FX Excursions

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Athens’ National Museum of Contemporary Art Opens What if Women Ruled the World? Exhibition

by Ron Bernthal

Mar 28, 2024

© Stephie Grape EMST

Daily

National Museum of Contemporary Art Athens was founded in 1997 and is supervised and subsidized by the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports. The museum began its operation in 2000, when it acquired the first artwork of its collection and the first temporary exhibition took place.

In February 2020, after moving to a new location and upgrading various spaces, including the Media Lounge, Conservation Laboratory, Library, Art Archive and Screening Room, EMST opened fully to the public.

Running until the end of October 2024, EMST presents a three-part cycle of exhibitions exclusively dedicated to the work of women artists or artists who identify as women under the umbrella title of What if Women Ruled the World?

Athens

THE LITTLE GIRL © Ghada Amer

Undertaking a re-hanging of an entire floor, the entire museum will gradually be taken over by women artists. Women artists are still underrepresented in most aspects of the art world, but this project, developed by the museum’s artistic director, Katerina Gregos, is reimagining what a museum would look like if, instead of a few token pieces, works by women artists were the majority.

“Especially in a country like Greece, where there was never a prominent organized feminist movement in the visual arts and women artists were systematically marginalized over decades, this is both an important statement and a redressing of a major imbalance,” said Gregos. “At a time when we are witnessing a resurgence of attacks on women’s rights, the question of female empowerment and gender equality, across the board, is more urgent than ever.”

Part I of What If Women Ruled the World? is named WOMEN, together and includes the first comprehensive presentation of a number of works from the D.Daskalopoulos Collection Gift to EΜST; Chryssa Romanos: The Search for Happiness for as Many as Possible; DANAI ANESIADOU: D POSSESSIONS; and Time in my hands. It also included Leda Papaconstantinou, A Retrospective, as well as a series of performances by Alexis Blake.

art

WOMEN, Together © Paris Tavitian

Visitors to the museum will be confronted by the question, What if Women Ruled the World? by way of Yael Bartana’s iconic neon work of the same title. The two installations, one in Greek and the other in English, each 30 feet in height, will be presented on the north and south exterior façades of the museum, interrogating passersby along one of Athens’ main thoroughfares, Syngrou Avenue.

Part II of What If Women Ruled the World? opened March 9 with solo exhibitions of work by Lola Flash, Bouchra Khalili, Tala Madani and Malvina Panagiotidi, as well as special projects by Yael Bartana, Claudia Comte and Hadassah Emmerich.

Part III will inaugurate three further solo exhibitions of work by Bertille Bak, Penny Siopis and Eva Stefani until the end of October.

Athens

WOMEN, Together © Paris Tavitian

General admission is €8 (about $8.62), or €4 (about $4.30) for ages 13–18, university students; groups of 10 or more people or visitors 65 years and over.

 

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