Publications

2022
Form Follows Function. Decorative and Applied Arts 1621-2021. (Lalaounis I, Plantzos D). Athens: Ilias Lalaounis Jewelry Museum; 2022. Publisher's Version
The Story of Lemnos. Myth - History - Heritage. Athens: Kapon Editions; 2022. Publisher's VersionAbstract
Dedicated to the historical and cultural heritage of Lemnos, the book offers a new, valid, concise and accessible history of this unique Greek island in the Northeast Aegean. Based on historical and mythological sources, archaeological finds, important remains of ancient Greek, medieval and modern art, narratives and chronicles, engravings, drawings, photographs and other archival material, the author sketches in 250 pages and with the help of about 200 images, the history of Lemnos from the depths of the Aegean prehistory to the present day. In its pages, readers will find important information about the society, the economy, the political life, the art and the intellectual creation of the island over time, from the first nomadic settlements during the late Paleolithic period (ca. 10,500 BC), until today: with extensive accounts of the prehistoric cities of Poliochni and Myrina, the important site of Koukonisi, Hephaestia and Kaveirion during the Archaic and Classical period (7th-4th century BC), Lemnos of the Hellenistic and Roman years, Lemnos as a Byzantine, Venetian, and Ottoman possession, but also the adventures of the island and its inhabitants from the liberation of 1912-13 onwards.
Το Χρονικό της Λήμνου. Μύθος - Ιστορία - Κληρονομιά. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Καπόν; 2022. Publisher's VersionAbstract
Αφιερωμένο στην ιστορική και πολιτιστική κληρονομιά της Λήμνου, το βιβλίο προσφέρει μια νέα, έγκυρη, ευσύνοπτη και προσιτή στον αναγνώστη ιστορία του μοναδικού αυτού ελληνικού νησιού στο Βορειοανατολικό Αιγαίο. Με βάση ιστορικές και μυθογραφικές πηγές, αρχαιολογικά ευρήματα, σημαντικά κατάλοιπα της αρχαίας ελληνικής, μεσαιωνικής, και νεότερης τέχνης, διηγήσεις και χρονικά, γκραβούρες, σχέδια, φωτογραφίες και άλλο αρχειακό υλικό, ο συγγραφέας σκιαγραφεί σε 250 σελίδες και με τη βοήθεια 200 περίπου εικόνων, την ιστορία της Λήμνου από τα βάθη της αιγιακής προϊστορίας έως τις μέρες μας. Στο Χρονικό της Λήμνου, η μακραίωνη ιστορία ενός σχετικά άγνωστου και κάπως αγνοημένου μέχρι πρόσφατα νησιού του Αιγαίου μετατρέπεται σε συναρπαστικό αφήγημα, ένα πραγματικό χρονικό για τον τόπο και τους ανθρώπους του. Στις σελίδες του, οι αναγνώστες θα βρουν σημαντικές πληροφορίες για την κοινωνία, την οικονομία, την πολιτική ζωή, την τέχνη και την πνευματική δημιουργία του νησιού διαχρονικά, από τις πρώτες νομαδικές εγκαταστάσεις κατά την ύστερη Παλαιολιθική περίοδο (περ. 10.500 π.Χ.), μέχρι σήμερα: με εκτενείς αναφορές στις προϊστορικές πόλεις της Πολιόχνης και της Μύρινας, στο σημαντικό Κουκονήσι, την Ηφαιστία και το Καβείριο κατά την Αρχαϊκή και την Κλασική περίοδο (7ος-4ος αι. π.Χ.), τη Λήμνο των ελληνιστικών και ρωμαϊκών χρόνων, τη Λήμνο ως Βυζαντινή, Βενετική, και Οθωμανική κτήση, αλλά και τις περιπέτειες του νησιού και των κατοίκων του από την απελευθέρωση του 1912-13 και μετά. Αναδεικνύεται, τέλος, η Λήμνος του σήμερα: τόποι ιστορικής σημασίας, αρχαιολογικοί χώροι και μουσεία, αλλά και τοποθεσίες φυσικού κάλλους, γεωλογικά μνημεία και θέσεις οικολογικού ενδιαφέροντος, παραλίες και παραδοσιακοί οικισμοί. Ακόμη, γίνονται αναφορές στην άυλη και την γαστρονομική κληρονομιά του νησιού, αλλά και τη μουσική και χορευτική παράδοση που αναβιώνει ώς τις μέρες μας.
