Tonight at long last I visited the recently completed building site of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre, a huge complex in the middle of Athens. Only part of it is open to visitors, but you can walk along the long rectangular pond to a plaza that has the Opera on the left and the National Library on the right. It is an oasis of magnificent, Ancient Egyptian architectural scale and grace, hemmed in by six-lane highways on three sides. Renzo Piano did an amazing job: the gently sloping park half a mile long fools your eye and looks horizontal until you realise that it cannot be since the adjoining pond must be level. Grand, yet surprisingly low-key and welcoming architecture. If only they had given Piano the commission of the disastrously fugly Acropolis Museum!
pic credit: my iPhone.
Categories: off topic