"Only in Athens" is a great initiative for a new line of souvenirs for the tourists lining up to see the Acropolis and have a bite at a tavern in Plaka or Thisio. You can see the sample souvenirs from the exhibition at Matalou at home, an exhibition space in the center of the city till the 5th of April.
Why will I recommend it to all my friends visiting Athens? Because it does capture the other true Athens that you will never see in you only restrain yourself to the tourist areas, it reveals the features of Athens you notice and fall in love with only after you’ve been here for a certain amount of time and can’t live without, features that you will never find in the souvenir shops in Plaka crowded with all those magnets portraying the Acropolis and the heads of the Greek gods-no offence to the traditional souvenirs, of course. And they are more practical and more interesting than those awful t-shirts in the traditional souvenir shops with the pirate kid “Born to be wild” or whatever, they have been hanging in the windows for over 20 years now.
Really if there are some images that I always relate in my head to Athens are the oddly shaped buildings and I do constantly wonder why do they make the top of the buildings-polykatoikias in that oddly stair-case shape- is it to get more sun or something? Really, I am so fascinated with it that I have taken countess photos from buildings’ rooftops and continue to focus on them whenever I take a photo of a graffiti or a mural. And how about that idea that underneath the so famous and chaotic polykatoikia lies some cultural treasure. And where else in the world would they write on ancient buildings like they constantly do on Panepistimou or hang huge protest signs over the Parthenon? If you walk around Athens enough you will fall in love with the random plants in pots you will encounter on the most secluded alleys. And don’t get me started on Lycabettus hill, the place that helps you run away from everyone, even yourself and enjoy nature just a few meters from the hectic center of the city. All of the paradoxes of this city are captured, like the one where stray dogs and cats rest on ancient ruins that are covered with “Do not touch the marbles” signs or wander round archaeological sites that are strictly off limits to the curious tourists :)
And this phrase “Only in Athens”….People have been using this catchphrase “Only in Greece” so often these past years during the boom of the financial crisis to explain the paradoxes happening everyday in daily life in Greece.
The logo is flawless and is already hung in my kitchen.. Game, set and match to this campaign. The only thing that slightly bothers me, and not that anyone is listening, but I would have just invested a wee bit more in the t-shirt design rather that just print the simple, yet so true of Athens, photos.
(The last three photos are from items from a previous exhibition, but still sold as alternative souvenirs. I love the bag with the soldier’s boot and the Tsoliades-Evzones, well the Presidential guards, shaped coasters.)