2021
Hellas Mon Amour: Revisiting Greece's national sites of trauma. In: E. Solomon (ed.), Contested Antiquity. Archaeological Heritage and Social Conflict in Modern Greece and Cyprus. Bloomington: Indiana University Press; 2021. pp. 73-99. Publisher's VersionAbstract
If “the past is a foreign country”, then Greece’s classical past could be described – and it has been – as an ideal, as well as idyllic land, colonized by the West. This paper employs post-colonial theory combined with discussions of trauma as a historical agent in order to investigate ways in which contemporary Greek museums and archaeological sites strive to attract the colonial gaze by reclaiming ownership of the nation’s (neo)-classical past; at the same time, however, this exercise may be seen as an effort to alleviate the pains of modernity as experienced by a people who has never overcome the trauma of its separation from its famed antiquity. As a result, Greek archaeological spaces – both museums and sites – can be described as “sites of trauma”, as the placescapes where the unlived experiences of an imagined past become revived. A number of examples are discussed, including the Benaki and Acropolis Museums, as well as several clusters of antiquities preserved “in situ”, mostly within the urban grid or incorporated in buildings and other structures, such as Athenian metro stations. Such cases of incidental archaeology, the paper contends, are devised in order to suture, in the psychoanalytical sense of the term, Greek national imaginary onto the very sites where the nation experienced the trauma of its separation from its past.
Jugate images in Ptolemaic and Julio-Claudian Monarchy. In: Carney ED, Müller S The Routledge Companion to Women and Monarchy in the Ancient Mediterranean World. Oxford and New York: Routledge; 2021. pp. 359-371.
2020
Bodies in the city: Athenian street art and the biopolitics of the 'Greek crisis'. In: Loukaki A Urban Art and the City Creating, Destroying, and Reclaiming the Sublime. Oxford and New York: Routledge; 2020. pp. 149-165.Abstract
From the onset of the so-called “Greek crisis” (a sovereign-debt default in late 2009 and the subsequent, and ongoing, attempts on behalf of successive Greek governments at securing adequate bailout aid from the EU and the IMF), a new breed of biopolitics seems to have been in place. Classical antiquity has always played a crucial part in the forging of modern Greek social and cultural identities; in the framework of the “Greek crisis”, however, classical heritage and its visual output has been used both as an emancipatory tool against the country’s debtors as well as a disciplinary device on behalf of its critics. In this paper, a number of earlier and more recent Athenian graffiti will be discussed, directly or indirectly incorporating themes from Greek art in order to express their makers’ sentiments – as well as the frustrations of their public at large. Contrasting unauthorized examples of Athenian street art with some centrally-sponsored recent examples also employing classicizing imageries, the paper will explore the ways in which classical heritage finds itself entangled with the neoliberal biopolitics at work in Greece since 2009.
