THE PRAISE OF THE OLIVE
Design for a mobile exhibition, which presents the olive tree in Greece through art, archaeology, tradition, religion and food.
Agency: Academy of Athens (Κ.Ε.Ε.Λ.)
Photography: Nicoletta Menti
The olive tree is a symbol of civilisation throughout the Mediterranean and particularly in Greece. The six chapters of the exhibition, each with multiple exhibits, depict the many-faceted identity of the olive tree and are were put together in such a way as to cultivate an aesthetically unified staging.
The spare setting of the exhibition was appropriate for the exceptional architecture of the Academy of Athens library.The entrance corridor provides an introduction to the topic of the olive tree. Different varietals of olive trees from all of Greece, along with their names lead visitors into the main exhibition area.The main hall has panels along its circumference that cover two of its sides up to 3.00 m of height. The panels are printed with information and images and are interrupted by display cases.
The topics dealt with within the central area are history, mythology, religion, symbolism, landscape and contemporary expressions of the olive tree.On display there are fossilised olive leaves and fruit from the Minoan palace at Zakros, lamps and candles that coexist with works of art both old and new, even contemporary jewellery.On the higher levels on either side of the hall there are topics to do with sports – with exhibits such as strigils (implements for scraping oil and sweat off athletes), olive wreaths for victors, the logo and torch for the Olympic Games; and also with health and nutrition, displaying products, recipes and folk remedies concerning the olive tree and its fruit.