Much like a stale almond pie, forgotten behind the dusty window display of a rundown neighborhood pastry shop, the industrial building that once housed the famous FIX Greek brewery, a fine example of post-war industrial architecture, the creation of renowned architect Takis Zenetos, but now deformed, has been opening and closing its doors. The National Museum of Contemporary Art (EMST) established in 2000, is the sole national institution focused only on collecting and exhibiting contemporary Greek and international art in Athens.
The renovated (or maybe destroyed?) industrial FIX Brewery building that today houses the Ntl. Museum of Contemporary Art.
There was a push to get the museum up and running, when it was announced that documenta 14 would be held in both Athens and Kassel in 2017. Former Director Katerina Koskina said, “This is something that should have happened years ago.” The museum’s inaugural exhibition, “Urgent Conversations: Athens—Antwerp,” opened in 2016. The show was described as “a reflective dialogue” between the collections of the new Greek museum and the Flemish Contemporary Art Museum in Antwerp.
The building is located in close proximity to the center of Athens as well as the archaeological sites of the city, including the Acropolis and the New Acropolis Museum and is being serviced by a dedicated station of the Athens Metro system. The recent restoration of the building created modern facilities for the permanent collection, periodic exhibitions, educational programs, and workshops. After an international architectural competition was announced, the architectural office which won the first prize and will realize the renovation of the Fix building was 3SK Stylianidis Architects in collaboration with Ioannis Mouzakis and Associates architects LTD – studies of technical works Pan. Babilis and associates, and INSTA. Until the return of the museum operations to the Fix building, EMST used for its sporadic exhibitions program in the spaces of the Athens Conservatory, one of the most prestigious cultural institutions and finest buildings of architecture in Athens.
Another view of the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Athens.