Before mimesis: Reflections on the Early Greek technologies of looking. Athens University Review of Archaeology [Internet]. 2020;3:73-99. Publisher's Version
2019
Athens Remains: A Greek Archaeology of the Present. Journal of Greek Media & Culture [Internet]. 2019;5(2). Publisher's VersionAbstract
A special issue of the Journal of Greek Media and Culture (5.2), edited by Dimitris Plantzos. With a special focus on the city of Athens and its current predicament of austerity, recession and precarity, the issue brings together cultural historians, social anthropologists, urban archaeologists and contemporary artists in order to compose ‘a Greek archaeology of the present’. The new special issue includes articles by Penelope Papailias, Neni Panourgiá, Stelios Lekakis, Charis Kanellopoulou, Faidon Moudopoulos and Dimitris Giannakis; a visual essay by Penelope Petsini; and a viewpoint-piece by novelist Christos Chrissopoulos. This new collection of articles and essays attempts a re-charting of Athens as a city in the process of spatial and social restructuring; as a field of cultural expression, as well as a deeply traumatized, multi-cultural community in awe of its own urbanization. To this end, individual contributions explore the biopolitics of the ‘Greek crisis’; the gentrification of urban space; the commodification of cultural life; the restructuring of public memory; the renegotiation of collective histories within an urban setting.
Greek sculpture in the Roman Empire: the literary sources. In: Palagia O Handbook of Greek Sculpture. Berlin: De Gruyter; 2019. pp. 7-21.
Utopian spatialities: the past as present in the films of Philippos Koutsaftis. Journal of Modern Greek Studies [Internet]. 2019;37(2):327-360. Publisher's Version
We owe ourselves to debt: Classical Greece, Athens in crisis, and the body as battlefield. Social Science Information [Internet]. 2019;58(3):469-492. Publisher's Version
Συζυγικά πορτρέτα στα νομίσματα και τα κοσμήματα της Ελληνιστικής περιόδου. In: Νόμισμα / Κόσμημα. Χρήσεις - Διαδράσεις - Συμβολισμοί από την Αρχαιότητα έως Σήμερα. Αθήνα: Λυδία Λίθος; 2019. pp. 103-112.Abstract
Jugate portraits on coinage and jewellery of the Hellenistic periodJugate representations of divine or royal couples appear often on coins and sealsin Graeco-Roman art. Putting an emphasis on dynastic integrity and continuity –derived from the model of their divine predecessors– the kings of the Hellenisticperiod (and particularly so the Ptolemies of Egypt) are shown next to their consortsas guarantors for the production of lawful heirs. As their divine model –devised,evidently, by themselves in anticipation of the symbolism they wished to put forward–they most commonly used Sarapis and Isis, a couple known to us from coins, sealsand other such portable media, as well as a remote counterpart in the face of Zeusand Dione, a divine couple known from the coins and seals of Epirus.The emblematic value of coins or jewels employed as seals, such as engravedgemstones and signet rings, stresses the symbolism of the jugate scheme, renderingthe image into an agent for Hellenistic kingship ideology. The type’s adoption byRoman Imperial couples strengthened its ideological content and guaranteed itssurvival well into modernity.
2018
Crisis, austerity measures and beyond: archaeology in Greece since the global financial crisis. Archaeological Reports [Internet]. 2018;64:171-180. Publisher's VersionAbstract
This article, covering the roughly decade-long “Greek crisis” (2008-2018), uses official statistics in order to examine the effects the prolonged recession had for archaeology in Greece. As the data show, although revenues from museums and archaeological sites are in considerable rise (a side effect of “crisis tourism” among other factors), state spending on archaeological research is lacking; furthermore, the steady collapse of the state apparatus during this long decade has seriously affected archaeology and the ways it is practiced in the country, ultimately leading to the loss of an entire generation of Greek archaeologists.
