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The new version of the Andreas G. Kalokerinos Room


Historical Museum of Crete: The new version of the Andreas G. Kalokerinos Room

Apart from inaugurating the temporary exhibition El Greco between Venice and Rome, on the same day Ministry of Culture General Secretary Lina Mendoni will also open the revamped introductory room at the Historical Museum of Crete. Dedicated to Andreas G. Kalokerinos, on whose initiative the Society of Cretan Historical Studies and the Museum itself were founded, this room offers visitors their first contact with 17 centuries of local history, preparing them for the remaining exhibition spaces in the Museum.

With regard to layout, the room retains the previous division into two large sections. The first provides basic information on the major periods of Cretan history that are elaborated on in the Museum’s exhibition spaces. Combining artifacts, maps, books (some of which can be leafed through in situ via i-pad) and illustrations with concise documentation and electronic installations (the emphasis being on co-ordinated video projections), this section offers a condensed overview historical development on the island from the early Christian period to World War II.

The second section has a mockup of Venetian Candia as its focal point. An impressive structure measuring approximately 15 square metres, it is a 1:500 scale replica of the city in the mid-17th century, shortly before the Ottoman offensive. The renewed visuals on the surrounding walls – plans, photographs and commentary – present particular monuments and points in the city, which visitors can pick out on the model by using the special lighting system. Alternatively, a tour of the city can be made by a wall projection of relevant visual material, combined with spotlights picking out monuments (this system is now in its “fourth generation” development phase).

The model was designed and built in the early 1990 by a team of leading researchers: Chryssoula Tzombanaki, Liana Starida, Socrates Chaniotakis and Maria Ioannidou. The A. G. Kalokerinos Room, which received the model as its central exhibit, was created in 1994 under the supervision of Alexis Kalokerinos.

The re-display was designed by him and Dimitris Kalokyris, who was responsible for graphic design. The re-exhibition was curated by historian Agisilaos Kaloutsakis with the assistance of archaeologist Stella Kalentaki – both research staff members at the Historical Museum of Crete.