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Athens’ National Garden to ‘Host’ Augmented Reality Contemporary Art Exhibition

The National Garden of Athens will transform into a contemporary art space through Augmented Reality (AR) technology as part of the “Seeing the Invisible” international exhibition.

In its second year, the international event will be presented simultaneously in 10 botanical gardens worldwide from October 22 until September 2023.

The participating gardens will all present the same exhibition, but as the works are augmented into the unique surroundings and context of each garden, “Seeing the Invisible” will be experienced differently against the backdrop of each location.

“This is a powerful experience as we navigate the paths and the art works ’emerge’ and ‘enhance’ the rich beauty of the gardens,” said Athens Mayor Kostas Bakoyiannis.

Athens’ National Garden is among the new partner-gardens to take part in the AR exhibition. The Greek version will be held under the organization of the Municipality of Athens and Outset Greece.

“We want our city to be a pioneer and stand out. We want technology to serve beauty and make our lives better,” the mayor added.

Special mobile app needed to see the exhibition

The exhibition can only be viewed upon visiting the garden and after downloading the “Seeing the Invisible” mobile app – – developed for the project. With the help of the suggested route displayed on the application’s map, visitors can move around the space to find the artworks augmented into the natural surroundings.

“This is an unprecedented experience of viewing contemporary art through technology,” said Outset Greece Director Artemis Stamatiadis.

“The exhibition touches on critical contemporary issues such as environmental awareness, the technological footprint, and an inclusive lifestyle.”

Fourteen renowned international artists will participate in the Greek version of the exhibition, including Greek Loukia Alavanou among Refik Anadol, El Anatsui, Ori Gersht, Isaac Julien CBE RA, Mohammed Kazem, Sigalit Landau, Daito Manabe, Sarah Meyohas, Mel O’Callaghan, Pamela Rosenkranz, Timur Si-Qin, Jakob Kudsk Steensen, Ai Weiwei.

“Seeing the Invisible” first launched in 2021 by the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens in partnership with Outset Contemporary Art Fund and the support of the Jerusalem Foundation.

Beside the National Garden of Athens and the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens, another 8 botanical gardens around the world participate in the 2022 – 2023 edition of the exhibition. They are the Adelaide Botanic Garden in Australia, the Eden Project in UK, the Gardens by the Bay in Singapore, the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Florida, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Texas, the Garden at Elm Bank in Massachusetts, the MOCA, Sorauren Park and High Park in Toronto and the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden in South Africa.

The National Garden in Athens, an example of 19th century English style landscape architecture, was recently refurbished by the Municipality of Athens with more upgrade work scheduled for the future.

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  1. Benedict Perny Reply

    would be so interested, but cannot download the app on
    one of my 3 android smartphones?????????

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