The Art of Painting in Ancient Greece. Athens and Atlanta: Kapon Editions and Lockwood Press; 2018. Publisher's VersionAbstract
This innovative, fresh look on Greek painting combines a standard, comprehensive survey of the material record – wall-paintings, painted panels, or slabs – with an in-depth exploration of the ways in which the Greeks themselves appreciated this demanding art. The book dwells on techniques, styles, themes, and masters, as well as their admirers, clients, and critics. At the same time, the author discusses recent breakthroughs in archaeology, cultural studies, and art history in order to offer a well-rounded picture of a unique phenomenon in Greek culture, a celebrated art that enjoyed a long afterlife. In this respect, this book is unique in its kind as it reflects new, multidisciplinary scholarly approaches to the material record which it combines with a more traditional, art-historical exploration. Drawing on a wide range of ancient authorities – from Plato and Xenophon to Cicero, Pliny, Lucian, and Philostratus – the author discusses the surviving works within their chronological framework and under the light of recent discoveries. After a wide-ranging discussion of painting in Bronze-Age Greece (Cyclades, Crete, Santorini, Mycenaean Greece), the book establishes a highly readable narrative of all technical, stylistic, iconographical and aesthetic developments through the Archaic, the Classical, and the Hellenistic period, before it culminates with the study of Graeco-Roman painting in the 2nd-3rd c. AD. The study thus covers all significant milestones in the development of Greek painting from the prehistoric through to the Roman era, as well as most surviving works (including many lesser known or recently discovered ones); it also pays tribute to the oeuvre and individual contributions of most great masters of antiquity. The book’s introduction offers a thorough account of the techniques and materials employed in ancient painting, alongside contemporary technical, scientific, and theoretical approaches to its study. The text is fully illustrated in color, and accompanied by an extensive bibliography and index. The Art of Painting in Ancient Greece is a scholarly monograph that would interest all Greek-art enthusiasts, archaeology and art-history students, as well as any academic working on classical Greece.
Η τέχνη της ζωγραφικής στον αρχαιοελληνικό κόσμο. Αθήνα: Καπόν; 2018. Publisher's VersionAbstract
Το νέο βιβλίο του Δημήτρη Πλάντζου προσφέρει μια εμπεριστατωμένη επισκόπηση της αρχαίας ελληνικής ζωγραφικής μέσα από τα σωζόμενα μνημεία. Παράλληλα, επιχειρεί μια μοναδική στο είδος της διεπιστημονική μελέτη των αρχαιολογικών καταλοίπων μέσα από τις φιλοσοφικές αντιλήψεις και θεωρητικές προσεγγίσεις τόσο της αρχαιότητας όσο και του καιρού μας. Με τη βοήθεια των αρχαίων φιλολογικών πηγών – από τον Πλάτωνα και τον Ξενοφώντα στον Κικέρωνα, τον Πλίνιο, τον Λουκιανό και τον Φιλόστρατο – ο συγγραφέας αναλύει εικονογραφικές και τεχνοτροπικές τάσεις της αρχαίας ζωγραφικής, επανεξετάζοντας παράλληλα και τις απόψεις της σύγχρονης έρευνας. Με συχνές αναφορές στην ιστορία της τέχνης, την ανθρωπολογία, την ψυχανάλυση, και τις πολιτισμικές σπουδές, το βιβλίο προτείνει μια νέα, ρηξικέλευθη ματιά στον κόσμο της αρχαιοελληνικής ζωγραφικής. Μετά από μια συνοπτική αναφορά στην ελλαδική ζωγραφική της Εποχής του Χαλκού (Κυκλάδες, Κρήτη, Θήρα, Μυκηναϊκή Ελλάδα), το βιβλίο καλύπτει τις τεχνικές, τεχνοτροπικές, εικονογραφικές και αισθητικές εξελίξεις κατά την Αρχαϊκή, την Κλασική, και την Ελληνιστική περίοδο, για να ολοκληρωθεί με τη μελέτη της ζωγραφικής του ελληνορωμαϊκού κόσμου, έως τον 2ο-3ο αι. μ.Χ. Καλύπτονται έτσι όχι μόνον οι σημαντικότερες περίοδοι της ελληνικής ζωγραφικής από τους προϊστορικούς έως και τους ρωμαϊκούς χρόνους, αλλά και όλα τα περισσότερο ή και λιγότερο γνωστά έργα, καθώς και το έργο των σημαντικότερων ζωγράφων της αρχαιότητας. Η εισαγωγή της μελέτης παρουσιάζει συνοπτικά τα υλικά και τις μεθόδους της αρχαίας ζωγραφικής, ενώ παράλληλα αναλύει τις σύγχρονες τεχνικές και θεωρητικές ερευνητικές μεθόδους. Το κείμενο συνοδεύεται από εξαντλητική έγχρωμη εικονογράφηση, πλήρη βιβλιογραφία, και ευρετήριο. Η μελέτη Η τέχνη της ζωγραφικής στον αρχαιοελληνικό κόσμο απευθύνεται στους θαυμαστές της αρχαίας ελληνικής τέχνης, στους μελετητές της κλασικής αρχαιότητας, στους φοιτητές αρχαιολογίας και ιστορίας της τέχνης, και σε κάθε αρχαιόφιλο, Έλληνα ή ξένο (καθώς κυκλοφορεί παράλληλα και στην αγγλική γλώσσα).
