Patterns of Magnificence

30 Oct 2014 — 19 Apr 2015 at the Leventis Museum in Nicosia, Cyprus

4 NOVEMBER 2014
Costumes of Sifnos (detail), Cyclades, 18th century. Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation, Nafplion
Costumes of Sifnos (detail), Cyclades, 18th century. Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation, Nafplion

The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia in collaboration with the Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation (PFF) present the exhibition “Patterns of magnificence: Tradition and reinvention in Greek women’s costume”.

The exhibition is an initiative for the 40th birthday of PFF and is dedicated to the memory of Koula Lemos, honorary member of the Greek Community of London. The exhibition has been presented at the Hellenic Centre in London, the "Hellenic Cosmos", Athens and now, its final destination, the Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia, where it will remain from the 30th of October 2014 to the 19th of April 2014.

Forty of the most unique, 18th to 20th Greek garments, with Cypriot garments among them, highlight aspects of the social and economic life while touching upon the general historic framework of these periods.

Introduction to the exhibition are Two types of garment form the starting point: the dress from Kassos and Karpathos, a three metre long dress with a fold which recalls the kolpos of the Ionic chiton and the loose pleated dress of Crete while epilogue of the exhibition are two garments, example of Court Dresses, introduced by Queen Amalia in 1837 and that subsequently created by Queen Olga in 1867 influenced both urban and rural costumes in Greece and Cyprus.

The Curator of the exhibition Mrs. Ioanna Papantoniou, Founder and President of the Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation, denotes that in the development of women’s local costume around the eighteenth century one can discern survivals of garment forms from a period for which we have very little relevant information. These forms constituted the basis of what was to follow in the middle of the nineteenth century when with the Romantic Movement local costume came to assume a fixed appearance in Greece, Western Europe and elsewhere.