On the forefront of the European elections, the presidents of Greece and Italy decided that this is the right moment to inaugurate a show with the clear political message title “Classicism and Europe, the Destiny of Greece and Italy.” The show is expected to take place at Rome’s Quirinale presidential palace.
In a statement that the President of the Republic Giorgio Napolitano made on Friday, he noted “at a time when many citizens question the future of the Union, Italian and Hellenic presidencies have wanted to bring together some of the great masterpieces from both our countries.”
According to Mr. Napolitano’s statement, the 25 works on view “express the complex elaboration of a European consciousness through the millennia, which germinated in Greece and in Italy and which is marked by that respect for the individual and his freedoms, which the ancients celebrated so much.”
“This initiative aims to underscore the message that the classical civilizations sent to Europe,” highlighted the presidential artistic heritage advisor Louis Godart. According to him, this message is based on two fundamental points: “Man as History’s center and the values of democracy, which Pericles invented in ancient Greece.”
This explains why the exhibit will open with a statue of Harmodius and Aristogeiton which is known as the Tyrannicides after they killed Hipparchus the tyrant.
“In the past two years, Greece, Italy and other Mediterranean countries have been at the center of concerns such as: ‘do these countries have a place in the European family?’ Our common answer is crystal clear; there can be no Europe without Greece and Italy, since European civilization rests on Greek-Roman foundations,” mentioned Lina Mendoni, the Greek Culture Ministry Secretary General.