2017
Amphipolitics: archaeological performance and governmentality in Greece under the crisis. In: Greece in Crisis. The Cultural Politics of Austerity. London: I.B. Tauris; 2017. pp. 65-84.
Caryatids lost and regained: rebranding the classical body in contemporary Greece. Journal of Greek Media & Culture [Internet]. 2017;3(1):3-29. Publisher's VersionAbstract
This article examines patterns of reception through which a particular type of classical sculpture – the Caryatid – has been accepted into the cultural life of contemporary Greece. Loved by neoclassical architecture, though also prominent in Modern Greek design, as well as contemporary poetry and drama, the Caryatid serves as a logo for the country and the Greeks at large, especially when referring to their relations with their fellow-Europeans. In contemporary Greek culture, Caryatids are deployed as symbols of Greekness as well as a means to achieve the nation’s cultural emancipation against the supremacy of western, globalised modernity. Often derided as mere symptoms of colonial mimicry, through their inherent qualities of parody and subversiveness, such uses may sometimes prove unexpectedly successful in undermining modernity and its templates.
2016
"Ξεθάβουν τώρα τα αγάλματα": οι αισθητήριες αρχαιολογίες του Γιώργου Σεφέρη. In: Τιμητικός Τόμος για τη Στέλλα Δρούγου. Αθήνα: Ταμείο Αρχαιολογικών Πόρων και Απαλλοτριώσεων; 2016. pp. 348-368. Publisher's VersionAbstract
In June 1946 George Seferis, the eminent Greek poet who was goingto become the Nobel-laureate patriarch of Greek modernist poetry by1963, witnessed the re-excavation of the statues and vases until thenhidden in the vaults of the National Museum in Athens in order toprevent their damage, or looting, by the Germans during the occupation.As he observes the bronze statue of Zeus, a fifth-century BC work thatis still considered one of the masterpieces in the Museum’s collectionand of Greek art at large, the poet fantasizes the god’s lovemaking witha woman whom Seferis himself “would love”, as he unashamedly informsus in his diary from that day. In the paper, I use the concept ofhomosociality in order to explore the ways in which Seferis and manyof his contemporaries view classical antiquity and proceed to deploy itas a bio-political tool in order to claim a centralized role in Greekintellectual and political life. To this end, I re-visit Seferis’s two chief“archaeological” poems –The King of Asine and Engomi – in an effortto investigate the ways in which his sensory archaeologies manifestthemselves.
Το Πρόσφατο Μέλλον. Η Κλασική Αρχαιότητα ως Βιοπολιτικό Εργαλείο. Αθήνα: Νεφέλη; 2016. Publisher's Version
Greek Art and Archaeology, 1200-30 BC. Atlanta: Lockwood Press; 2016. Publisher's VersionAbstract
Τhis lavishly illustrated book surveys Greek archaeology from the collapse of the Mycenaean palaces to the subordination of the last Hellenistic kingdoms to Rome. Its aim is to study Greek art through the material record, and against its cultural and social backdrop. The book's target audience is archaeology and art students, as well as anyone interested in Greek art and culture. Through concise, systematic covering of the main categories of classical monuments, the reader is taken to a tour of ancient Greece along the most spectacular period in its history, the 1st millennium BC. Architecture and city planning, sculpture, painting, pottery, metallurgy, jewelry, and numismatics are some of the areas covered.
