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Greece - Expo Brussels 1935

Greece at the Exhibition Expo Brussels 1935
© E. Sergysels
Architect(s) : Henri Lacoste

Greece was keen to show its sympathy for Belgium by officially participating in the Exhibition. It thus recalled its high traditions of art, while at the same time making better known to us the many branches of its present-day economic activity.

The organisation of the Section was entrusted to Mr. Charles Grégoire, Consul General in Brussels, Commissioner General of the Hellenic Government at the Exhibition. Mr. Hector Tchironikos, Commercial Counsellor at the Legation, acted as Deputy Commissioner General, and Mr. Léon Solvyns and Mr. Paul Joins as Consulting Engineer and Deputy Secretary respectively.

The Hellenic Republic Pavilion was located near the entrance known as Les Coudriers, on the edge of the avenue of that name and not far from the British section.

A large white obelisk carried the national flag and the golden Victory of Delos with outstretched wings at a height of 30 metres. Around the gnarled trunk of a giant willow tree hung a trellis.

In front of the pavilion, an Ionic colonnade, discovered in Delos, housed a fresco, evoking an antiquity still young: the Games of the Woman and the Child.

The plan of the Hellenic Pavilion was drawn up by the architect Henry Lacoste, who made the most of the tree-lined site he had been assigned. Built in the form of a rustic temple, painted in bright colours, the pavilion stood out against a green background. A hemicycle bench stood not far from the entrance: it bore the inscription: "To the Muses and the Graces belong this sacred wood with its cool shadows". And two stanzas from the Ode to Victory, by the modern poet Kostis Polames, illustrated the outer courts.

Inside, the Hellenic trade exhibited its marbles, ores, earthenware and pottery, silks, carpets, tobacco, wines, fruits and needlework.

The Exhibition Hall also included an office where one could obtain all useful information about Greece, including information from the Tourist Office.

In the stands, decorated with large photographs showing famous sites, the products of the industries we have mentioned were accompanied by dolls wearing picturesque regional costumes; a special representation was reserved for Byzantine Studies, which is very much in vogue in Belgium, for the review "Byzantium" as well as for the publications of Belgian Hellenists. The spiritual forces, which Greece has always worshipped, were thus honoured at the same time as the material values of this very ancient country, which is in the process of modernising.

© Le Livre d'Or de l'Exposition Universelle de Bruxelles 1935