Smyrna. The destruction of a cosmopolitan city 1900-1922 – film

Having carried out four years of research, the director and curator, Maria Iliou, and the historical consultant, Alexander Kitroeff, who previously presented The Journey at the Benaki Museum in 2007, now present their work on Smyrna via previously unseen visual materials from archives from the US and Europe. The historical documentary and exhibition have special importance not only because they present these previously unknown images of Smyrna but also because Iliou and Kitroeff bring a new perspective; a perspective that keeps its distance from both an excessive nationalistic narration of the tale, and from more recent attempts to conceal the tragic events of the disaster, thereby distorting the truth. Even though the cosmopolitan city of Smyrna was destroyed, through this work it continues to live on in some way. It continues to be an idea that has to do with cosmopolitanism, with joie de vivre and with disaster. 90 years after the disaster, this documentary and the photographic exhibition pay tribute to the world which was lost in 1922 while at the same time paying tribute to the discipline of history. Historians from the US and Europe present us with the big picture while first, second and third generation Smyrniots narrate personal stories. Three of them in particular recount family stories in relation to the events from a Greek, Armenian and Turkish perspective, from the years of cosmpolitanism to the time of the destruction. Editor Aliki Panagi used sounds from the period as the soundscape of the film, in order to bring the events to life, while the musician Nikos Platyrachos used songs from Smyrna and hits of the time when composing his original music. The archival visual materials were collected and preserved by the not for profit organization PROTEUS thanks to sponsorship from the BODOSSAKIS Foundation. The rare film by Robert Davidian found in Los Angeles was preserved by Colorlab in Washington DC. (Source imbd)

(Languages: Greek, English, Subtitles in French – 87min)

Venue: Uni-Dufour, salle U300 Auditoire Rouiller, 24 rue du Général-Dufour

Further Information: PDF (Greek, French)