Ελληνική Τέχνη και Αρχαιολογία, 1200-30 π.Χ. 2nd ed. Αθήνα: Καπόν; 2016.
2015
Perverse fragments: citing Cavafy in crisis-stricken Athens. Journal of Greek Media & Culture [Internet]. 2015;1(2):191-205. Publisher's VersionAbstract
A publicity campaign run in Athens by the Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation in October 2013 in order to advertise its acquisition of the Cavafy Archive, until then lying in relevant obscurity, turned into a media disaster when critics and members of the public protested against what they argued was a misquoting of the highly revered Alexandrian. In this paper, I am looking at this rather entertaining story of misunderstood intentions in order to suggest that even though Cavafy himself may be shown to have enjoyed history as fragmented experience, and despite the fact that the modern archive is one of often conflicting partialities rather than one of completeness, we, as consumers of Cavafy’s oeuvre, tend to sustain his long-established position as a paragon of Greek culture, canonised through his own nonconformity. As a typical case of ‘archive fever’, the events described here confirm the political specificity of any literary discourse, even when conducted out of context (or especially so).
2014
Dead archaeologists, buried gods: archaeology as an agent of modernity in Greece. In: Tziovas D Re-imagining the Past. Antiquity and Modern Greek Culture. Oxford: Oxford University Press; 2014. pp. 147-164.
Οι Αρχαιολογίες του Κλασικού. Αναθεωρώντας τον Εμπειρικό Κανόνα. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις του Εικοστού Πρώτου; 2014.
2012
Archaeology after the end of History. Historein [Internet]. 2012;12:68-78. Publisher's Version
The glory that was not; embodying the classical in contemporary Greece. Interactions. Studies in Communication & Culture [Internet]. 2012;3(2):147-171. Publisher's Version
The kouros of Keratea: constructing subaltern pasts in contemporary Greece. Journal of Social Archaeology [Internet]. 2012;12:220-244. Publisher's Version
A Companion to Greek Art. (ed. with Smith TJ). Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell; 2012.
2011
Praxiteles, the Sauroctonus, and the Roman Gem Cutter. Antike Kunst [Internet]. 2011;54:55-61. Publisher's Version
Behold the raking geison; the new Acropolis Museum and its context-free archaeologies. Antiquity [Internet]. 2011;85:613-630. Publisher's Version
The iconography of assimilation; Isis as royalty on Ptolemaic seal-impressions. In: Iossif PP, Chankowski A, Lorber CC More than Men, Less than Gods. Studies on Royal Cult and Imperial Worship. Leuven: Peeters; 2011. pp. 389-415.
Η αρχαιολογία της μνήμης: Άργος Ορεστικό. In: Μπουραζέλης Κ Η μνήμη της κοινότητας και η διαχείρισή της. Μελέτες από μια ημερίδα αφιερωμένη στη μνήμη του Τίτου Παπαμαστοράκη. Αθήνα: Καρδαμίτσας; 2011. pp. 189-210.
Ελληνική Τέχνη και Αρχαιολογία, 1100-30 π.Χ. Αθήνα: Καπόν; 2011.
2008
A Singular Antiquity. Archaeology and Hellenic Identity in Twentieth-Century Greece. (ed. with Damaskos D). Athens: Benaki Museum; 2008. Publisher's VersionAbstract
A Singular Antiquity is an attempt to investigate the ideological strategies, somewhat improvised yet at times quite effective, through which the materiality of Greek archaeology has been employed as the foundation for the metaphysics of Greekness.
1999
Classicism to Neo-classicism. Essays dedicated to Gertrud Seidmann. (ed. with Henig M). Oxford: Archaeopress; 1999.
Hellenistic Engraved Gems. Oxford: Oxford University Press; 1999.