Zappeion Gardens Sculpture
τΑ ΓΛΥΠΤΑ ΤΩΝ ΚΗΠΩΝ ΤΟΥ ΖΑΠΠΕΙΟΥ
Zappeion Hall, an attractive building designed by Theophilos Hansen, was constructed from 1874 to 1888. In the past few years some of the most significant events in the history of Greece have taken place here, such as European summits, and several significant political conferences and official public announcements. Art exhibitions and occasional concerts are also held here. Left and right of the main entrance of Zappeion Hall are the statues of the two Zappas cousins, who funded the construction of the building, and an attractive park, where Athenians go for a walk. Across Zappeion Hall there is Aigli, a nice café and restaurant as well as an open-air movie theater of the same name. Located in the historic center of Athens, within walking distance from the Acropolis and the Olympic Panathenaic Stadium of the 1896 Olympic Games, the Zappeion is in the middle of over 200,000 square meters of gardens with meandering paths, fountains and over 70 works of sculpture.
The "Wood Splitter" by renowned Greek sculptor Dimitrios Filippotis (1839 - 1919), created of marble, was originally placed in the small square (dedicated to the late choreographer Rallou Manou) by the Russian Church on Philhellinon Street, in Syntagma. Through the years, the artwork it suffered several repeated damages by prudish and sexually insecure churchgoers who were bothered by its nudity, until it was moved to its present permanent site, on the Zappeion grounds, opposite to the Olympic Stadium, in 1958.