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The Athens School of Fine Arts

The history of the Athens School of Fine Arts coincides the history of the Modern Greek state. The “School of Arts” was founded by Royal Decree in December 1836, modelled on similar institutions in Western Europe, and especially Germany (Bavaria) and France.

In July 1930, the School became an autonomous Higher Education institution, with “the practical and theoretical education of artists in the visual arts” as its main objective.

Since 1944, many important artists, such as Thomopoulos, Parthenis, Moralis, Mavroidis, Grammatopoulos, Papaloukas, Pappas, Kalamaras, Apartis, Tetsis, Kokkinidis, Kessanlis, Mytaras, Nikolaidis, Dekoulakos, Exarchopoulos, and architect Mylonas, art historian Marina Lambraki-Plaka and architect Savvas Kontaratos, have taught at the School, ensuring that the prevailing trends in contemporary art are represented both in the studio and the lecture theatre.

The Athens School of Fine Arts is a self-governed Higher Education Institution and consists of two departments: the Department of Fine Arts, with three routes in the undergraduate degree course (Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking), and the Department of Theory and History of Art. Τhe latter was inaugurated in the 2006-2007 academic year, when it admitted its very first students.

While Panagiotis Tetsis was Dean, the Greek state donated the premises of an old textile factory, known as “Sikiarideion” and located at 256 Piraeus Street, to the Athens School of Fine Arts, an event that was a landmark in the School’s development. The regeneration of the premises took place under Dean Nikos Kessanlis, and the complex is now home to the studios of the Department of Fine Arts, the Master’s Degree in Digital Arts, the Department of Theory and History of Art, the Library and the Network Management Centre. The Piraeus Street complex also houses the “Nikos Kessanlis” gallery, which is used as the venue for ASFA graduate shows, as well as for other exhibitions and events.

The building at 42 Patission Street, which is part of the National Technical University of Athens, houses the Master’s Degree in Fine Arts, the Dean’s Office, the ASFA Press, and the School’s administrative services.

The six ASFA Annexes in Delphi, Mithymna (Lesvos), Mykonos, Rethymno, Rhodes and Hydra, where students gain practical experience, are an integral part of the learning process.