Greek Australian artist Angela Kiki Konstantinopoulou launched her latest exhibition ‘Ode to Freedom’ on Monday March 20 at the Camden Civic Centre in NSW.
The exhibition, opened by the Greek Consul General in Sydney, Yannis Mallikourtis, featured speeches by Dr Vassilis Adrahtas from Western Sydney University, writer Eleni Eleftherias and lawyer and writer Mr Constantinos Vertzayias.
Born in Achaia, Greece; Konstantinopoulou’s parents migrated to Sydney in 1960 when she was just two years old.
Having originally studied fashion design in order to work in the family business, the world of art had always drawn the creative.
‘Ode to Freedom’ showcases a number of original paintings intended to inspire learning about Hellenic history and heritage.
It pays particular homage to the strong connection Hellenism shares with NSW’s Macarthur region, where Greeks first appeared on the continent according to official records; a group of seven sailors convicted of piracy and sent to the then colony to serve out their detention.
‘Ode to Freedom’ pays respect to the contribution of the Anzacs, and their fight against the Nazi invasion of Greece and talks of the bonds between Australia and Greece.
“It is a journey to the past, where history teaches of sacrifice, determination, defeat, bloodshed, bravery and hope,” writes the artist.
“Freedom is not granted. The legacy of heroes, Hellene, Australian, New Zealander freedom-fighters, continues to be commemorated.”
Present at the event were a number of prominent figures, including president of AHEPA NSW Bill Skandalakis alongside president of the Hellenic Lyceum Sydney Liana Vertzayias and president of the Macquarie University Greek Studies Foundation Theo Premetis.
Attendees heard a rendition of the Greek National Anthem on the bagpipes performed by John Coombes, who also regaled the audience with his harp.
Konstantinopoulou’s exhibition will remain on show at the Camden Civic Centre until 25 March.