Thematic exhibition

The world of archaeological digs

100 years of archaeological excavations in Greece in photographs
View of the excavation,  Άγνωστος δημιουργός, CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 GR
The Archaeological Society at Athens

The path of applied archeological photography intersperses documentation and creativity. Each type of photographic archaeological documentation requires specialized photography, equipment and a different approach, depending on the specific needs of archaeological research. Photographers and archaeologists work together and archaeologists often take the pictures themselves. In this thematic exhibition you explore photographs from 100 years of archaeological digs in Greece.

Legendary figures of the 20th century, archaeologists, Greeks and foreigners, who brought to light famous ancient places pose in the black and white photographs of the exhibition. Smiling in the ditches, cleaning shells, recording and sorting the findings, workers, archaeologists, photographers, the entire excavation team of Greek and foreign archeological schools, take part in the narrative context of a systematic archaeological dig.

But also the photographs and aerial photographs of the archeological sites, deserted, without any human presence, invite us to a sensory investigation of the material cultures of the past. Sites that archaeologists nostalgically photographed in the first half of the 20th century, when Greece was still a poor, largely rural country, though constantly unearthing testimonies of a rich past, "the anatomy of a wasted power," as the poet Seferis describes in his poem "Engomi".