Greece Upset by London Fashion Week Show held at British Museum

25 days ago
Greece Upset by London Fashion Week Show held at British Museum


Designer Erdem Moralioglu chose the impressive setting of the Athens Parthenon sculptures showroom at the British Museum to present the autumn winter 2024 collection of his eponymous brand Erdem, inspired by Greek singer Maria Callas and her interpretation of the opera Medea in 1953.

The sculptures were taken from the Parthenon temple at the Acropolis in Greece in the early 19th century by British diplomat Thomas Bruce, the earl of Elgin.

Greek Minister of Culture, Lina Mendoni, voiced her frustration over the weekend following a London Fashion Week event held in front of the Parthenon Marbles at the British Museum.

In a recent statement, Mendoni criticized the British Museum for organizing a fashion show in the halls where the Parthenon Sculptures are exhibited, suggesting that the event demonstrates a lack of respect for the masterpieces of Pheidias.

“It’s a situation that cannot be ignored – the directors of the British Museum are not just neglecting the significance of the monument but also undermining the universal values it represents. The sculptures, housed in the Duveen Gallery, are suffering due to poor display and storage conditions that worsen by the day. It’s high time for these stolen and mistreated sculptural treasures to be showcased in the brilliance of the Attic light,” she emphasized.

Athens maintains the marbles, which are a major draw for visitors at London’s British Museum, were stolen, while the UK claims they were obtained legally.

The 1963 British Museum Act prohibits the removal of objects from the institution’s collection.

But officials at the museum, which is under pressure to repatriate other foreign antiquities, have not ruled out a possible loan deal.

Late November, a diplomatic spat raised eyebrows when Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expressed his “displeasure” over UK counterpart Rishi Sunak’s last minute cancellation of a bilateral meeting set to discuss their long-running dispute over the Parthenon Marbles.

At issue for London was the Greek leader’s comments in a BBC interview a day before the meeting about ownership of the 2,500-year-old marbles.

Sunak was allegedly angry about Mitsotakis’s comments that having some of the marbles in London and others in Athens was like cutting the Mona Lisa in half.