporary exhibitionn From Asia Minor to Cyprus: Heyday – Catastrophe – Displacement – Rebirth took place on Friday 17 November 2023 at the A.G. Leventis Gallery, in the presence of distinguished guests

The opening ceremony was presided over by the President of the Republic Mr. Nikos Christodoulides. Among other things, he said in his address: “The memory that is not lost embroiders the future. The memory that is not forgotten is not lost, but is strengthened. In difficult times, each of us finds the courage to continue, looking optimistically into the future – but always keeping the testimony of yesterday as a valuable legacy.”

Also, the President of the Foundation A. G. Leventis, Mr. Anastasios P. Leventis, the President of the Centre for Asia Minor Studies, Mr. George A. David, the President of the Benaki Museum, Mrs. Irini Geroulanou, and the Director of the Foundation Anastasios G. Leventis. and the Leventis Gallery Mrs. Lucia Loizou Hadjigavriel addressed the audience.

Finally, the curator of the exhibition, Mrs Evita Arapoglou, spoke about the preparation, the content and the importance of the exhibition.

The opening ceremony was attended by the Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Mrs Stella Kyriakidou, ambassadors, representatives of ministries, the Commissioners of the A.G. Leventis Foundation, Mrs Fotini Papadopoulou and Mrs Edmée Leventis, the President of the Bank of Cyprus Mr Takis Arapoglou, the Scientific Director of the Benaki Museum Mr George Manginis, the Professor of the University of Cyprus Mr Petros Papapolyviou, lenders of documents for the exhibition and a large number of people.

The curator of the exhibition Mrs. Evita Arapoglou guides the President of the Republic of Cyprus Mr. Nikos Christodoulides

About the Exhibition:

After the success of the monumental centenary exhibition Asia Minor Hellenism: Heyday – Catastrophe – Displacement – Rebirth, co-organised by the Benaki Museum and the Centre for Asia Minor Studies in Athens (Benaki Museum / Pireos 138), the A. G. Leventis Gallery is co-organising and hosting part of this exhibition in Cyprus, which highlights the culture and unfolds the chronicle of Hellenism in Asia Minor. The exhibition is enriched with heirlooms and testimonies from the refugees who settled and started a new life in Cyprus.

More than 500 exhibits and photographs will shed light on the heyday of Hellenism before the persecutions and the dramatic period from 1919 to 1923, as well as the settlement and integration of refugees in Cyprus.

The visitor begins the journey to the splendour of Hellenism in Asia Minor (first part) from Ionia and the western coastline, proceeds to Cappadocia and the southern provinces, continues by crossing Pontos to return westwards, around Constantinople, ending up in Eastern Thrace.

The era of prosperity is followed by the period of persecutions, the end of World War I and the treaties, the period of the Greek landing in Smyrna and the Asia Minor Campaign, the Catastrophe of 1922 and the Exodus of the refugees (second part).

The third and final part of the exhibition focusses on the settlement and integration of emigrants in Cyprus.

This chronicle is described through images, ecclesiastical, military and personal items, clothing, jewellery, handicrafts, maps, photographs, archival and film material, newspapers, letters, cards and many other documents. The narrative is complemented by excerpts from personal testimonies and memories, bringing the images and ‘silent’ objects to life.

The exhibition is curated byι:

  • Evita Arapoglou, Curator of the Greek Collection of the A. G. Leventis Gallery.
  • Despina Christofidou, Assistant Curator of the A. G. Leventis Gallery.

The exhibition is hosted in the Temporary Exhibition Hall on the ground floor of the Leventis Gallery.

Exhibition Duration: 18 November 2023 – 3 March 2024

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