Ellie Papadimitriou’s relationship with photography derives from her love for painting. As a member of the Asia Minor Refugee Settlement Commission and an associate of the Centre for Asia Minor Studies, and equipped with modern cameras, she follows the settlement of the displaced as well as the natives in land and coastal settlements. In search of a language to express herself, she builds through personal observation a new understanding of local knowledge. Through her lens, she compiles an alphabet of both ancient and modern Greece.
The exhibition presents photographs taken between 1928 and the early 1950s. They form part of a larger collection remains unknown to this day.
Ellie Papadimitriou (Smyrna 1906 – Athens 1993) studied Agriculture in England. After 1922 she settled in Greece, struggling for the welfare of the Asia Minor refugees and rescuing their cultural heritage. She joined the ‘Greek Arts S.A.’ company and thanks to her wide-ranging interests, from poetry and traditional culture to painting, the rebetiko songs (‘Greek Blues’) and theatre, she was closely linked with such luminaries of the period as Photis Kontoglou, Αngelos Sikelianos, Οctave Merlier, Κarolos Κoun, Sotiris Spatharis, Yannis Tsarouchis, Νikos Hadjikyriakos-Ghika, Gerasimos Steris, Julio Kaimi, Νikos Engonopoulos and Klaus Frieslander. Committed to the Left, she was active in the anti-fascist struggle in the Middle East (1941–1945). A poet and a playwright, her book Common Sense is considered to be her masterpiece.