National Archaeological Museum

National Archaeological Museum, photo: Mathias Völzke

Originally designed in 1866 to host finds from nineteenth-century archaeological excavations, the museum’s collections—the most extensive in Greece—date from the sixth millennium BC to late antiquity. The building’s neoclassical façade was designed by Ernst Ziller, a significant architect of imperial buildings under King George I. In the 1940s, when Nazi troops invaded Athens, archaeologists here (in a gesture similar to that of colleagues around the world) chose to protect ancient objects by reburying them. It is this act that Daniel Knorr references in his (unrealized) proposal to bury the sculpture Boy with a Dog from the collection of the National Archaeological Museum for the duration of the exhibition. His second proposal involves setting up a hydraulic press to print an edition of an artist’s book, each including objects found on the streets of Athens pressed between the pages—an archaeology of today, preserved for the future.

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